List of Eurovision Song Contest winners

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Left: Ralph Siegel, the winning songwriter in 1982 for Germany and composer of twenty-three other entries between 1974 and 2017. Centre: Rolf Løvland, the winning songwriter in 1985 and 1995 for Norway, with Fionnuala Sherry, winning performer in 1995. Right: Luísa Sobral, winning songwriter in 2017 for Portugal.
Left: Lys Assia, the first Eurovision winner (1956), and Dima Bilan, winner in 2008. Centre: Johnny Logan, the winning artist in 1980, winning artist and composer in 1987 and the winning composer in 1992. Right: Loreen celebrating her Eurovision Song Contest 2012 victory in Baku.

68 songs written by 134 songwriters have won the Eurovision Song Contest, an annual competition organised by member countries of the European Broadcasting Union. The contest, which has been broadcast every year since its debut in 1956 (with the exception of 2020), is one of the longest-running television programmes in the world. The contest's winner has been determined using numerous voting techniques throughout its history; centre to these have been the awarding of points to countries by juries or televoters. The country awarded the most points is declared the winner.[1] The first Eurovision Song Contest was not won on points, but by votes (two per country), and only the winner was announced.[2]

There have been 65 contests, with one winner each year except the tied 1969 contest, which had four. Twenty-seven countries have won the contest. Switzerland won the first contest in 1956. The country with the highest number of wins is Ireland, with seven. The only person to have won more than once as performer is Ireland's Johnny Logan, who performed "What's Another Year" in 1980 and "Hold Me Now" in 1987. Logan is also one of only five songwriters to have written more than one winning entry ("Hold Me Now" 1987 and "Why Me?" 1992, performed by Linda Martin).[3] This unique distinction makes Logan the only person to have three Eurovision victories to their credit, as either singer, songwriter or both. The other four songwriters with more than one winning entry to their credit are, Willy van Hemert (Netherlands, 1957 and 1959), Yves Dessca (Monaco, 1971 and Luxembourg, 1972), Rolf Løvland (Norway, 1985 and 1995) and Brendan Graham (Ireland, 1994 and 1996).

Winning the Eurovision Song Contest provides a unique opportunity for the winning artist(s) to capitalise on their success and surrounding publicity by launching or furthering their international career during their singing years. However, throughout the history of the contest, relatively few of these artists have gone on to be huge international stars. The most notable winning Eurovision artists whose career was directly launched into the spotlight following their win were the members of ABBA, who won the 1974 contest for Sweden with their song "Waterloo". ABBA went on to be one of the most successful bands of its time.[4] Another notable winner who subsequently achieved international fame and success was Céline Dion, who won the 1988 contest for Switzerland with the song "Ne partez pas sans moi".

Since 2008, the winner has been awarded an official winner's trophy of the Eurovision Song Contest. The trophy is a handmade piece of sandblasted glass in the shape of a 1950s microphone.[5] The song writers and composers of the winning entry receive smaller versions of the trophy. The original design was created by Kjell Engman of Kosta Boda, who specialises in glass art.[6]

Winners by year[edit]

Year Host City Date Winner Song Performer(s) Songwriter(s) Language Running order (in final) Points
1956 Switzerland Lugano 24 May   Switzerland "Refrain" Lys Assia French 09/14 Not announced
1957 Germany Frankfurt 3 March  Netherlands "Net als toen" Corry Brokken Dutch 06/10 31
1958 Netherlands Hilversum 12 March  France "Dors, mon amour" André Claveau French 03/10 27
1959 France Cannes 11 March  Netherlands "Een beetje" Teddy Scholten
Dutch 05/11 21
1960 United Kingdom London 29 March  France "Tom Pillibi" Jacqueline Boyer French 13/13 32
1961 France Cannes 18 March  Luxembourg "Nous les amoureux" Jean-Claude Pascal French 14/16 31
1962 Luxembourg Luxembourg 18 March  France "Un premier amour" Isabelle Aubret French 09/16 26
1963 United Kingdom London 23 March  Denmark "Dansevise" Grethe and Jørgen Ingmann Danish 08/16 42
1964 Denmark Copenhagen 21 March  Italy "Non ho l'età" Gigliola Cinquetti Italian 12/16 49
1965 Italy Naples 20 March  Luxembourg "Poupée de cire, poupée de son" France Gall Serge Gainsbourg French 15/18 32
1966 Luxembourg Luxembourg 5 March  Austria "Merci, Chérie" Udo Jürgens German 09/18 31
1967 Austria Vienna 8 April  United Kingdom "Puppet on a String" Sandie Shaw English 11/17 47
1968 United Kingdom London 6 April  Spain "La, la, la" Massiel
Spanish 15/17 29
1969 Spain Madrid 29 March  France "Un jour, un enfant" Frida Boccara French 14/16 18
 Netherlands "De troubadour" Lenny Kuhr Dutch 08/16
 Spain "Vivo cantando" Salomé Spanish 03/16
 United Kingdom "Boom Bang-a-Bang" Lulu English 07/16
1970 Netherlands Amsterdam 21 March  Ireland "All Kinds of Everything" Dana English 12/12 32
1971 Republic of Ireland Dublin 3 April  Monaco "Un banc, un arbre, une rue" Séverine French 03/18 128
1972 United Kingdom Edinburgh 25 March  Luxembourg "Après toi" Vicky Leandros French 17/18 128
1973 Luxembourg Luxembourg 7 April  Luxembourg "Tu te reconnaîtras" Anne-Marie David French 11/17 129
1974 United Kingdom Brighton 6 April  Sweden "Waterloo" ABBA English 08/17 24
1975 Sweden Stockholm 22 March  Netherlands "Ding-a-dong" Teach-In English 01/19 152
1976 Netherlands The Hague 3 April  United Kingdom "Save Your Kisses for Me" Brotherhood of Man English 01/18 164
1977 United Kingdom London 7 May  France "L'oiseau et l'enfant" Marie Myriam French 18/18 136
1978 France Paris 22 April  Israel "A-Ba-Ni-Bi" Izhar Cohen and the Alphabeta Hebrew 18/20 157
1979 Israel Jerusalem 31 March  Israel "Hallelujah" Milk and Honey Hebrew 10/19 125
1980 Netherlands The Hague 19 April  Ireland "What's Another Year" Johnny Logan English 17/19 143
1981 Republic of Ireland Dublin 4 April  United Kingdom "Making Your Mind Up" Bucks Fizz English 14/20 136
1982 United Kingdom Harrogate 24 April  Germany "Ein bißchen Frieden" Nicole German 18/18 161
1983 Germany Munich 23 April  Luxembourg "Si la vie est cadeau" Corinne Hermès French 20/20 142
1984 Luxembourg Luxembourg 5 May  Sweden "Diggi-Loo Diggi-Ley" Herreys Swedish 01/19 145
1985 Sweden Gothenburg 4 May  Norway "La det swinge" Bobbysocks! Norwegian 13/19 123
1986 Norway Bergen 3 May  Belgium "J'aime la vie" Sandra Kim French 13/20 176
1987 Belgium Brussels 9 May  Ireland "Hold Me Now" Johnny Logan
  • Johnny Logan
English 20/22 172
1988 Republic of Ireland Dublin 30 April   Switzerland "Ne partez pas sans moi" Céline Dion French 09/21 137
1989 Switzerland Lausanne 6 May  Yugoslavia "Rock Me" Riva Croatian 22/22 137
1990 Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Zagreb 5 May  Italy "Insieme: 1992" Toto Cutugno Italian 19/22 149
1991 Italy Rome 4 May  Sweden "Fångad av en stormvind" Carola Swedish 08/22 146
1992 Sweden Malmö 9 May  Ireland "Why Me" Linda Martin
  • Johnny Logan
English 17/23 155
1993 Republic of Ireland Millstreet 15 May  Ireland "In Your Eyes" Niamh Kavanagh English 14/25 187
1994 Republic of Ireland Dublin 30 April  Ireland "Rock 'n' Roll Kids" Paul Harrington and Charlie McGettigan English 03/25 226
1995 Republic of Ireland Dublin 13 May  Norway "Nocturne" Secret Garden
Norwegian 05/23 148
1996 Norway Oslo 18 May  Ireland "The Voice" Eimear Quinn
  • Brendan Graham
English 17/23 162
1997 Republic of Ireland Dublin 3 May  United Kingdom "Love Shine a Light" Katrina and the Waves English 24/25 227
1998 United Kingdom Birmingham 9 May  Israel "Diva" Dana International Hebrew 08/25 172
1999 Israel Jerusalem 29 May  Sweden "Take Me to Your Heaven" Charlotte Nilsson English 15/23 163
2000 Sweden Stockholm 13 May  Denmark "Fly on the Wings of Love" Olsen Brothers English 14/24 195
2001 Denmark Copenhagen 12 May  Estonia "Everybody" Tanel Padar, Dave Benton and 2XL English 20/23 198
2002 Estonia Tallinn 25 May  Latvia "I Wanna" Marie N English 23/24 176
2003 Latvia Riga 24 May  Turkey "Everyway That I Can" Sertab Erener
English 04/26 167
2004[N 1] Turkey Istanbul 15 May  Ukraine "Wild Dances" Ruslana English, Ukrainian 10/24 280
2005 Ukraine Kyiv 21 May  Greece "My Number One" Helena Paparizou English 19/24 230
2006 Greece Athens 20 May  Finland "Hard Rock Hallelujah" Lordi English 17/24 292
2007 Finland Helsinki 12 May  Serbia "Molitva" Marija Šerifović Serbian 17/24 268
2008[N 2] Serbia Belgrade 24 May  Russia "Believe" Dima Bilan
English 24/25 272
2009 Russia Moscow 16 May  Norway "Fairytale" Alexander Rybak
  • Alexander Rybak
English 20/25 387
2010 Norway Oslo 29 May  Germany "Satellite" Lena English 22/25 246
2011 Germany Düsseldorf 14 May  Azerbaijan "Running Scared" Ell and Nikki English 19/25 221
2012 Azerbaijan Baku 26 May  Sweden "Euphoria" Loreen English 17/26 372
2013 Sweden Malmö 18 May  Denmark "Only Teardrops" Emmelie de Forest English 18/26 281
2014 Denmark Copenhagen 10 May  Austria "Rise Like a Phoenix" Conchita Wurst English 11/26 290
2015 Austria Vienna 23 May  Sweden "Heroes" Måns Zelmerlöw English 10/27 365
2016 Sweden Stockholm 14 May  Ukraine "1944" Jamala
  • Jamala
English, Crimean Tatar 21/26 534
2017 Ukraine Kyiv 13 May  Portugal "Amar pelos dois" Portuguese 11/26 758
2018 Portugal Lisbon 12 May  Israel "Toy" Netta English[N 3] 22/26 529
2019 Israel Tel Aviv 18 May  Netherlands "Arcade" Duncan Laurence
  • Duncan Laurence
  • Joel Sjöö
  • Wouter Hardy
  • Will Knox
English 12/26 498
2020 Contest cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic
2021 Netherlands Rotterdam 22 May  Italy "Zitti e buoni" Måneskin
Italian 24/26 524

Performers and songwriters with multiple wins[edit]

The following individuals have won the Eurovision Song Contest as a performer or songwriter more than once. Bold indicates a win as a performer. Italics indicates a win as a songwriter.

Wins Name Years
3 Johnny Logan 1980, 1987, 1992
2 Willy van Hemert 1957, 1959
Yves Dessca 1971, 1972
Rolf Løvland 1985, 1995
Brendan Graham 1994, 1996

Observations[edit]

Eleven Eurovision winners (alongside three non-winners) featured at the Congratulations concert in 2005, in which ABBA's "Waterloo" was voted the most popular song of the contest's first fifty years.[7]

Ireland has finished first seven times, more than any other country. Ireland also won the contest for three consecutive years (1992, 1993, 1994), the only country to ever do so. Three countries have won twice in a row: Spain (1968 and 1969), Luxembourg (1972 and 1973) and Israel (1978 and 1979). Serbia is the only country to win with its debut entry (in 2007), although Serbia had competed previously as part of Yugoslavia and Serbia and Montenegro. By contrast, Portugal holds the record for waiting the longest to achieve their first win, doing so in 2017; 53 years after their first appearance in the contest. Austria holds the record for longest wait in between wins, having won for the first time in 1966 and a second time in 2014. Under the voting system used between 1975 and 2015, the winner of the contest was decided by the final voting nation on eleven occasions.[N 4]

Changes to the voting system, including a steady growth in the number of countries participating and voting, means that the points earned are not comparable across the decades. Portugal's Salvador Sobral holds the record of the highest number of points in the contest's history, earning 758 with the song "Amar pelos dois". Norway's Alexander Rybak holds the largest margin of victory in absolute points, a 169-point cushion over second place in 2009. Italy's Gigliola Cinquetti holds the record for largest victory by percentage, scoring almost three times as many as second place (49 points compared with 17 by the runner-up) in the 1964 contest. The lowest winning score is the 18 points (of the 160 total votes cast by 16 countries) scored by each of the four winning countries in 1969.

Under the voting system used from 1975 until 2015, in which each country gives maximum points to its first place choice, Sweden's Loreen won Eurovision 2012 with the most ever first place votes earned, receiving first place votes from 18 of 41 countries (excluding themselves). The 1976 United Kingdom entrant, Brotherhood of Man with the song "Save Your Kisses For Me" holds the record of the highest average score per participating country, with an average of 9.65 points received per country. 2011 winner Azerbaijan Ell & Nikki, hold the lowest average score for a winning song under that system, receiving 5.14 points per country.

In 2016, Jamala's "1944" became the first winning entry since the jury vote was introduced alongside the televote starting in 2009 to place first in neither area, coming second in the jury vote behind Australia and second in the televote behind Russia. Duncan Laurence's "Arcade" became the second such winner in the 2019 contest, having placed third behind North Macedonia and Sweden in the jury vote, and second behind Norway in the televote.

Around 2/3 of the winning songs were performed in the second half of the gala. According to the official statistics, until 2019, only 34.3% of the winning songs were performed in the first half, including 3 of the 4 winners in 1969. The only song to win without being clearly in one half or the other was the Israeli entry Hallelujah in 1979, which was drawn 10th out of 19 songs. Between 2005 to 2013, all the winning songs were performed in the second half of the Grand Final’s running order.[8]

The United Kingdom has finished second fifteen times at Eurovision (most recently in 1998), more than any other country. France has finished third and fourth seven times at Eurovision (most recently respectively in 1981 and in 2001), and Sweden has finished fifth nine times at Eurovision (most recently in 2019). The most successful country[when defined as?] never to have won the contest is Malta, having finished second in 2002 and 2005 and third in 1992 and 1998. Another island nation Iceland has also finished second twice, in 1999 and 2009. With Portugal achieving its first win in 2017, Malta now also holds the record for longest wait for a first win, having first shown up in the contest in 1971 (although Cyprus has more winless appearances, with 36 since debuting in 1981, due to Malta taking a break from 1976 through 1990). Spain holds the current record for longest drought by a winning country, having last won in 1969. They are followed by France (1977) and Belgium (1986).

There is no official runner-up for two of the contests – 1956 and 1969. In 1956 only the winner, Switzerland, was announced, whilst there were speculative reports that Germany ended up in second place with "Im Wartesaal zum großen Glück" by Walter Andreas Schwarz,[citation needed] given that Germany was chosen to host the 1957 contest. In 1969, four songs shared first place by achieving the same number of points; fifth place was achieved by Switzerland, which is not considered an official runner-up, because of the draw for first place.

Winners by country[edit]

Map showing each country's number of Eurovision wins up to and including 2021.[N 5]
Table key
Inactive Countries that have participated in the past, but did not participate in the most recent contest, or will not participate in the upcoming contest.
Former Former countries that have been dissolved.
Wins Country Years
7  Ireland 1970, 1980, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996
6  Sweden 1974, 1984, 1991, 1999, 2012, 2015
5  France 1958, 1960, 1962, 1969, 1977
 Luxembourg 1961, 1965, 1972, 1973, 1983
 United Kingdom 1967, 1969, 1976, 1981, 1997
 Netherlands 1957, 1959, 1969, 1975, 2019
4  Israel 1978, 1979, 1998, 2018
3  Norway 1985, 1995, 2009
 Denmark 1963, 2000, 2013
 Italy 1964, 1990, 2021
2  Spain 1968, 1969
  Switzerland 1956, 1988
 Germany 1982, 2010
 Austria 1966, 2014
 Ukraine 2004, 2016
1  Monaco 1971
 Belgium 1986
 Yugoslavia 1989
 Estonia 2001
 Latvia 2002
 Turkey 2003
 Greece 2005
 Finland 2006
 Serbia 2007
 Russia 2008
 Azerbaijan 2011
 Portugal 2017

The year 1969 is in italics to indicate a joint (4-way) win.

Winners by language[edit]

  English (46.42%)
  French (20.32%)
  Hebrew (5.82%)
  Italian (4.32%)
  Dutch (4.32%)
  German (2.92%)
  Norwegian (2.92%)
  Swedish (2.92%)
  Spanish (2.92%)
  Danish (1.42%)
  Ukrainian (1.42%)
  Croatian (1.42%)
  Serbian (1.42%)
  Crimean Tatar (1.42%)
  Portuguese (1.42%)

Between 1966 and 1973, and again between 1977 and 1998, countries were only permitted to perform in their own language; see the main Eurovision Song Contest article.

Wins Language Years Countries
33 English 1967, 1969, 1970, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1980, 1981, 1987, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004,[N 6] 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,[N 7] 2018,[N 3] 2019 United Kingdom, Ireland, Sweden, Netherlands, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Turkey, Ukraine,[N 6][N 7] Greece, Finland, Russia, Norway, Germany, Azerbaijan, Austria, Israel
14 French 1956, 1958, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1965, 1969, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1977, 1983, 1986, 1988 Switzerland, France, Luxembourg, Monaco, Belgium
4 Hebrew 1978, 1979, 1998, 2018[N 3] Israel
3 Dutch 1957, 1959, 1969 Netherlands
Italian 1964, 1990, 2021 Italy
2 German 1966, 1982 Austria, Germany
Spanish 1968, 1969 Spain
Swedish 1984, 1991 Sweden
Norwegian 1985, 1995 Norway
1 Danish 1963 Denmark
Croatian[N 8] 1989 Yugoslavia
Ukrainian 2004[N 6] Ukraine[N 6]
Serbian[N 8] 2007 Serbia
Crimean Tatar 2016[N 7] Ukraine[N 7]
Portuguese 2017 Portugal

Gallery[edit]

Performers[edit]

Songwriters[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Between 2004 and 2007, the contest included a single televised semi-final::— In 2004 the semi-final was held on the Wednesday before the final. Between 2005 and 2007 the semi-final was held on the Thursday of "Eurovision Week"
  2. ^ Since 2008 the contest has included two semi-finals, held on the Tuesday and Thursday before the final.
  3. ^ a b c This song contains several words in Hebrew.
  4. ^ Those occasions were in 1979, 1980, 1981, 1984, 1988, 1991, 1993, 1998, 2002 and 2003.
  5. ^ Yugoslavia's 1989 victory is shown in the lower inset.
  6. ^ a b c d This song was partially sung in Ukrainian.
  7. ^ a b c d This song was partially sung in Crimean Tatar.
  8. ^ a b Croatian (the language of the 1989 winning song) and Serbian (the language of the 2007 winning song) are fully mutually intelligible and often considered varieties of a single language, Serbo-Croatian. However, they are listed separately in Eurovision statistics.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Extract from the rules for the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest" (PDF). Eurovision.tv. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 May 2007. Retrieved 22 August 2007.
  2. ^ "Eurovision 1956". Eurovision.tv. Archived from the original on 28 May 2008. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  3. ^ O'Connor, John Kennedy (2007). The Eurovision Song Contest – The Official History. Carlton Books, UK. ISBN 978-1-84442-994-3.
  4. ^ "ABBA's Bjorn says no to reunion". BBC News. 6 December 2005. Retrieved 15 March 2008.
  5. ^ "Eurovision Crystal Trophy". Kosta Boda. Retrieved 31 May 2019.
  6. ^ "Trophy". Eurovision Song Contest. Retrieved 31 May 2019.
  7. ^ "ABBA win 'Eurovision 50th' vote". BBC News. 23 October 2005. Retrieved 22 August 2007.
  8. ^ "The winner always comes from the second half?". Eurovision.tv. 17 October 2019. Retrieved 27 May 2021.

Bibliography[edit]