The competition is known for its excess, but Belarusian entry Ivan proved to be too excessive even for the pop pageant when he performed at rehearsals naked while flanked by a wolf named Shakira.
The singer was promptly informed that the competition’s rules prohibit the use of animals on stage, as well as demanding that contestants be clothed, and in fairly liberal Sweden, the latter regulation in particular came off as more than a touch prudish.
In response, Swedish Eurovision host Måns Zelmerlöw is set to poke fun at the affair during Thursday night’s second semi-final.
According to pictures emerging of the rehearsals at the Globe Arena (Globen) in Stockholm, the 2015 competition winner spent part of the show wearing nothing but a cuddly wolf toy, with comedian co-host Petra Mede noting ironically that neither naked people nor animals were permitted on stage.
The 'Heroes' singer seemingly confirmed the stunt by uploading a picture to Instagram of him wearing a bathrobe and carrying the fake wolf in question. Much to the delight of some of Zelmerlöw's more excitable fans.
As for original wolf-man Ivan, the lanky Belarusian will be looking to book his place in Saturday's final this Thursday night. Can Zelmerlöw inspire him through the semi? Tune in to find out.