YouTube [Eurovision Song Contest]

TikTok star Sam Ryder reassured fans that the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest will still honour and celebrate Ukraine. 

Back in May, Kalush Orchestra won the title of this year’s competition for Ukraine with its song Stefania after receiving a total of 631 points. 

However, due to Russia’s ongoing invasion of the country, the show’s organisers announced that the 2023 competition would be held in the UK on behalf of Ukraine.

Martin Österdahl, the Eurovision Song Contest’s Executive Supervisor, said in a statement: “We’re exceptionally grateful that the BBC has accepted to stage the Eurovision Song Contest in the UK in 2023.

“The BBC has taken on hosting duties for other winning countries on four previous occasions.

“Continuing in this tradition of solidarity, we know that next year’s Contest will showcase the creativity and skill of one of Europe’s most experienced public broadcasters whilst ensuring this year’s winners, Ukraine, are celebrated and represented throughout the event.”

While the news has received mixed responses from fans and political officials, Ryder has assured viewers that next year’s competition will honour Ukraine to the fullest. 

“Hey, friends. Just a couple thoughts. It’s Ukraine’s party. We’re just inviting them to throw it at our house,” he said in a video via social media.  

“I know how much it meant to Kallush and the Ukrainian delegation that Eurovision would be held at home in Ukraine next year, and I’m not the only one whose heart is heavy knowing that that can’t be the case at this moment in time. 

“But what I would love to say to anyone watching this from Ukraine is that we know how to throw a party here in the UK, and our excitement is outshone only by our focus on the one sole objective.

“To hold space and be on hand to help wherever needed to host an event that celebrates Ukrainian culture, history and music and to stand in solidarity with the rest of the globe, shining a unified light. 

At the end of his statement, he described the UK as “loving facilitators” before promising fans that the UK would come together “in the spirit of unity.” 

During this year’s contest, Ryder wowed fans with his performance of his track Space Man – which resulted in the UK landing in the runner-up position.