Tomorrow is the closing date for applications to the Danish Broadcaster DR – for bids to host Eurovision 2014. Aalborg dropped out of the race earlier this week but we still have 4 cities in the running. Each of them have positives and challenges for DR in the hosting of Eurovision 2014. Let’s take a look at each of the bids briefly.
The 4 cities in contention are
Parken – Copenhagen
Copenhagen’s bid is based on the giant Parken Stadium
- Parken Stadium can hold 38,000 seated people
- Parken and Copenhagen have excellent facilities and infrastructure to cope with the large volumes of crew, delegations, press and fans
- Hotels/Accommodation – Copenhagen is a major city and can accommodate all those visiting for the contest
- Strangely Parken is also a con. With 3 live shows to broadcast, will DR be able to fill the arena for the broadcasts?
- The EBU is trying to maintain an intimate Eurovision like that of Malmo – Parken would be a return to a “Big” production.
- Copenhagen has been the host city for the 2 previous outings of Eurovision to Denmark. DR want to make this Eurovision unique so the familiarity of Copenhagen maybe seen as disadvantage to their bid
Boxen – Herning
Herning’s bid is centered on the Boxen Arena
- Boxen successfully hosted this year’s Dansk Melodi Grand Prix to a very high standard
- A brand new state to of the art stadium that can facilitate a high quality stage show and Press Centre
- Capacity of 15,000 people, which is slightly bigger than Malmo – EBU will be happy with that.
- Location – Although Herning is situated in the centre of Central Jutland and is the main rail hub – it would call for most people travelling by air to make 2 flights to get to the city itself (it does have its own airport though 25 km outside of the city) or alternatively a flight and train ride (but we did this in Malm0 this year)
- Size of the city. Herning has a population of 47 thousand if you include Tjørring, Snejbjerg, Lind, Birk, Hammerum, and Gjellerup. Now Millstreet managed this in 1993 in a far smaller town, but the contest was not as big of a production back then. Could the city cope with a huge influx of people?
- Accommodation – on its own Herning would not have ample accommodation but says that it is factoring in the assistance of nearby Århus.
Messe C – Fredericia
Fredericia plan to host Eurovision in the Messe C arena.
- Good hotel capacity – one of the best outside of Copenhagen
- Surrounding towns have claimed that they will lend support to the bid which could make for a variety of social venues for Euro Cafe, Euro Club and Village etc
- The stadium can hold 8,000 people, which would make the show an intimate affair which the EBU may like
- Again the Capacity of the stadium is very small at 8,000 people. I am sure there would be enough local interest in the show to fill that stadium out for the 3 live shows alone
- Accommodation will be tight for the travelling Eurovision network, but they are claiming assistance from neighbouring towns to overcome this.
Fængslet – Horsens
The Horsens bid is centered around the former State Prison.
- Unique setting for the contest
- An independent company is prepared to place a glass roof on the former prison courtyard which would create a usable resource and legacy in the city after the contest.
- Capacity – the venue can hold 13 thousand spectators.
- The surrounding area has a population of over 1 million making it an attractive source of nightlife and venues for functions
- Accommodation – It is unclear how Horsens would facilitate the accommodation requirement on their own. They would have to engage the support of a neighboring city.
- The venue is proposing that the show accommodate 13,000 fans – but all standing. This is problematic for people requiring seating facilities and also for all members of the audience to get a good vantage point. Especially for younger children who will attend the contest – like in Malmo – the seating option is needed. It is a family show after all.
One gets the feeling that Copenhagen is the front-runner. I suspect that DR want to put on a big show – hence them bringing in their production/organisational team so early to start working on the contest. The reaction to Emmelie’s return to Copenhagen was huge and has truly heightened Danish Public interest in the contest. Copenhagen makes logistical sense.
However with Herning putting on such a great National Final this year, DR will know exactly how to stage a contest of this size. Though my heart would like the possibility of being in a decommissioned State Prison in Horsens. If DR want a unique setting then this would fit the bill – however is it a stretch too far? I think Copenhagen will win the race but an upset would be equally welcomed. Submissions have to be formally made to DR by tomorrow and a decision is set to be made by the end of the Summer – as the EBU will have to ratify the decision before DR can announce the Host City.
Where would you like to see the Eurovision 2014 held?
Author/Website co-founder and Editor in Chief Garrett Mulhall
Source – DR and Eurovision Ireland