Eurovision 2022: a BBC interview with Graham Norton and Ken Bruce

May 9, 2022

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As Eurovision week gets going, the BBC have caught up with the United Kingdom's Eurovision commentator, Graham Norton and BBC Radio 2 host Ken Bruce

Just like that, Eurovision is back! What makes Eurovision so special to you?

Graham: “I’ve always loved Eurovison but somehow over the last few years it has become even more special. I find the idea of fans and families coming together during dark times to celebrate music across the continent extremely moving.”

Ken: “It’s a glorious mish-mash of nations, musical styles and abilities. Above all, it’s always unpredictable.”

Have you ever been to Turin before?

Graham: “I think so, but there was wine involved so I have very little recollection.”

Ken: “I visited Turin many years ago on holiday so I’m sure I’ll recognise some of the sights, but I might be too busy keeping my ear on the music.”

What do you think about the UK entry this year?

Graham: “Sam Ryder is a star! I honestly think he is our best hope for years. He has been getting a great response around Europe as he promotes Spaceman, so fingers crossed for some points this year!”

Ken: “Sam is a great singer and writer and it’s a song that deserves to end up at or near the very top.”

Who are the ones to watch in this year’s contest?

Graham: “I really think Italy might do that rarest of things and walk away triumphant for the second year in a row. That song is huge!”

How does Eurovision compare to your other work throughout the year?

Graham: “Eurovision is unlike anything else I do. There is so much preparation, becoming familiar with all the songs and researching the various acts but then you sit down to present live television for over three hours and anything can happen. It is exciting and nerve wracking in equal measure!”

Ken: “It’s a moment of brightness, joy and dazzling excess – compared to the daily ritual of waiting by the Wogan House coffee machine!”

Do you have any Eurovision traditions?

Graham: “Not really. I make sure I’ve been to the toilet and only start drinking at song number nine as Sir Terry decreed.”

Ken: “Every year I find myself uttering the phrase, “I should have gone to bed two hours ago.”

What are your favourite Eurovision memories?

Graham: “For me, it has to be the night when Conchitta won the competition for Austria – not a dry eye in the house.”

Ken: “The night Katrina and the Waves won for the UK in 1997. I can picture the moment still.”

What is it about Eurovision that makes people fall in love with it?

Graham: “Eurovision really is unique – as daft as it is deadly serious. I describe it as profound nonsense and I wouldn’t change a thing.”

Ken: “The fact that it’s so resolutely unserious. We need more fun and pure escapism in our lives.”

You can find Graham Norton providing the BBC’s commentary for the Eurovision 2022 grand final on Saturday May 14th, and Ken Bruce providing commentary on BBC Radio 2.

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