This revelatory documentary uncovers amazing stories about what really goes on behind the scenes at Eurovision. With contributions from former winner Cheryl Baker, former loser Andy Abraham and former host Jan Leeming, we get the inside track on life on the Eurovision stage, from defying terrorist threats to blacking out backstage after hitting the booze too hard.
And from industry insiders and Eurovision historians, we get to hear about diva behaviour, political voting scandals and Cliff Richard hiding in the toilets.
We also get the lowdown on BBC antagonism towards Eurovision, how one BBC governor saw Eurovision as ‘grasping vulgarity that he could not bear to watch’ and another saying ‘that when it seemed that the UK would win the contest (and have to pay for it again in 1978), BBC faces at Wembley had grown longer and longer’.
We even explore the murky rumours that Cliff Richard was robbed of his 1968 win by General Franco of Spain bribing the judges.
The documentary offers photographs never before seen and testimony never before heard of an audacious, and ridiculous, attempt by an Albanian delegation to storm the Royal Albert Hall and demand a place on the Eurovision stage — before being uncovered as fakes.
Among other revelations are insights into Eurovision’s battle with politics, from the Dutch entry that celebrated drugs, the Italian entry that was banned in its home country for fear that it would influence a referendum on legalising divorce, and the Portuguese entry that literally started a military coup.
Eurovision: Secrets & Scandals airs on Channel 5 at 8:00pm