Supriya Ghosh (Editor)

Luxembourg in the Eurovision Song Contest

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Covid-19
Member station  RTL
First appearance  1956
Appearances  37
Last appearance  1993
Luxembourg in the Eurovision Song Contest
National selection events  Internal Selection 1956–1958 1960–1975 1977 1979–1988 1990–1991 1993 National selection 1976 1978 1989 1992
Best result  1st: 1961, 1965, 1972, 1973, 1983

Luxembourg has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 37 times since making their debut at the first contest in 1956. From 1956 to 1993, Luxembourg missed only one contest, in 1959. Since 1994, Luxembourg has not participated in the contest.

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Luxembourg has won the contest a total of five times. The only countries with more victories are Sweden, with six, and Ireland, with seven. Their first victory was in 1961 when Jean-Claude Pascal won with the song "Nous les amoureux". France Gall gave them their second victory in 1965 with "Poupée de cire, poupée de son". Luxembourg then achieved back to back victories in the early 1970s, with Vicky Leandros winning in Edinburgh in 1972 with the song "Après toi" and Anne-Marie David winning in 1973 with "Tu te reconnaîtras". Luxembourg's fifth victory was in 1983 when Corinne Hermes won with "Si la vie est cadeau".

Over the next decade, the country struggled to make an impact, failing to reach the top ten in seven of nine contests from 1985–1993, the exceptions were Sherisse Laurence, who was third in 1986 and Lara Fabian, who was fourth in 1988. Since being relegated from taking part in 1994, the country withdrew from the contest indefinitely.

Luxembourg's Minister of Culture, Maggy Nagel, expressed her desire for the country to return to the contest. This was later explained as a "misunderstanding" by the Culture Minister. A collaboration with San Marino has been proposed, but later SMRTV clarified that there have only been talks between the two countries and that the broadcaster is evaluating other proposals. It was later announced that the project would not move forward due to funding problems.

Recent history

In 2004, RTL were to return to Eurovision after an absence of 11 years. However, after monetary issues, Luxembourg withdrew. Strong rumours indicated that RTL would participate at the 2005 contest. However, RTL later decided against it, and said that they would "never" return. In 2008, RTL later reiterated their lack of interest in returning to the contest.

OGAE Luxembourg

In recent years the Luxembourg branch of OGAE has been campaigning for Luxembourg to return to the contest. The 2008 convention held by the organization, featuring Luxembourgish entrants Corinne Hermès and Marion Welter, as well as the Portuguese entrant of the 2008 contest Vânia Fernandes, received major media attention within the country, with RTL reporting twice on the event, and were present to interview Hermès.

Chances of returning

The chances of Luxembourg returning to the contest seem to be slim, but the RTL Group is still a member of the EBU and announced in September 2009 that they were in serious considerations regarding returning to the contest in 2010. However, they would have had to secure fees regarding participation and the artist's expenses. Although it was rumoured that Luxembourg would return in the 2012 edition of the contest, RTL has announced that no such intentions exist at present.

On 31 July 2014, RTL Télé Lëtzebuerg confirmed that Luxembourg would not be returning to the contest in 2015. It was reported on 26 October 2014 that the country's Minister of Culture, Maggy Nagel, expressed her desire for the country to return to the contest. This was later confirmed by Nagel to be a "misunderstanding" and that the country would not be returning. A collaboration with San Marino has been proposed by the broadcaster SMRTV and singer Thierry Mersch, but later SMRTV clarified that there have only been talks between the two countries and that the broadcaster is evaluating other proposals. However, on 24 November 2014, it was announced that Mersch had failed to raise the necessary funds in time for the project to move forward.

On 21 June 2016, the Petitions Committee of the Government of Luxembourg received five petitions on various matters in relation to the Grand Duchy. One of which was for Luxembourg to return to the Eurovision Song Contest. The Luxembourg Government will therefore hold a debate to discuss the proposals set out on the petition, and the possible return of the country to the contest. Nevertheless, RTL reiterated its intention not to participate on 22 August.

Absences

Between 1956 and 1993 Luxembourg was only absent from the Contest once, in 1959. However, in 1993 Luxembourg was relegated from taking part in the 1994 Contest, and has yet to return.

Contestants

Due to the country's small size and the national broadcaster's penchant for internal selection, most of Luxembourg's entrants came from outside the Grand Duchy, mainly from France. All five of the winning artists from Luxembourg were foreign, four were French and one was Greek. Out of 38 entries in total and even more performers, only the following eight were native to Luxembourg: Camillo Felgen, Chris Baldo, Monique Melsen, Sophie Carle, Franck Olivier, Sarah Bray, Marion Welter and Modern Times.

Table key

NOTE: The full results for the first contest in 1956 are unknown, only the winner was announced. The official Eurovision site lists all the other songs as being placed second.

Voting history

As of 1993, Luxembourg's voting history is as follows:

Commentators and spokespersons

Through the 37 years Luxembourg took part in the Eurovision Song Contest, the contest was broadcast on two channels (RTL TV and RTL Hei Elei), but the contest was mostly broadcast on the French section of RTL until it was divided in 1991 and after that it was broadcast in Luxembourgish. However, only one commentator (Maurice Molitor) was native to Luxembourg.

Congratulations: 50 Years of the Eurovision Song Contest

Table key

References

Luxembourg in the Eurovision Song Contest Wikipedia


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