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The Netherlands

The Dutch King and Queen get into the Eurovision spirit

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima of The Netherlands are getting into the Eurovision spirit ahead of the contest’s grand finale in Rotterdam on Saturday.

The Eurovision Song Contest, often described as the Olympic Games of singing, is being held in the major port city of Rotterdam this year.

In a joint statement this week, the King and Queen said: ”Good luck to everyone taking part in the Eurovision Song Contest.

“We hope you have a wonderful time. Incredible work has been done by all those involved in organising the event.

“We already have one winner and that’s Rotterdam!”

A total of 39 countries from Europe and beyond are competing for the Eurovision trophy this year.

The Netherlands won the competition in 2019, meaning they were tasked with hosting the show the following year.

Due to the ongoing global health emergency, the 2020 edition was postponed, meaning Rotterdam will host the global stage this year instead.

The current bookmaker favourites to win this year’s competition are Iceland and Malta.

The Eurovision Song Contest was first held in 1956 and is transmitted around the world on television and radio.

Each participating country selects a performer and original song to perform at the contest, with competing countries casting votes for the other countries’ songs to determine a winner.

The contest was first held in 1956, with organisers hoping to bridge together a broken Europe following World War II through music.

The first contest had just seven countries taking part. Since then, over 50 countries have competed in the show’s history, with participation expanding well beyond Europe.