Bonnie Tyler to Represent U.K. at Eurovision Song Contest
LONDON - Rock legend Bonnie Tyler will represent the U.K. in this year's Eurovision Song Contest, Europe's biggest music event.
She will perform the song "Believe in Me" at the event in Malmo, Sweden, in May, which marks the 30th anniversary of her hit "Total Eclipse of the Heart."
"The U.K. has long been holding out for a Eurovision hero, and now the wait could be over," the BBC said in announcing Tyler as the U.K. candidate for the 58th annual Eurovision contest. With a global TV audience of more than 120 million and up to 160 million viewers, the music competition isalso is known as the world's most popular nonsporting TV event.
Eurovision alumni include the likes of ABBA, which won for Sweden in 1974, and Celine Dion, who won for Switzerland in 1988.
Last year, another British music veteran, Engelbert Humperdinck, failed to excite the audience at the Eurovision competition in Baku, Azerbaijan, coming in 25th out of 26 finalists.
This year, for the third year in a row, the BBC picked Britain's Eurovision representative internally instead of organizing a televised selection process.
“I am truly honored and delighted to be able to represent my country at Eurovision, and especially with such a fabulous song," Tyler, who was born in Wales, said. "I promise to give this everything that I've got for the U.K.!”
"Believe in Me" was written by Desmond Child, Lauren Christy and Christopher Braide and produced by David Huff. It was recorded in Nashville and mixed in Santa Monica.
"Bonnie Tyler is truly a global superstar with a fantastic voice, and we are delighted she will be flying the flag for the U.K. in Malmo," said Katie Taylor, BBC controller of entertainment and events.
The Eurovision Song Contest competition will take place May 18, following semifinals earlier that week. The competition sees each country award points to its favorite performers based either on audience or jury votes.
In Britain, the final will be broadcast live on BBC One with commentary by talk show star Graham Norton.
The U.K. has won the competition five times, most recently in 1997 with Katrina and the Waves' "Love Shine a Light." The first British victory came in 1967, when Sandie Shaw won people over with her hit "Puppet on a String."