The Eurovision Song Contest 2021 kicks off on May 18 with the Maneskin representing Italy. The group, fresh from the triumph in Sanremo 2021, is hunting for victory in the most popular singing event in Europe, now in its 65th edition. The competition, which annually awards the best song in Europe, after the 2020 stop due to the Covid-19 pandemic will be held at the Ahoy Arena in Rotterdam, the Netherlands and will see the presence of the public, with a maximum of 3500 people per evening. The first semifinal will take place tomorrow evening, May 18th, the second Thursday May 20th, while the final is scheduled for Saturday 22nd. WHERE TO SEE IT The two evenings of May 18th and 20th will be visible on Rai4 from about 8.45pm. To comment live there will be Ema Stokholma and Saverio Raimondo. The final will be broadcast live by Rai1, Saturday 22 May from 8.40 pm, with the commentary by Gabriele Corsi and Cristiano Malgioglio. PARTICIPANTS 39 songs representing as many nations participate in this year’s edition. The two semifinals qualify 20 tracks for the final. Italy, along with the Netherlands, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and Spain are entitled to the final and will be represented by the Maneskin, who participate with the song ‘Zitti e buona’ brought to triumph on the stage of the Ariston. Fresh from the Sanremo success and the gold record for their latest album ‘Teatro d’Ira Vol. I’, they will try to bring back to Italy a trophy that has been missing since 1990. In the first semifinal the Maneskin will show the public a recorded clip of their performance, carried out during rehearsals on the stage of the Ahoy Arena. Opening the evening will be the winner of 2019, the Dutch Duncan Laurence. 16 countries competing, but only 10 will enter the Final. In the second semifinal, 17 countries will compete, 10 of which will reach the final. New this year is the Eurovision Italian Party, an online initiative by Rai4 and RaiPlay. A series of presentation clips to get to know the participants of this edition of the Eurovision Song Contest. Ema Stokholma and Saverio Raimondo introduce us to the singers in the competition who tell us about their connection with Italy through a memory. Many of them interpret a song of the Italian tradition. You can hear, among others, ‘Parole parole parole’ interpreted by the French Barbara Pravi, ‘Azzurro’ in a special acoustic version of the Azerbaijani Efendi and ‘I have no age’ by the Israeli Eden Alene. it will be possible to comment on the evenings on the official pages of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram of Rai4.