Eurovision fans get excited – the official semi-final allocation will occur in exactly one week’s time from the Palazzo Madama e Casaforte degli Acaja in Turin, Italy. The draw is set to be hosted by TV presenters Carolina di Domenico and Gabriele Corsi, and the mayor of Rotterdam Ahmed Aboutaleb will also be present for the Host City insignia pass to Turin mayor Stefano Lo Russo. The Host City Insignia pass started in 2007 when Helsinki added the first keyring, and has been presented at every allocation draw since. You can learn about each of the keyrings and which contest they represent thanks to u/vintage on Reddit.
If you have never watched the allocation draw before, this will be the moment when the 36 competing countries are assigned to the first or second semi-final using a 6 pot system. The pots are designed using historical voting patterns using Eurovision televoting partner Digame, and helps to eliminate “neighbourly voting” in the semi-finals. This is why you will notice that many of the Balkan countries are all together in Pot 1, the Nordic countries together in Pot 2, and the Baltic countries being together in Pot 5. The central European countries appear to make up most of Pot 6 as well.
The presenters will first draw which Big 5 country will vote in which semi-final – keep in mind that since Italy is both a host country and a Big 5 country, the draw will likely be 2 for one semi and 3 for the other. Then the presenters will move through the six pots from pot 1 to pot 6 and draw a country at random for the first semi-final, and then then the second presenter will draw a slip from the running order to determine where they will perform in that semi-final. Once all the slots are filled for the first semi-final they then continue through the remaining pots to fill the second semi-final and draw their running orders as well.
The pots have changed slightly from 2020 to 2022, as Austria and Switzerland moved from Pot 1 to Pot 6, Estonia moved from Pot 2 to Pot 5, Moldova has moved from Pot 3 to Pot 5, Romania has moved from Pot 4 to Pot 5 to be with Moldova, Israel moved from Pot 5 to Pot 3, and Ireland and Czech Republic have moved from Pot 5 to Pot 6. Many of these changes are due to the fact that only 5 pots were used for the 2020 contest, with 6 or 7 countries per Pot. This year there are 6 countries across all 6 Pots.
Once this draw is complete, the show producers will then create a final running order using the first half/second half draws and announce it prior to rehearsal week. During this time it is common that we get an idea for what the graphics and color scheme for the contest could look like, but since Italy has not revealed the logo for the 2022 contest it is unkown what the graphics might look like for the broadcast.