#Official Commentary of Sergey Kondrykinskiy on political nature of Eurovision Song Contest in Ukraine
Eurovision Song Contest is an international music competition, which is broadcasted at the same time in almost all European countries. Competition Founders created it in the 1950s to bring people together around music and help post-war Europe to get away from the political hysteria that swept the world during the Cold War. We cannot say that the policy had no effect on this musical competition, but competition rules have always read as performed song should not contain political or advertising messages.
However, over the past two years, the organizers of Eurovision clearly changed rhetoric. The competition involves songs with a clear political connotation, it comes to the fact that in respect of some artists various provocations up to boycotts are organized. In 2016, the rules for determining the winners were changed. Now the final decision is made by the jury, and not open popular vote, as it was earlier. This, without doubt, casts a shadow on the reputation of the competition, claiming to be an entertaining show out of politics. Therefore, despite the open dissatisfaction of the European audience, Ukrainian singer Jamala with scandalous ‘nonpoliticized’ song “1944” won the last competition, and this year, the next stage of the “eurosaga” will be held in Ukraine.
Maybe Kiev’s motive for holding the European competition must be understood as follows: for more than two years Ukraine has been in a state of absolute political and economic chaos, and patriotic euphoria, supported by painting fences and garbage cans in blue and yellow tones, dried up, and the Ukrainians are clearly tired of standby of European bright future. The victory of the Ukrainian singer was able to at least partially raise the spirit of Ukrainian eurosupporters, especially if we consider that Jamala literally scratched out the victory from the hands of the Russian singer Sergey Lazarev
Ukrainian officials, inspired by superiority, started preparations for the contest and decided that Eurovision is another way to draw the world’s attention to Ukraine, which began to appear in the Western news feeds much less. Recently, many Ukrainian politicians began to notice that Europe has begun to pay less attention to Ukrainian issues, allowing them to dig their ‘Augean stables’ on their own.
Ukrainian Vice Prime Minister Vyacheslav Kyrylenko was one of the latest to comment on the upcoming competition. In an interview with TV channel “Espresso.TV” Mr. Kyrylenko said that, for Ukraine, Eurovision is a question of a political nature. Vice Prime Minister believes that the politicians of Europe think about Ukraine too little, which badly needs their attention and care, preferably in cash. It is for this reason that the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 will be held at a very high ideological and artistic level. The article on the “Espresso.TV” website does not specify what the Deputy Prime Minister means by ideological content, but we want to believe that it will not be torchlight processions, signs of the swastika, mass self-arsons or self-shellings. Because this level of ideology will hardly appeal to Western visitors.
Judging by statements made by Ukrainian politicians, as soon as the Europeans will come to Ukraine, they have to see and understand that Ukrainians are able to take tourists and throw grandiose shows. Following the logic of the Vice Prime Minister, you would think that before the “Maidan,” the level of civilization in Ukraine was slightly above the primitive communal system, and only the coup showed the Ukrainian nation “the path to the light.” Perhaps Mr. Kirilenko forgot that before the ‘revolution of dignity,’ this country has hosted the European Football Championship, and the Eurovision Song Contest is held on the Ukrainian ground not for the first time.
Therefore, I would like to ask the Vice Premier Kirilenko and his colleagues: why modern Ukraine in any event tries to see a political subtext, which necessarily has to have ‘Russian aggression’? Can’t you just hold an international competition and receive guests with dignity and without politics, without accusations and provocations, at least because the Ukrainians declare themselves as ardent followers of European values and tend to be closer to Europe?
Now it is difficult to make any predictions about how the Eurovision will take place in Ukraine, but I believe that the representatives of any civilized society should not hold political battles around any event to tell the world about its development. In addition, the introduction of state educational programs has a much greater impact on the level of culture of the population, rather than carrying out such competitions as the Eurovision.
Sergey Kondrykinskiy, the DPR People’s Council deputy