Eurovision felt different this year in the shadow of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and there was an outpouring of love for the embattled country from other competing nations.
Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra were the bookies favourites to win by a wide margin, with the UK’s Sam Ryder also expected to place in the top four.
In spite of Europe’s troubles, the contest remained a highly sequined and feathered affair and represented a coming together of the continent in friendly competition.
Who won Eurovision 2022?
As was expected, Ukraine were the night’s winners, following a huge win in the public vote.
After the jury scores had been counted, the UK was leading the scoreboard with 283 points, with Sweden and Spain trailing in second and third place.
However, in a huge show of support from Europe and Australia, Ukraine took 439 points, giving them 631 points overall, enough to secure them a comfortable lead of more than 150 points by the end of the night.
Kalush Orchestra performed Stefania, a song about one of the band member’s mothers.
One of the lyrics, which translates to “I‘ll always find my way home, even if all roads are destroyed”, has taken on new meaning in the wake of the Russian invasion.
This is the third time Ukraine has won Eurovision since joining in 2003 - the country first won in 2004 when Ruslana’s performed Wild Dances, and their next win came in 2016 with Jamala singing 1944.
Where did the UK place in Eurovision 2022?
After topping the scoreboard following the judges vote, the UK were overtaken by several countries during the reading out of the public vote, dropping to fifth place before the public vote for the UK was read out.
However, after picking up 183 points in the public vote, it was enough to push the UK back into second place, just seven points ahead of Spain.
Sam Ryder performed Space Man, about an astronaut travelling into space, and brought the UK it’s most successful Eurovision for decades and burying the pain of last year’s nul points.
Has the UK ever won Eurovision?
Yes, the UK has won Eurovision five times, although it has been a quarter of a century since the UK’s last victory in the contest.
The first UK win came in 1967 with Sandie Shaw performing Puppet on a String, followed up two years later by Lulu with Boom Bang-a-Bang.
The UK’s third Eurovision win was in 1976 with Brotherhood of Man performing Save Your Kisses for Me, and in 1981 Books Fizz won with Making Your Mind Up.
The last time the UK won the contest was in 1997 when Katrina and the Waves performed Love Shine a Light.
Interestingly, the UK has come last as many times as it has won, most recently in 2021, when James Newman performed Embers and received no points.
Where will Eurovision be held next year?
Eurovision is always held in the country that won the year before - this year the show was hosted in Turin, after Maneskin won for Italy in 2021.
This means that the competition should be held in Ukraine next year, however with the Russian invasion still ongoing and daily fighting in the country, it is unclear whether it will be safe or practical for Ukraine to play host.
Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, said in a Facebook post: “Our courage impresses the world our music conquers Europe!”
“Next year Ukraine will host Eurovision! For the third time in its history. And I believe – not for the last time.”
He went on to pledge that “one day” the Eurovision song contest would be hosted in Ukrainian Mariupol, a city which has been almost entirely captured by the Russians.