By Katie Wright, PA Fashion and Beauty Editor
It’s that time of year again, when we settle down in front of the telly to watch the glorious pop parade that is the Eurovision Song Contest.
Rotterdam is playing host for the grand final on May 22nd, after last year’s competition was postponed due to Covid.
Of course, the music is what matters when it comes to picking a winner, but let’s be honest, who doesn’t love checking out the performers’ weird and wonderful fashion choices? These are just some of the most epic on-stage outfits in Eurovision history…
ABBA were victorious at the 1974 contest with Waterloo, taking to the stage in glitzy satin and suede ensembles. Agnetha Fältskog and Björn Ulvaeus completed their look with knee-high silver platform boots.
Representing Britain in 1978, six-piece pop group Co-Co chose super shimmery clown-inspired, rainbow coloured costumes.
3. Buck’s Fizz
Previously a member of Co-Co, Cheryl Baker returned to Eurovision in 1981 with Buck’s Fizz, taking home the winner’s trophy for Making Your Mind Up. The memorable performance saw singers Bobby G and Mike Nolan whipping off the knee-length skirts of Baker and Jay Aston to reveal mini skirts underneath.
We’re not sure if she was a bit chilly on stage, but Russian contestant Youddiph pulled her flowing red dress over her head like a shawl while performing in the 1994 final in Dublin.
5. Dana International
Opting for the bird of paradise look, 1998’s winner Dana International teamed a plain black gown with a fabulous feathered jacket.
Long-time fans of Eurovision have learned to expect the unexpected. Finnish heavy metal band won in 2006 with Hard Rock Hallelujah, while kitted out in what looked like Halloween monster costumes.
Pop quartet Scooch were ‘Flying The Flag’ for the UK in 2007 with these Britney-esque cabin crew costumes. Sadly, they crash landed at the final in Helsinki, coming joint 22nd out of 24 finalists.
8. Verka Serduchka
Also in 2007, Ukrainian drag singer Verka Serduchka fared significantly better than Scooch, coming in second place with a bonkers but brilliant military-themed performance. The singer donned a silver snakeskin trench coat with a matching star-topped hat and glitterball tie.
9. Conchita Wurst
Austrian winner Conchita Wurst continued Eurovision’s drag tradition in 2014, accessorising her glittering golden gown with glossy hair and a perfectly groomed beard.
10. Netta Barzilai
Combining a multicoloured kimono, sequinned corset, sporty leggings and space buns, 2018 winner Netta Barzilai’s oriental-athleisure outfit was a strong look.
11. Kate Miller-Heidke
Australia has, somewhat confusingly, been allowed to participate in Eurovision since 2015. The nation may not technically be part of Europe, but it sure knows what’s required of a contestant on the fashion front.
In 2019, Kate Miller-Heidke was dolled up in a voluminous fairy princess dress and crown, the singer performing Zero Gravity while being flung from side to side on a long, bendy pole.