Montaigne has cancelled plans to travel to Rotterdam, the Netherlands, to represent Australia at the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest. However she’s not actually pulling out of Eurovision, and will instead compete via video link

The decision from SBS comes because it’s still too much of a logistical nightmare for an entire delegation to travel to/from Australia during the pandemic. It was a similar story last year, when the contest was called off altogether because of COVID-19.

“Naturally, I’m sad that for two years in a row I have been unable to participate in the live spectacle of Eurovision,” Montaigne said in a statement.

“My partner and I had been discussing what video games we would bunker down with in a hotel room in Rotterdam between rehearsals for the final event, and we were excited about it.

“Despite that disappointment, it is still an immense privilege to be able to participate and compete in Eurovision, in its fandom and its processes, two years in a row. I have been able to submit two songs that I’m proud of and that have meant significant things to people.

“I am still absolutely stoked that I can present “Technicolour” this year, in whatever form my final performance may come in! It’s such a beautiful festivity and not even a pandemic can put it to bed. Eurovision will live forever.”

The artist also been answering viewers’ and fans’ questions in a live Q&A over on the Eurovision Insta page, where she explained that the final decision was made by an independent risk assessor hired by SBS.

While some people have pointed out that this means Montaigne won’t be able to mingle with the artists from other countries, this was never a possibility anyway due to social distancing measures being implemented by the contest.

“Technicolour” is the second song Montaigne wrote for the contest, because her entry for last year’s aborted Eurovision Song Contest, “Don’t Break Me”, didn’t qualify this year by default.

Still, both songs are total bangers and Australia is sure to be strong competitor in 2021, albeit from afar.

For lovers of liver performances, Montaigne was thankfully able to debut the song at the 2021 Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras in front of a half-full stadium.

Paul Clarke, creative director of our Eurovision selection contest Australia Decides, also let one vague but very promising tidbit of info drop.

“We’re excited that it’s the first time part of Eurovision will be on Australian soil, and hopefully it won’t be the last!” he said.

After years of hearing the EBU say that any Aussie participation will have to take place within Europe itself, this is very refreshing to hear.

Fingers bloody crossed for what the future might hold.

Image: Supplied