The Israeli public television network, Kan, organizer of the Festival of Eurovision which will be held in Tel Aviv in May, has suspended the sale of tickets for the event after detecting "irregularities" in the awarding of tickets. According to the Israeli chain, the organization suspects that some of the most desired tickets were subject to resale last Thursday, minutes after the tickets could be purchased officially on the web www.lean.co.il, the only one authorized for it.
The first round of tickets for the final eurovisiva, which will be held on May 28, sold out in an hour and that the cheapest ticket cost 340 euros. Tens of thousands of people who were waiting for their turn to buy at the time platform on-line They stayed with the honey on their lips. As soon as the sale began, the system already registered a waiting list of about 70,000 interested parties.
Attending live to the final is an impossible mission as well because for the different shows - a total of nine between rehearsals and live galas - there will only be 4,300 tickets available. Prices, depending on the event you want to attend, range from 150 euros for the cheapest entry, for the rehearsals of the semifinals, to 500 for the most expensive for the final of May 18.
Before the suspension of the sale on Sunday night, there were still tickets available for the rehearsals and the two semifinals. Then it was when the organization denounced that at least 300 of the best tickets sold out for the Grand Final had ended up in the hands of personalities from the world of national entertainment and sport. If the investigations that have now been taken by the Israeli police are confirmed, these tickets could be invalidated and put back on sale, because their recipient should have been the general public.
"Abusing the public with resale is a bad practice and illegal. We will not allow a historical and festive event, held around the world, to become a tool in the hands of criminals who give Israel a bad image, "said Gilad Erdan, Israel's Minister of Public Security.
Several Hebrew media claim that the alarm jumped when eleven times more expensive tickets were detected, through the well-known website Viagogo. That's when the official prices are already double those of the last edition in Portugal. The organization of the event in Israel had planned to take out in April a second round in April of the coveted tickets for the grand final. Now that turn will depend on the conclusions of the police investigation.
One of the criticized aspects of this edition of the contest, and for which probably many eurofans will stay at home, has been the limited capacity of the place chosen to hold the event. The shows will take place on the main stage of the International Convention Center of Tel Aviv, and the organization has also enabled a second VIP space with tickets at the single price of 500 euros: the so-called Green Room, located in a neighboring pavilion. There you can follow the event through giant screens, along with artists from the 42 countries that this year aspire to win the event. This offer includes drinks, snacks and a souvenir gift but it did not seem to captivate the general public: before the sale of tickets was suspended, there were still not a few available.
Faced with criticism for the limited capacity, Kan explained that the 10,000 seats of the Convention Center were reduced to around 7,300 due to the size of the scenario and security issues. Of these, 3,000 were reserved for the delegations of participating countries, sponsors and Eurovision organizers and half of the remaining 2,000, went on sale on Thursday.
According to the rules of the European Broadcasting Union (UER), only the so-called "big five" (Spain, Italy, France, United Kingdom and Germany) and Israel, as host country, have a guaranteed place in the grand final . The rest will have to win it in the semifinals that will take place on May 14 and 16 in Tel Aviv.
The Israeli city has turned around with the organization of the event for which it has already recruited 1,500 volunteers in charge of assisting tourists and visitors attracted by Eurovision as well as the guests who will step on the red carpet during the welcoming ceremony that will take place in The Tel Aviv Museum of Art.