Polish delegate tests positive for Covid-19 at Eurovision
THE HAGUE- Agence France Presse
Poland’s singing hopeful Rafal Brzozowski will be absent from the opening of the Eurovision Song Contest on May 16 after a delegation member tested positive for Covid-19, the organizers said Saturday.
Sunday’s "Turquoise carpet" event will launch the glitzy week-long Eurovision competition in Rotterdam, which was canceled last year and scaled-down this year because of the coronavirus pandemic.
"During a routine test upon arrival at the Eurovision Song Contest venue on Saturday 15 May, a member of the Polish delegation tested positive for Covid-19," Eurovision said.
The person has been isolated and as a precaution the rest of the delegation will have a coronavirus test and go into quarantine.
"As a result of this, the Polish delegation will not attend the Turquoise Carpet event in person on Sunday," it said in a statement.
The delegation included Brzozowski, Dutch public broadcaster the NOS reported.
"If the result of the PCR tests are positive, there is a chance that the Polish delegation may not be able to perform on Thursday during the second semifinal," the NOS said.
"In that case, a recording of Poland’s last rehearsal will be shown," it added.
This year’s Eurovision festival is organized with rules imposed by the Dutch government to allow the contest at the port city’s Ahoy Arena to go ahead.
National delegations have to follow strict protocols, remaining separate from the audience and being tested every 48 hours.
Shows including dress rehearsals, two semi-finals and next Saturday’s final will only have 3,500 spectators, around 20 percent of the Ahoy Arena’s capacity.
Known for its flamboyant costumes and cheesy songs, Eurovision is watched by more than 180 million people in over four dozen countries as far afield as Australia.
But the televisual pageant was scrapped for the first time in its six-decade history last year as coronavirus began sweeping the globe.