A BBC reporter has suffered a slight blunder after appearing to confuse a Eurovision fan with Finland’s competition entrant Kaarija.
The first Eurovision semi-final took place at Liverpool Arena on Tuesday, with Kaarija (Jere Pöyhönen) one of the 10 acts who were successful in making it through to the grand final on Saturday.
With 37 acts to keep track of, a superfan taking style inspiration from the rapper managed to hoodwink the unsuspecting journalist,
Following a show preview, BBC North West Tonight aired a selection of interviews with fans, several of whom backed Finland to go the distance in the competition.
Speaking to an unidentified man in a similar luminous green top worn by the Cha Cha Cha singer onstage, the reporter remarked ‘we even managed to catch up with the main man himself’.
The strapline underneath the interview also read ‘Kaarija – Finland entrant’.
Asked about how Liverpool was as a host city, the man replied: ‘Incredible.’
‘In comparison with all the other countries that I have been (to), this is better organised,’ he added.
‘Everything is walking distance, and it’s just so friendly. Everything is just so easy around here. It’s incredible.’
Many eagle-eyed Eurovision fans noticed the mistake and made sure to point it out on social media.
As journalist Scott Bryan posted on Twitter: ‘OH MY GOD BBC North West Tonight interviewed a Käärijä fan thinking it was HIM.’
‘BBC North West, hate to break it to you but this is not Käärijä,’ someone else wrote.
Another added: ‘Noooooooo BBC North West thought they were speaking to Käärijä but it was a fan cosplaying.’
During Tuesday’s semi-final, the real Kaarija gave a high energy performance of his track, a combination of techno and anthemic pop, prompting a raucous response from the audience.
His outfit and dance moves have drawn plenty of attention, but he has also now revealed the hidden meaning of one.
His green bolero sleeves have been nicknamed Kaalimato, which is Finnish for ‘cabbage worm’.
In an interview with BBC he said it was a sex metaphor.
‘We have [an adult] store called Kaalimato in Finland. They have some crazy things there,’ he explained.
Aside from Finland, the other countries who made it through from the first semi-final were Croatia, Moldova, Switzerland, Czechia, Israel, Portugal, Sweden, Serbia and Norway.
The BBC has been contacted for comment.
The second Eurovision semi-final airs on Thursday at 8pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.
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