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Member station "Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation (ERT)
National selection events
Participation summary
Appearances 39 (37 finals)
First appearance "1974
Best result 1st: "2005
Worst result 16th SF: "2016
External links
ERT Page
Greece's page at Eurovision.tv
""Song contest current event.png For the most recent participation see
"Greece in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018

Greece has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 39 times since its debut in "1974, missing six contests in that time (1975, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1999 and 2000). Greece's first win came in 2005 with ""My Number One", sung by "Elena Paparizou. The Greek "national broadcaster, "Ellinikí Radiofonía Tileórasi (ERT), broadcasts the event each year and organises the process for the selection of the Greek entry.[1] Greece has never finished last in the contest.

Throughout the 20th century, Greece achieved only two top five results, finishing fifth with Pachalis, Marianna, Robert and "Bessy in "1977 and again fifth with "Kleopatra in "1992. The start of the 21st century saw Greece become one of the most successful countries in the contest, with ten top-ten results between 2000 and 2013, including third-place finishes for "Antique in "2001 (with 2005 winner Paparizou as lead singer), "Sakis Rouvas in "2004 and "Kalomira in "2008.

In the last five contests (2014–18), Greece has not reached the top ten, including twice failing to qualify from the semi-final to the grand final ("2016, "2018).



After debuting in the "1974 Contest, Greece did not participate in "1975 for "unknown reasons" according to the "EBU, but it was discovered that the withdrawal was in protest of Turkey's debut and its "invasion of Cyprus in 1974.[2][3] Greece was disqualified from the "Eurovision Song Contest 1982 after it was revealed that Themis Adamantidis was to sing "Sarantapente Kopelies" (Σαρανταπέντε Κοπελιές), a previously released song. A known Greek folk song, it had been revised for the competition, but this violated the rules which stated that all songs had to be original in terms of songwriting and instrumentation and cannot be "cover songs. Greece was forced to pay a fine and was allowed to return the following year.[4] Had Adamantidis been allowed to perform "Sarantapente Kopelies", he would have appeared second at "Harrogate.[5] After returning in 1983, ERT decided that all of the possible songs were of "low quality" and decided not to participate in the "Eurovision Song Contest 1984.

Greece returned once again to the Contest in 1985, and "Polina was picked in the 1986 national selection to represent Greece at the "Eurovision Song Contest 1986 in "Bergen, "Norway, but ERT pulled out of the Contest unexpectedly. Polina stated that it was due to political troubles in Greece at the time,[6] but she noted that a Eurovision website had learned that the real reason was that the Contest was to be held the night before "Orthodox Easter.[6] Had she performed, she would have appeared eighteenth and she would have performed the song "Wagon-lit".[6][7]

Greece returned to the Contest in 1987 and performed each year until the "Eurovision Song Contest 1999, when it as not permitted to participate because its five-year points average had fallen under the limit for participation after Thalassa's 20th-place finish in 1998. The following year, ERT announced that it would not return at the "Eurovision Song Contest 2000 due to financial reasons.

Thirty-one years after its debut, Greece won for the first time in 2005 with "Elena Paparizou singing ""My Number One", which tied for the record for the most number of twelve points allocated to a song (ten in total) along with "Katrina and the Waves' "1997 ""Love Shine A Light". The song also made Greece the first country not a member of "Big Four to win the contest without going through a semifinal. After Eurovision, the song topped the charts in Greece, "Cyprus and "Sweden and entered the top ten in "Romania, the "Netherlands, "Hungary, "Belgium, as well as the "American "Billboard "Hot Dance Club Play Chart. In 2005, Eurovision held a commemorative program, "Congratulations, to celebrate 50 years of the contest, in which "My Number One" came fourth in a vote for the show's most popular entry, behind ""Hold Me Now" (1987), ""Nel blu dipinto di blu" (1958) and "ABBA's ""Waterloo" (1974).

Before Greece's win, the highest score was third place, achieved by duo "Antique (of which Elena Paparizou was a member) in 2001 with ""Die for You" and then again by "Sakis Rouvas in 2004 with ""Shake It". Greece's least successful result was at 20th place in 1998 with the song ""Mia Krifi Evesthisia" (English, "A Hidden Sensibility") by "Thalassa, with 12 points, all from Cyprus and in 2014 with the song ""Rise Up" by "Freaky Fortune feat. "RiskyKidd, with 35 points, but this time Cyprus was out of the contest.

In 2006, the "51st Eurovision Song Contest was held in "Athens, Greece, following Elena Paparizou's victory the previous year. The two hosts were popular singer, and former contestant, "Sakis Rouvas and "Greek American presenter "Maria Menounos. The singer representing Greece in their own country was popular "Greek Cypriot artist "Anna Vissi.

From 2004 to 2006, ERT had selected high-profile artists internally and set up national finals to choose the song, while in "2007 and "2008 it held a televised national final to choose both the song and performer. For the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest, ERT was able to secure a high-profile artist once again and planned a national final to choose the song.[8]

Greece has been one of the most successful countries in the Eurovision Song Contest in the 21st century, ten times finishing in the top-ten.[9] including ninth in "2006, seventh in "2007, third in "2008, seventh in "2009, eighth in "2010 and seventh in "2011. After "Eleftheria Eleftheriou placed 17th in "2012 with her song ""Aphrodisiac", Greece achieved its 10th top-ten result of the century and 18th in total in "2013, finishing sixth with the song "Alcohol is Free". In "2014, Greece finished in 20th place, which, along with 1998, is the countries worst result in the contest.[10] Greece was one of only three countries (along with Romania and Russia) to have never failed to qualify from the semifinals since their 2004 introduction (2004–15). In addition, Greece also qualified from the 1996 audio-only pre-qualifying round. In "2015, Greece failed to reach the top-ten for the third time in four years, finishing 19th.

From 2013 through 2015, the music channel "MAD produced the Greek national final.

For 2016, ERT selected the Eurovision entry internally. They selected the band Argo with the song "Utopian Land"[11] For the first time since the semi-finals were introduced in 2004, Greece failed to qualify for the final. They finished 16th in the first semi-final.

In 2017, ERT selected the composer "Dimitris Kontopoulos and the choreographer Fokas Evangelinos internally. They chose "Demy (singer) for representing Greece in Kiev. ERT agreed, and on the 6 March 2017, Greece chose their song via a national final. Three songs were competed: "Angels", ""This Is Love" and "When The Morning Comes Around". The final result was combined by 70% from televoting and by 30% from international juries from nine countries. Finally, ""This Is Love" gained 70% and won the national final. At Eurovision, she was qualified for the Grand Final, where she finished in 19th place with 77 points. In the semi-final she was finished in 10th place.


"Cyprus and Greece are commonly accused of favouring each other and of all the countries, statistics suggest they are the most likely to vote for each other. "Wogan seemed to sum it up when Cyprus awarded Greece 12 points in last year's contest. 'Over the years people say this is ludicrous [...] but still they do it. They just don't care.' "

Ruth Alexander, "The maths of Eurovision voting", "BBC News[12]

Greece is famous for, especially in recent years, always giving twelve points to "Cyprus and always receiving twelve points from Cyprus. This is one of many examples of the bloc voting seen in contest which also occurs between "Iberian, "Balkan, "Scandinavian, ex-"Soviet and "Baltic countries. In the case of Greece and Cyprus, the exchange of twelve points is probably because the majority of Cypriot citizens are Greeks thus sharing linguistic ties (speaking "Greek) and musical taste. Furthermore, Greece and Cyprus share the same music industry. Due to the controversies caused by political voting, two semi-finals were introduced for the "2008 Contest in which Cyprus and Greece were unable to vote for each other in the semi-finals.[13] In the build-up to the 2008 contest, however, the artists representing Greece and Cyprus jointly held a successful warm-up party at the "Euroclub, attended by 17 other delegations from the contest and 1500 guests attracted by the promised "confluence of the Greek-Cypriot sound".[14] However, for the first time ever in "2015 Greece and Cyprus did not give each other 12 points, with Greece giving "Cyprus 10 points and "Cyprus giving Greece only 8 points, and curiously both countries gave the maximum to Italy.

Popularity of the Contest[edit]

Until 2001, Greece was seen as one of the least successful countries in the Contest, and therefore the interest of Greek people in the Contest was relatively low. Since "Antique's third place in 2001, the contest has grown into one of the most popular events in Greece with an estimated five million viewers each year. The high expectations of the Greek public has led to seeing the Contest as a "national affair" of very big importance, and this has caused controversy. The Greek viewers expect their singers to qualify from the semi-final to the final and place inside the Top 10, except from one 17th place: in 2012 for the first time since the introduction of the semifinals failed to place in the Top 10 in Baku. In 2013 Greece was again in top 10 finishing 6th. They are the second most successful country, behind "Russia, in the contest between 2000 and 2009, with one win and three third places. Since 2014 their perfomance has declined, having failed to finish in the top 10 four consecutive years. In 2016, Greece failed to qualify for the first time since the introduction of the semifinals in 2004 with the group "Argo, breaking their qualification record. This was the first year Greece was absent from the final since 2000.


The following table lists the thirty-three entries which competed for Greece in the Eurovision Song Contest.

Table key
  Second place
  Third place
  Last place
Year Artist Language Title Final Points Semi Points
"1974 "Marinella "Greek ""Krasi, thalassa ke t'agori mou" (Κρασί, θάλασσα και τ'αγόρι μου) 11 7 No semi-finals
"1975 Did not participate
"1976 "Mariza Koch Greek ""Panagia mou, panagia mou" (Παναγιά μου, παναγιά μου) 13 20
"1977 Paschalis, Marianna, Robert and "Bessy Greek ""Mathima solfege" (Μάθημα σολφέζ) 5 92
"1978 "Tania Tsanaklidou Greek ""Charlie Chaplin" (Τσάρλυ Τσάπλιν) 8 66
"1979 "Elpida Greek ""Sokratis" (Σωκράτης) 8 69
"1980 "Anna Vissi & The "Epikouri Greek ""Autostop" (Ωτοστόπ) 13 30
"1981 "Yiannis Dimitras Greek ""Feggari kalokerino" (Φεγγάρι καλοκαιρινό) 8 55
"1982 Themis Adamantidis Greek "Sarantapente kopelies" (Σαρανταπέντε κοπελιές) Withdrawn
"1983 "Kristi Stassinopoulou Greek ""Mou les" (Μου λες) 14 32
"1984 Did not participate
"1985 "Takis Biniaris Greek ""Moiazoume" (Μοιάζουμε) 16 15
"1986 "Polina Greek "Wagon-lit" (Βαγκόν λι) Withdrawn
"1987 "Bang Greek ""Stop" (Στοπ) 10 64
"1988 "Afroditi Frida Greek ""Clown" (Κλόουν) 17 10
"1989 "Mariana Efstratiou Greek ""To diko sou asteri" (Το δικό σου αστέρι) 9 56
"1990 "Christos Callow & Wave Greek ""Horis Skopo" (Χωρίς σκοπό) 19 11
"1991 "Sophia Vossou Greek ""I anoixi" (Η ανοιξη) 13 36
"1992 "Kleopatra Greek ""Olou tou kosmou i Elpida" (Όλου του κόσμου η Ελπίδα) 5 94
"1993 "Katy Garbi Greek ""Ellada, chora tou fotos" (Ελλάδα, χώρα του φωτός) 9 64 "Kvalifikacija za Millstreet
"1994 "Kostas Bigalis Greek ""To trehandiri" (Το τρεχαντήρι) 14 44 No semi-finals
"1995 "Elina Konstantopoulou Greek ""Poia prosefchi" (Ποια προσευχή) 12 68
"1996 "Mariana Efstratiou Greek ""Emeis forame to himona anoixiatika" (Εμείς φοράμε το χειμώνα ανοιξιάτικα) 14 36 12 45
"1997 "Marianna Zorba Greek ""Horepse" (Χόρεψε) 12 39 No semi-finals
"1998 "Thalassa Greek ""Mia krifi evaisthisia" (Μια κρυφή ευαισθησία) 20 12
Did not participate between "1999 and "2000
"2001 "Antique "English, Greek ""(I Would) Die for You" 3 147
"2002 "Michalis Rakintzis English ""S.A.G.A.P.O." 17 27
"2003 "Mando English ""Never Let You Go" 17 25
"2004 "Sakis Rouvas English ""Shake It" 3 252 3 238
"2005 "Helena Paparizou English ""My Number One" 1 230 Top 12 previous year
"2006 "Anna Vissi English ""Everything" 9 128 Host country
"2007 "Sarbel English ""Yassou Maria" (Γεια σου Μαρία) 7 139 Top 10 previous year
"2008 "Kalomira English ""Secret Combination" 3 218 1 156
"2009 "Sakis Rouvas English ""This Is Our Night" 7 120 4 110
"2010 "Giorgos Alkaios & "Friends Greek1 ""OPA!" (ΩΠΑ!) 8 140 2 133
"2011 "Loukas Giorkas feat. "Stereo Mike Greek, English ""Watch My Dance" 7 120 1 133
"2012 "Eleftheria Eleftheriou English ""Aphrodisiac" 17 64 4 116
"2013 "Koza Mostra feat. "Agathonas Iakovidis Greek, English ""Alcohol Is Free" 6 152 2 121
"2014 "Freaky Fortune feat. "RiskyKidd English ""Rise Up" 20 35 7 74
"2015 "Maria Elena Kyriakou English ""One Last Breath" 19 23 6 81
"2016 "Argo Greek2, English ""Utopian Land" Failed to qualify 16 44
"2017 "Demy English ""This Is Love" 19 77 10 115
"2018 "Yianna Terzi Greek ”"Oniro mou(Όνειρο Μου) Failed to qualify 14 81


1.^ Contains one phrase in English.
2.^ Contains phrases in "Pontic Greek.

NOTE: If a country had won the previous year, they did not have to compete in the semi-finals the following year. In addition from 2004-2007, the top ten countries who were not members of the big four did not have to compete in the semi-finals the following year. If, for example, Germany and France placed inside the top ten, the countries who placed 11th and 12th were advanced to the following year's grand final along with the rest of the top ten countries.


All conductors are Greek except with a flag.

Prior to 1999, the Greek entry was performed without orchestral accompaniment in 1998.[15]

Voting history[edit]

As of "2018, Greece's voting history is as follows:


Year Location Venue Presenters
"2006 "Athens "Olympic Indoor Hall "Maria Menounos and "Sakis Rouvas

Marcel Bezençon Awards[edit]

Artistic Award

Year Song Performer Final result Points Host city
"2005 ""My Number One" "Helena Paparizou 1st 230 "Kiev

Commentators and spokespersons[edit]

Year(s) Commentator Spokesperson Radio commentator Channel
"1971 Mako Georgiadou Greece did not participate No radio broadcast "EIRT
"1974 Irini Gavala
"1975 Greece did not participate "ERT
"1976 Irini Gavala
"1977 Naki Agathou Dimitris Konstantaras
"1978 Niki Venega
"1981 Tatiana Darra
"1982 Greece did not participate No radio broadcast
"1983 Irini Gavala Dimitris Konstantaras
"1984 No broadcast Greece did not participate No radio broadcast
"1985 Mako Georgiadou Kelly Sakakou Dimitris Konstantaras
"1986 Greece did not participate No radio broadcast
"1987 "Dafni Bokota Kelly Sakakou Dimitris Konstantaras
"1988 Fotini Giannoulatou
"1991 Giorgos Mitropoulos
"1996 Niki Venega
"1998 Giorgos Mitropoulos Alexis Kostalas Dimitris Konstantaras
"1999 "Dafni Bokota Greece did not participate No radio broadcast
"2001 Alexis Kostalas Giorgos Mitropoulos
"2004 No radio broadcast
"2005 "Alexandra Pascalidou
"2006 "Giorgos Kapoutzidis and "Zeta Makrypoulia
"2007 "Maria Bakodimou and Fotis Sergoulopoulos
"2008 "Maggira Sisters
"2010 Rika Vagiani
"2011 Maria Kozakou Lena Aroni
"2012 Andrianna Maggania
"2013 Maria Kozakou and "Giorgos Kapoutzidis
"2014 "NERIT
"2015 "Helena Paparizou Maria Kozakou and "Giorgos Kapoutzidis
"2016 "Constantinos Christoforou "ERT
"2018 Alexandros Lizardos and Daphne Skalioni Olina Xenopoulou Alexandros Lizardos and Daphne Skalioni

NOTE: In "2014, Maria Kozakou was the commentator for all shows (Semi-finals & final). "Giorgos Kapoutzidis, was the commentator only for the final, along with Maria Kozakou.

Congratulations: 50 Years of the Eurovision Song Contest[edit]

Table key
  Second place
  Third place
  Last place
Year Artist Language Title Final Points Semi Points Place ("2005) Points ("2005)
"2005 "Helena Paparizou "English ""My Number One" 4 245 4 167 1 230


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Paravantes, Maria. (2005-06-11). Joy In Greece Over Eurovision Win. "Billboard 117(24), 17-17. Retrieved on 2009-01-16.
  2. ^ "EUROVISION SONG CONTEST 1975" (in Greek). OGAE Greece. Retrieved 2008-08-30. 
  3. ^ Raycoff, Ivan; Robert Deayom Tobin (July 2007). A Song for Europe. "Aldershot, "Hampshire, "England: "Ashgate Publishing. "ISBN "978-0-7546-5878-8. 
  4. ^ Konstantopoulos, Fotis (2005-02-03). "Greek, Cypriot and Lebanese news". Oikotimes. Archived from the original on 2005-02-05. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 
  5. ^ TV.com - Eurovision 1982
  6. ^ a b c "Polina Biography" (in Greek). Archived from the original on 2008-09-07. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 
  7. ^ ""Wagon-lit" single - 1986". "Sony Music. Retrieved 2008-08-24. 
  8. ^ ERT Staff (2008-07-16). "Ο Σάκης Ρουβάς και πάλι στη EUROVISION" (in Greek). "ERT. Retrieved 2008-07-16. ["dead link]
  9. ^ Osborn, Michael (2008-05-25). "Eurovision vote 2008: Top 10". "BBC News. Retrieved 2008-05-22. 
  10. ^ http://www.eurovision.tv/page/history/by-year/contest?event=1593#Scoreboard Archived 2013-01-22 at the "Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ Vasileiadis, George. "Greece: Argo release Eurovision song "Utopian Land"". Eurovision 2016 Predictions, Polls, Odds, Rankings | wiwibloggs. Retrieved 2016-03-27. 
  12. ^ Alexander, Ruth (2008-05-19). "The maths of Eurovision voting". "BBC News. Retrieved 2008-05-22. 
  13. ^ Osborn, Michael (2008-05-20). "Sweden tipped to win Eurovision". "BBC News. Retrieved 2008-05-22. 
  14. ^ Floras, Stella (2008-05-17). "Greece-Cyprus party hugely successful". ESCToday. Archived from the original on 2008-05-19. Retrieved 2008-05-22. 
  15. ^ http://andtheconductoris.eu/

Eurovision sites[edit]

External links[edit]

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