Ukrainian rap group Kalush boosted the morale of their war-torn country last month by winning the Eurovision Song Contest, the most popular and most colorful song contest in the world.
That victory, with the song “Stephanie”, meant that Ukraine also received the right to host the next competition, scheduled for May 2023. But Eurovision organizers announced on Friday it would be impossible.
This was stated by the organizers, the European Broadcasting Union. news release that he concluded “with deep regret” that Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine meant that Ukraine could not provide the “security and operational guarantees” necessary to host an event in which musicians representing countries from across Europe compete against each other for points.
The European Broadcasting Union said it would instead open talks with the BBC to host the event in the UK because Britain’s Sam Ryder finished second in last month’s competition.
The BBC confirmed in an emailed statement that it would take part in these discussions. “Obviously,” he said, “this is not a set of circumstances that anyone might need.”
Wherever the event takes place, the Kalush Orchestra will most likely perform. “We are determined that Ukraine’s victory will be reflected in next year’s show,” the European Broadcasting Union said. “This will be a priority for us in our discussions with potential hosts,” he added.
The Kalush Orchestra did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Ukraine has already hosted this event twice, most recently in 2017.