Iceland unable to perform live at Eurovision due positive COVID result

Iceland’s Daði og Gagnamagnið have pulled out of performing live at the Second Semi-Final of Eurovision 2021 after a member of the band tested positive to COVID-19.

The international song competition is underway in Rotterdam in The Netherlands, and strict COVID protocols are being followed, including regular testing for all the artists and their team members.

“Following a positive test for COVID-19 amongst the Icelandic delegation on Sunday 16 May, the whole team has been in quarantine and undergone PCR testing (on 16 and 19 May).” organisers said in a statement.

“Today (Wednesday 19 May) a member of the Icelandic group Daði og Gagnamagnið also tested positive for COVID-19. The rest of the delegation has again tested negative for COVID-19.

“In close collaboration with the EBU and the host broadcaster, Daði og Gagnamagnið have taken the difficult decision to withdraw from performing in this year’s live Eurovision Song Contest shows, as they only want to perform together as a group.

“Their song will remain in the competition and we will broadcast their rehearsal performance, recorded on the stage on 13 May. The Icelandic delegation will remain in quarantine and be monitored by the Health Authorities.”

The group were the hot favourite to win the 2020 competition with their song Think About Things, but the event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year countries can send the same artist, but they needed to bring a new song.  Daði og Gagnamagnið returned with new tune 10 Years. 

Ahead of each semi-final and the competition’s grand final, there are usually several other shows that are conducted but not broadcast to the viewing public. These include dress rehearsals and performances shared with each country’s judging panel.

The final votes are made up of a combination of the public vote, and a vote from the officials judges of each nation. By the time the contestants reach the Grand Final they’ve usually performed on the stage, usually with full live audience, many times. Organisers also have several recording of each country’s performance ‘in the can’ which can be used as a back-up.

The many rehearsals means that the show usually runs on a tight schedule and any hiccups have usually been removed before the televised broadcast.

While Dadi Feyer and his band won’t be returning to the stage for the remainder of the competition, audiences will still get to see them perform.

OIP Staff, Images: Birta Ran, Tomas Hanses, Andres Putting.

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