ESC 2022: a vote for peace

Kalush Orchestra from Ukraine has won the Eurovision Song Contest with a record result in the audience vote. For the jurors, too, the hip-hop folk song Stefania was also among the best entries in the competition. Commentators see no problem with the fact that this year's contest was was not exclusively about music.

Open/close all quotes
The Times (GB) /

A well-deserved moral boost

Seldom has a pop event had such political significance, writes The Times:

“Ukraine's victory in the Eurovision Song Contest was long predicted. It was no less deserved. Not only did the rap-folk band of the Kalush Orchestra put on a performance as spirited as their compatriots have shown in battle; but their final plea in Turin, 'please help Ukraine, help Mariupol, help Azovstal right now', moved millions of television voters across the continent to bump up Ukraine's score from fifth place, according to the judges' initial marking, to a resounding first. The cheering echoed round the cellars and shelters in Ukraine well after midnight; the boost to Ukrainian morale was as joyous as it was needed.”

Novaya Gazeta Europe (RU) /

Russia rightly sidelined

Russia was excluded from the competition while Ukraine was the audience's darling and winner. It serves Russia right, Novaya Gazeta Europa concludes:

“ESC 2022 highlighted an urgent desire for peace and a calm, normal everyday life. ... Let us imagine for a moment that Russia had been allowed to participate: what could today's Russia have offered to today's Europe? A song about Russians not surrendering and not leaving their people in the lurch? With the letter Z all over the stage? ... You can say as often as you like that Ukraine's victory was artificial, that it's all politics and that everyone simply doesn't like us. Yes, that's how it is, but we also did everything we could to make people not like us.”

La Vanguardia (ES) /

Unbearable aesthetics but socially important

La Vanguardia wishes the spirit of Eurovision could prevail in all Europe:

“From 1993 onwards, the countries of the East started to present their atypical and lively entries at the ESC. Ukraine is the best example of this successful launch. ... Although more a festival of geopolitics than a musical event, the ESC's artistic essence cannot be denied entirely. ... Even for those who find the contest unbearable from an aesthetic point of view it would be desirable not only that the current Eurovision contest continues, but that more Eurovision-like events are created in other areas of European coexistence.”