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The Eurovision Song Contest returns to its spiritual home this week, as host city Malmö gets ready to transform itself into the
‘capital of kitsch’.
Expecting as many as 100,000 visitors this weekend, the Malmö tourist office is ‘rolling out the pink carpet’ with scheduled performances from local artistes at the Eurovillage, based in the city’s centre.
There, lucky punters might also get a glimpse of Swedish singer Carola, who won the competition in 1991. As the star explains, this not only proved a momentous moment for her but also imprinted Eurovision into the hearts and minds of the Swedish people, forever more: “With that breakthrough that I had when I was 16 that was so incredibly strong actually really turned my whole life around from when I was 16 years old I will always in Scandinavia be remembered for that and probably in other Eurovision countries too.”
In the wake of several low ranking performances over the last decade, Sweden took emergency measures; installing an international jury of experts to ensure the people’s choice-entry also appealed to Europe as a whole.
Cue controversy this year, when the jury vetoed the public’s pick – Yohio, an an androgynous 17-year-old who likes to wear Lolita dresses – instead pinning the nation’s hopes of victory on Robin Stjernberg.