Mika is a familiar face to British audiences – but how did the singer end up hosting the Eurovision 2022 event in Italy?
Eurovision fans will be happy to see the competition again, but viewers will notice a familiar face on stage.
Broadcasting from Turin, Italy, this year’s event will be hosted by singer-songwriter Mika along with Italian presenter Alessandro Cattelan and Italian singer Laura Pausini.
But how did the British singer end up hosting Eurovision in Italy?
Here’s everything you need to know about Mika.
Who is Micah?
Mika is a Lebanon-born British singer-songwriter who rose to fame after releasing his debut album Life in Cartoon Motion in 2007.
The 38-year-old is known in the UK and around the world for his smash hit Grace Kelly.
The song peaked at number one in the UK, where it stayed for five weeks in early 2007.
Mika was also successful with the subsequent releases Big Girl (You Are Beautiful) and Love Today.
In the years that followed, he collaborated with singer Ariana Grande on “Popular Song” and subsequently appeared on television.
He was announced as a judge on The X Factor Italy in 2013, becoming the first foreign mentor on the show.
Previously he was a judge on the French version of The Voice.
Why is Mika hosting Eurovision?
Although not born in Italy, Mika has been living in the countryside since 2013.
His connection to the country is deep and his popularity in the country is great.
Speaking to The One Show about his Eurovision hosting gig, Mika said: “I learned Italian just because I had the opportunity to do The X Factor in Italy.
“I learned it in a few months, luckily my Italian is better now, the ironic thing about this whole thing is that I’m doing Eurovision, the biggest TV show Italy has ever had to host, and the whole thing is in English. “
Who else is hosting Eurovision with Mika?
Mika will host the Italian edition of the competition together with Italian presenter Alessandro Cattelan and Italian singer Laura Pausini.
Alessandro is a famous TV Presenter, known in Italy for hosting The X Factor.
Laura Pausini is a renowned singer who was the first Italian artist to win a Grammy Award.
Why did Sophie Ellis-Bextor turn down the Eurovision role?
Mika might not have been the only recognizable face for British audiences.
Sophie Ellis-Bextor was originally supposed to have a seat on the British jury.
The jury, composed of six music experts from each country, votes on the audience’s performances separately, with the jury’s and audience’s votes being weighted equally in the final results.
But a bizarre rule prevented them from participating this year.
Speaking to Radio Times, Sophie revealed her newborn had discovered her when she went to Turin as a judge.
The ‘Murder on the Dancefloor’ hitmaker said: “I had a very small baby that I was still feeding and they wouldn’t let me bring it.
“I’m pretty sure the baby would have been impartial, but you know what, I think part of what I like about Eurovision is that it has its own rules… it’s crazy.”
Sophie also joked that the rule requiring juries to be silent during performances would have been difficult for her, saying, “I was like, ‘I can’t watch Eurovision in silence’.”