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Bambie Thug performs the song Doomsday Blue during the dress rehearsal yesterday. Alamy Stock Photo
Grand Final

Bambie Thug competing at Eurovision after performance thrown into doubt due to EBU row

This year’s Eurovision has been beset by controversy.


IRISH EUROVISION CONTESTANT Bambie Thug’s participation in tonight’s final had remained an open question until the start of the event in Malmo, Sweden.

The singer said in a statement on social media just hours before the show started that they were awaiting word from the European Broadcasting Union on an alleged breach of rules by Israeli TV commentators during their semi-final performance.

Bambie Thug did not give a performance at a dress rehearsal known as the Family Show this afternoon.

The Irish singer also did not take part in the flag parade at the start of the rehearsal this afternoon, telling their fanbase, or “coven”, on Instagram that there was “a situation” that needed “urgent attention” from the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), which came up while they were waiting to got on stage.

Without giving any further details, the Instagram post said: “The EBU have taken this matter seriously and we have been in discussion about what action needs to be taken.”

Bambie Thug apologised to those fans who had come to see their performance at the dress rehearsal. 

“I hope to see you on the stage tonight,” the post read, referring to the final that kicks off at 8pm this evening. 

Bambie Thug has posted again before the show started saying that they have raised “multiple complaints” with the EBU about “instances” the singer has experienced over the last few days. 

The complaint involved the commentary from Israeli TV broadcaster KAN. 

Bambie Thug said that the EBU confirmed that KAN’s commentators had “broken the rules of conduct during the semi-final 1″.

“I have been patiently waiting to hear what action is set to be taken by the EBU following this rule break. I have since seen a statement by EBU Director General Noel Curran which contradicts this earlier confirmation,” the Instagram post said. 

“I am still waiting for an official update from the EBU.” 

Curran earlier gave an interview to Swedish national broadcaster SVT, which is hosting the competition in Malmo this year. Curran said that the Israeli broadcaster has not broken any of the EBU’s rules regarding the competition.

In a clip of the interview posted online by SVT, Curran described KAN as a broadcaster that had come under immense pressure from the Israeli government in recent years – adding that they had been allowed to continue in the competition as it was found that they had not broken any rules. The question is not included in the edit posted online, and it’s not clear if Curran was asked about any events that took place at the contest today. 

The Journal has contacted a representative for Noel Curran requesting a comment.   

In a statement this afternoon, the EBU said: “Bambie Thug did not perform in Dress Rehearsal 3 and the footage of their performance in Dress Rehearsal 2 was used in its place.

“They missed the dress rehearsal due to a situation that is currently being discussed with the EBU and Song Contest organisers.

“We hope that this will be resolved shortly and Bambie Thug will appear in the Grand Final Show as planned.”

Bambie Thug IG screeshot The Instagram post from Bambie Thug. Instagram screenshot Instagram screenshot

Bambie Thug told RTÉ earlier that they had raised an issue with Israeli TV commentary about their performance at the contest.

“There’s a lot more anger and a lot more drive in me now,” Bambie Thug said in an interview with RTÉ News, adding that in their opinion Israel should not be allowed to be allowed to take further part in the contest. 

According to RTÉ’s report a commentator on KAN warned TV viewers with children tuning in on Tuesday that Bambie Thug’s performance would be “the most scary” of the show

“There will be a lot of spells and black magic and dark clothing, Satanic symbols, and voodoo dolls,” the commentator said. 

They added that there was some controversy about the song in Ireland and that the singer also liked to “speak negatively about Israel”.

This year’s Eurovision has been beset by controversy, mostly due to the presence of Israel at the competition as it continues its seven-month war on the Gaza Strip in Palestine.

Dutch artist Joost Klein was kicked out of the competition today amid a police investigation into an incident earlier this week.

There was booing in the arena yesterday when it was announced he would not be performing. Hundreds of Dutch fans are in Malmö for the Eurovision.

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David MacRedmond and Daragh Brophy