The BBC has revealed some of the facts and figures behind its staging of the Eurovision 2023 Song Contest from Liverpool this week, with 60 miles of power cabling alone being required.
The staging for the live shows at Liverpool Arena comprises 600 rigging points, 140 tons of steel ground support structure, and one kilometre of additional steel truss work being added to the arena.
The event will feature eight miles of cabling for lighting, sound, video and SFX, over 2,000 specialist lighting fixtures, 200 custom staging decks, 950 square metres of staging for the main stage, and 500 square metres of staging for the green room. 2000 metres of secure fencing will be used to keep the event safe and secure.
The lighting at the contest will feature 165,000 channels of lighting control across three operators, 23,700 individual light sources, and 2500 automated colour-changing robotic lights. The lighting team will use nine consoles to run 28,000 lighting cues, while 15 follow spots will be operated by 10 professionals and five theatre technology students from LIPA & Cheshire College.
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For sound, there’s 150 microphones and over 1,200 individual streams of audio. With so many different acts and performers taking part, the sound team will ensure that every note is heard loud and clear.
Power is another crucial component of the contest, with one megawatt of UPS power, 60 miles of cabling around the arena, 150 distribution boards, and 5,000 man-hours dedicated to power works.
The broadcast of the contest will be watched by over 160 million viewers worldwide, with over eight hours of live TV and 50 live feeds. 29 commentators will broadcast live from the arena and with less than 50 seconds to strike and set between performances, the broadcast team will have their work cut out to ensure the show runs smoothly.
The hair and makeup teams are also hard at work to make sure that every performer looks their best. The team has used over 100 wigs and hairpieces, 1000 litres of hairspray, over 3,000 makeup brushes, and 5,000 hairpins to create looks for each performer.
The costume departments have 150 metres of costume rails full of costumes - equivalent to three Olympic sized swimming pools in length. The departments have manufactured 482 costumes over the three shows using 20,000 metres of thread, and 47 of them took 250 metres of fabric to manufacture. All the manufacturing was done in the UK and Ukraine, showcasing the international nature of the event.
BBC Director of Unscripted Kate Phillips said: “As these statistics show this is one of the biggest events the BBC has ever produced. Coming straight after such a significant and spectacular moment in history, we aim to produce an unforgettable and utterly joyful Eurovision, on behalf of Ukraine. Like the Coronation, Eurovision has so many skilled and talented people from across the BBC working on it. Our brilliant team in Liverpool are making sure that all three live shows are simply must-see TV, for audiences across the UK, Europe and beyond.”
The Eurovision Song Contest 2023 begins with the first semi-final on Tuesday 9 May and the second on Thursday 11 May. The grand final is on Saturday 13 May.
Read more Behind the Scenes: Eurovision 2023