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Korean-Australian performer Dami Im at Eurovision 2016
Research_

Conference: Eurovision Down Under

The world’s longest-running song contest: Embracing diversity
This interdisciplinary conference celebrates both the Eurovision Song Contest’s 65th birthday and the 5th year of Australian participation. We will explore the secrets of Eurovision’s success and why Australians love it so.

Key dates

Conference: 15-17 April 2020

  • Call for papers open: Now
  • Earlybird registrations close: 6 March 2020
  • Proposals of abstracts close: 24 January 2020
  • Notification of abstract's acceptance: 31 January 2020
  • Standard registrations open: TBC
  • Standard registrations close: 9 April 2020
  • Late registrations close: 9 April 2020

Cost

  • Earlybird registration (by 6 March 2020) : Full $A300; day or student $A100
  • After 6 March : Full $350; day or student $150

About the conference

This is the first international academic conference on the Eurovision Contest to be held in Australia, at one of its leading research universities. The theme of Eurovision Down Under 2020 is: The world’s longest-running song contest: Embracing diversity.

The Eurovision Song Contest has had a growing following in Australia since national multicultural broadcaster SBS began broadcasting the event in 1983. Its 65th anniversary in 2020 is testament to its success, both as light entertainment and as an expression of European cultures, societies and politics.

Since it was first broadcast in 1956, Eurovision has been a platform for national cultural branding and, as such, a site of both celebration and controversy. From the outset, it has provided an often surprisingly controversial window onto Europe and its neighbourhood, reflecting shifting values and current debates. It has also been much discussed – whether lauded or panned – for its ‘Europop’ style, complete with its own unique production values, staging styles and array of languages.

The formal Australian participation, which celebrates its own milestone in 2020 – its fifth year of participation – has opened a new chapter in this story. Australia has brought its own ‘Australpop’ flavours to the Eurovision mix, with Indigenous and Asian-background performers and, most recently, its own opera-pop creation (2019).

This participation has been accompanied by new academic research into this latest chapter in Eurovision’s history, such as:

  • Jessica Carniel, Understanding the Eurovision Song Contest in Multicultural Australia: We Got Love (Palgrave 2018)
  • Chris Hay and Jessica Carniel, Eurovision and Australia: Interdisciplinary Perspectives from Down Under, edited collection (Palgrave 2019)
  • Ben Wellings, Julie Kalman and Keshia Jacotine, Eurovisions: Identity and the International Politics of the Eurovision Song Contest since 1956, edited volume (Palgrave 2019).
  • Ivan Raykoff, co-editor with Robert Dean Tobin, A Song for Europe: Popular Music and Politics in the Eurovision Song Contest (Ashgate 2007/Routledge 2017)
  • Jessica Carniel and Chris Hay, editors of Eurovision and Australia: Interdisciplinary Perspectives from Down Under, edited collection, Palgrave 2019
  • Ivan Raykoff, New School University, New York
  • Jessica Carniel, University of Southern Queensland
  • Chris Hay, University of Queensland
  • Alistair Birch, Journalist and Broadcaster on Eurovision in Australia

We invite papers and panels from both academics and broadcasting and performance practitioners that reflect on any theme related to the Eurovision Song Contest more generally and/or to Australia’s participation, such as:

  • history of Eurovision and/or of Australia’s involvement
  • political and social aspects of Eurovision
  • gender and sexuality at Eurovision
  • ethnicity and ethnic diversity at Eurovision
  • Eurovision and national/cultural/linguistic branding
  • Eurovision and the media (including SBS)
  • Eurovision musical styles
  • Eurovision production/staging/design
  • national pre-Eurovision selection contests.

We welcome contributions from a range of disciplines such as history, European Studies, performance studies, (fashion) design and visual arts, cultural studies, political science, sociology, anthropology, music and musicology, media studies, gender studies, and of course, Australian Studies.

At the conference we will present the edited collection Eurovision & Australia: Interdisciplinary Perspectives from Down Under, which includes chapters by the convenors of this conference, Bronwyn Winter and Nina Markovic Khaze.

Please send your abstracts of no more than 250 words, along with a short (50-75 words) biographical statement by 24 January 2020.

Submit an abstract.

For all enquiries please contact us:
EurovisionOz2020.conference@sydney.edu.au

Co-Convenor

Headshot of Professor Bronwyn Winter
Associate Professor Bronwyn Winter
Academic profile

Co-Convenor

Headshot of Dr Nina Markovic Khaze
Dr Nina Markovic Khaze
Academic profile