50º Eurovision Song Contest
My Number One (Helena Paparizou) - Greece
The 50th Eurovision Song Contest was held at the Palace of Sports, Kiev (Kyiv), Ukraine. The winner was Greece's My Number One, performed by Greek popular singer Helena Paparizou, who scored a record 230 points, while Malta's Angel performed by Chiara was the runner up with 192 points. The contest took place on 19 May 2005 for the semi-final and 21 May 2005 for the final.
Organizers hoped that this event would boost Ukraine's image abroad and increase tourism, while the country's new government hoped that it would also give a modest boost to the long-term goal of acquiring European Union membership. The official logo of the contest remained the same from the 2004 contest with the country's flag in the heart being changed. Following Istanbul's 'Under The Same Sky' the slogan for the 2005 show was 'Awakening', which symbolised the awakening of the country and city ready to present itself to Europe. The postcards (short clips shown between performances) for the 2005 show illustrated Ukraine’s culture and heritage along with a more modern and industrial side to the country.
The hosts of the Eurovision Song Contest in Kiev were television presenter Maria "Masha" Efrosinina and DJ Pavlo "Pasha" Shylko. Previous winner Ruslana returned to the stage in Kiev to perform in the interval act and interview the contestants backstage in the 'green room'. The famous Ukrainian boxers Vitali & Wladimir Klitschko opened the tele-voting, while a special trophy was presented to the winner by Ukraine's president, Viktor Yushchenko.
An official CD and DVD was released and a new introduction was an official pin set, which contains heart-shaped pins with the flags of all 39 participating countries. This year's newcomers to the Contest were Bulgaria and Moldova, while Hungary returned after a hiatus since their last entry in the 1998 contest. Lebanon was also expected to make a début show appearance but was forced to withdraw after announcing they would show commercials over the Israeli entry. It is notable that Ireland, the only seven-time Eurovision winner, failed to qualify for the final.
In the final itself, the hosts, Ukraine along with the so-called 'Big 4' (Spain, United Kingdom, France, and Germany - the biggest contributors to the European Broadcasting Union, who automatically qualify) occupied the bottom five places of the scoreboard.