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Sprinkle the sequins, spark up the disco lights and get ready for battle – it's time for the Eurovision Song Contest, a celebration of kitsch and cheesy pop with an undercurrent of politics and patriotism.This week musical acts from more than 40 countries are taking the stage in Kiev to vie for the Eurovision crown, watched by some 200 million television viewers.Russia is one of Eurovision's heavy hitters, tied with Sweden for the most top-five finishes this century.Russia has been angry since last year, when Ukrainian singer Jamala won the contest with "1944 ".As the 2016 winner, Ukraine is this year's Eurovision host.John Kennedy O'Connor, author of Eurovision's official history, said Ukraine has long used Eurovision as a way to annoy Russia.It launched a year before the foundation of the European Economic Community, forerunner of the European Union.O'Connor says the Italian song has the qualities of a Eurovision classic.
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