Portugal's Salvador Sobral wins Eurovision

Cheryl Sanders
May 24, 2017

It was the first time Portugal, who didn't take part in last year's series, have ever won the contest.

The 27-year-old Sobral was greeted by hundreds of ecstatic fans upon landing at Lisbon Airport. This is the first time Portugal wins, although they have been in the contest for 53 years, from 1964.

Though the event has run smoothly, it has done so under the watchful eye of an nearly overwhelming police and army presence at the venue, Kiev's International Exhibition Centre, and key locations in the city, such as Independence Square. But this year's Russian entrant, Yuliya Samoylova, was blocked from competing by Ukraine because she had toured in Crimea after Russia's 2014 annexation of the peninsula. The move allowed Russia-Ukraine tensions over Eurovision to fester.

She added: Fantastic performance.

"You have to make the most of every opportunity no matter how big the stage is", Firebrace said. I know this won't last.

Anja Nissen will join fellow Australian contestant Isaiah Firebrace in the Eurovision grand final. Talk is rising regarding possible venue options for the competition, with the Portuguese national broadcaster RTP confirming the host city for Eurovision 2018.

"Whatever happens we've proven we're coming to play", SBS telecast host Joel Creasey said.

"But tonight, is our final night, shortly IBA will shut down its broadcasting forever, so on behalf of all of us here in IBA, let me say thank you Europe for all the magical moments and the handsome years".

The contest helped launch the careers of Sweden's ABBA - victors in 1974 with "Waterloo" - Canada's Celine Dion, who won for Switzerland in 1988, and Irish high-steppers Riverdance, the halftime entertainment in 1994.

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