Eurovision 2018 – as it happened: Israel's Netta wins in close final as UK's SuRie avoids 'nil points' after stage invasion
Israel's Netta has won the Eurovision song contest 2018. It was a night filled with drama, including the tense moment a man invaded the stage during UK entry SuRie's performance and grabbed the mic to shout about "Nazis" and the "UK media". After the night's jury votes, it seemed the competition was down to two of the night's charmers, Austria's Cesar Sampson and Sweden's Benjamin Ingrosso.
However, the public vote changed all that: the favour shifted first to Israel and Cyprus' Eleni Foureira, with Netta finally triumphing with her bright, bonkers pop anthem 'Toy'. "Thank you for celebrating diversity. Thank you!
I love my country! See you in Jerusalem!" she said in her acceptance speech, as a member of the crowd waved their stuffed Pikachu in triumph, referencing the song's lyrics. You can check out all the action as it happened below:
Live Updates21 hours ago
Hello and welcome to our liveblog for the Eurovision Song Contest final 2018!21 hours ago Here's a reminder of how to watch from home The IndependentThe grand final of this year's Eurovision Song Contest is almost upon us.
The annual pantomime of kitsch will be broadcast live from Lisbon on Saturday night, with Russia returning to the roster after sitting out last year's competition in Ukraine on political grounds.21 hours ago Make sure you're following our brilliant writer Rob Holley on Twitter who is there for the live show and will be sharing updates, photos and video The latest Tweets from Rob Holley (@robholley). Co-Chair of @RVTFuture | Promoter + DJ @PushTheButton | Writing bits for the Independent on Eurovision this month. Lives for a double handclap ??.
Camberwell, London21 hours ago
Ahead of the main event, make sure you're caught up with all of our Eurovision 2018 coverage...21 hours ago Earlier on we explored how Eurovision has become such a huge draw for the LGBT+ community, speaking to the likes of former champion Conchita Wurst and current finalist Saara Aalto (Finland) The IndependentIt launched the careers of ABBA, Brotherhood of Man, Celine Dion and almost 17 per cent of the total number of Sugababes in current circulation (hi, Jade!), and remains a hotbed of over-the-top pyrotechnics, projection mapping, sweeping ballads and balls-out bangers. The Eurovision Song Contest is an international spectacle firmly at the heart of the LGBTQ+ calendar. 21 hours ago We also interviewed one of the favourites - Netta, from Israel - about body image, confidence and self-worth The IndependentIsrael has won the Eurovision Song Contest several times since first participating back in 1973, with their most recent triumph twenty years ago when Dana International snatched the crown at the Birmingham NEC with her iconic disco anthem "Diva". But 1998 was a long time ago, and Israel has been waiting for a victory for as long as the UK has.
This could be about to change. Welcome to the stage Netta Barzilai!21 hours ago So Rob Holley just told us he thinks Hungary have a good chance this evening! Here's a reminder of their track [embedded content] 20 hours ago The IndependentThis is Portugal's first ever go at hosting the Eurovision Song Contest, having spent the last 50 years finishing no higher than 6th place.
To say our hosts are revelling in the experience is an understatement. The cafes and bars are packed to capacity, the picturesque Praca do Comercio has been converted into a fan village, and every single tourist is eating pastel de nada for breakfast, brunch, lunch and tea. I'm now more custard than man.20 hours ago Twitter"Ruslana is in the Fan Village MILES away and you can hear in Lisbon is: GO!
GO! GO WILD DANCES! ??#Eurovision"20 hours ago We're asking our followers on Twitter who their favourite to win is and why, with a huge range in suggestions already... 'Henry Hogg' (@leftieoddbod) says: "The first one to wear mad clothing will get my vote, but that's most of them so I'll go for the dog juggler"'Radicai' (@kwaamfun) says: "No votes for Israel. They shouldn't even be there.
All cultural ties with Israel should be avoided until they cease their apartheid practices."While Francophile Fontanet (@TemFntnt) says:"France of course because "la langue de Moliere" is the best language of the world!" 20 hours ago
The brilliant Rob Holley has also asked a bunch of people in Lisbon whether they think the rest of Europe really hates the UK during Eurovision, read here:The IndependentThis is Portugal's first ever go at hosting the Eurovision Song Contest, having spent the last 50 years finishing no higher than 6th place. To say our hosts are revelling in the experience is an understatement. The cafes and bars are packed to capacity, the picturesque Praca do Comercio has been converted into a fan village, and every single tourist is eating pastel de nada for breakfast, brunch, lunch and tea.
I'm now more custard than man.20 hours ago Watch Rob Holley in Lisbon live on Facebook right now! 20 hours ago Do 'like' our Facebook Culture page for more of Rob's brilliant live videos 19 hours ago Can you believe it? There's a mere half hour until Eurovision 2018 kicks off in Lisbon, Portugal. But do not fear, I'll be right here to bring you all the action, make obscure pop culture references, and complain about the voting section dragging out for what feels like three centuries.
My bones, they are shaking with excitement.
19 hours ago Rob's currently LIVE in Libson from the Eurovision press room! 19 hours ago If you want a reminder of what tonight's entrants must aspire to, let me present to you 2004's winner: Ukraine's Wild Dances. Undefeated in greatness for over a decade. Fire, check.
Yelling, check. Everyone dressed like Game of Thrones extras, check. True perfection.
[embedded content] 19 hours ago
Looks like they're being well-fed backstage in Lisbon19 hours ago Here are nine people who didn't opt for the tear-away skirt. The IndependentThe Eurovision Song Contest is a spectacle to behold - filled with talent, entertainment, and stage presence.
While enjoying the musical aspect of the performances is the point, the outfits also lend to the enjoyment and appeal of the competition.19 hours ago Twitter"Typical Saturday evening in Lisbon! Just bumped into Mr Lordi ???#Eurovision" 18 hours ago
AND WE'RE OFF! Portugal have been waiting 53 years to host the contest, so they're going all out and opening with - ALL ABOARD!
A nautical theme, of course. Please say at least one country has entered a sea shanty.
Eurovision 2018 performances
Netta recently spoke to The Independent about her own body confidence: "[I was told] dress like you have nothing to celebrate Dress in black. Dress big.
Short skirts are not for you. Short sleeves are not for you. You're not sexy or beautiful.
You're funny - that's what you are. And you are a good friend. "Well I am here to break that because this is a great evil that is done in the word to so many people."
"People are locked in this state of mind and when I decided that this [gestures to herself] is who I am then that was that.
I always wanted to explore pop culture in my music and I didn't have a chance because being me and presenting that music... it's not existing."
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