Netherlands In The Eurovision Song Contest
The Netherlands was one of the seven countries competing in the very first Eurovision Song Contest in 1956. It has missed only four contests so far. The preselection process is done through the Nationaal Songfestival with the winner qualifying to represent the Netherlands in the Eurovision Song Contest.
With four victories the Netherlands ranks in the top 10 most successful Eurovision countries. Nevertheless the last victory to date was in 1975 and Dutch songs have had mixed success since, with roughly half of the songs placing in the Top-10 and the other half doing (much) worse. Notable high placings in the 1980s and 1990s were achieved by Bernadette, Marcha, Gerard Joling, Humphrey Campbell, Ruth Jacott and Edsilia Rombley, who all finished in the top ten. Edislia Rombley's 1998 entry (Hemel en Aarde) remains the Netherlands' most successful post-1975 song, finished fourth in Birmingham.
Since the Semi Final and Grand Final system was introduced in 2004, the Netherlands has reached the final only once (with Re-Union in 2004). The country has had eight consecutive non-qualifiers (up to and including 2012) which is a Eurovision record. The Netherlands is currently ranked 11th in the list of countries with most points awarded through the years.
The Netherlands has hosted the Eurovision Song Contest four times: in 1958, 1970, 1976 and 1980. The first three times were after winning the previous year, while the 1980 contest was staged in the Netherlands after Israel (who had won in 1979) declined to organise the event for a second consecutive time. For the same reason the Netherlands declined the right to organise the 1960 contest.
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