Ukrainian band Antytila call for Birmingham to host Eurovision Song Contest 2023

Ukrainian band Antytila who went viral after offering to perform alongside Ed Sheeran at a concert are backing Birmingham to host Eurovision, the BBC reports.

Antytila are one of the country's most popular acts and attracted a whole new fanbase when they posted a TikTok video while clad in combat gear in Kyiv.

In it they asked to perform remotely at the Concert For Ukraine, hosted at the NEC outside Birmingham in March.

Now they are calling for the city to also play host to Eurovision.

Ukraine swept to success in the competition earlier this year with Kalush Orchestra, but due to the war, Eurovision organisers asked the UK, which came second, to host next year's event. On Friday, Birmingham was named on a seven-city shortlist for the song contest, alongside Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield.

"In Ukraine everyone knows Birmingham is a good city in the UK," Antytila lead singer Taras Topolia said.

"After we applied to Ed Sheeran, lots of people started to talk about Birmingham in Ukraine because [the video] became really viral."

Birmingham City Council leader Ian Ward said there was "lots of cheering and shouting" in Victoria Square when the city was announced on the Eurovision shortlist earlier on Friday.

"A little bit later on we will sit down and have a look at what we have to do to get through the next stage," he added.

Mr Ward continued: "We are very much a city of immigration, a city that has welcomed the world, and we do that in style."

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