“Ted Lasso” star Hannah Waddingham is set to host the Eurovision Song Contest final in May, it has been revealed.
Waddingham, who plays soccer club owner Rebecca Welton in the Apple TV drama, will host Eurovision alongside Graham Norton, “Britain’s Got Talent” judge Alesha Dixon and Ukrainian singer Julia Sanina.
Norton is the BBC’s longtime commentator of Eurovision and on the night of the Grande Finale in Liverpool will be alternating hosting duties with commentating. Mel Giedroyc will fill in in the commentary box when Norton is on stage.
Dixon started her career as a pop star in R&B group Mis-teeq before pivoting to television presenting following a stint on “Strictly Come Dancing.” Sanina is a singer and composer as well as frontwoman of rock band The HARDKISS.
“There’s something really special about Eurovision which is why I’ve been an avid fan for years – from the camaraderie of all the acts backstage, to the epic scale of the show,” said Waddingham. “It’s one of the world’s greatest music festivals, but this year, perhaps more than ever, it is such a great honour to be standing shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine, a country which has carried itself with such strength and unity. It is my great privilege to join Eurovision this year of all years.”
Kate Phillips, BBC’s director of unscripted said: “The BBC is thrilled to have such a talented line-up bringing the Eurovision Song Contest from Liverpool – on behalf of Ukraine – to the world. One thing that truly unites us all is music, and we’re proud to have a team – who are well accustomed to the worlds of music, performing and live broadcasting – as part of our Eurovision presenting family. It will be a remarkable moment for the BBC to deliver two huge pinnacles in this year’s broadcasting calendar, the King’s Coronation and Eurovision, within the same week.”
Andrew Cartmell, executive producer and head of delegation at BBC Studios, said: “BBC Studios are thrilled to have pulled together such a talented line-up of hosts and commentators for Eurovision 2023. Between them they have huge experience in broadcasting and performing, and collectively there is a genuine passion for all things Eurovision. I can’t wait to see our U.K. and Ukrainian Eurovision family come together in the Liverpool Arena in May.”
(Pictured: Hannah Waddingham)