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Live Nation Israel has confirmed that Madonna will perform at the annual Eurovision song competition, which is set to take place this year in Tel Aviv on May 18.
The singer is expected to “perform two songs, including a new song from her upcoming album,” according to Live Nation Israel representatives Guy Beser and Shay Mor Yosef.
Following reports of ongoing negotiations to secure the performance, the announcement went on to detail that “Madonna’s show was made possible by the backing of Mr. Sylvan Adams, who saw the importance of bringing the iconic singer to Tel Aviv and creating a memorable historic performance.” Adams is a Jewish-Canadian philanthropist who has financed large-scale events and concerts over the last few years as a way to support Israel and battle boycott movements.
As previously announced, model Bar Refaeli and veteran Israeli TV personality Erez Tal will host the event, which will be held next month in the holy land.
Following singer Netta’s win in Lisbon last May, this will be Israel’s third time hosting the European song competition, now in its 64th year, an honor that did not come without difficulties. Organizers have weathered storms ranging from controversies surrounding local government involvement and international calls to boycotts. In January, the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement called on European Broadcasting Union member countries to boycott Eurovision along with LGBTQIA communities, claiming it’s a ploy to “distract attention from its war crimes against Palestinians.”
Just last week, the EBU’s executive supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, Jon Ola Sand, sent an urgent letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu demanding the immediate completion of police inspection of equipment at the venue, halted due to budgetary squabbling within government branches.
Last year’s Eurovision was watched by a cumulative audience of 186 million viewers worldwide, in what is referred to as the world’s biggest live music event.
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