IT'S full of glamour and full of glitz and there is nothing quite like the Eurovision Song Contest for a reason to have a party.

This year is the 60th show and it is being staged in the Austrian city of Vienna, courtesy of last year's 'bearded lady' winner Conchita Wurst.

Knutsford Guardian: Austria's Conchita Wurst, who performed the song Rise Like a Phoenix, listens as points are announced at the final of the Eurovision Song Contest in Denmark (AP)

Over the next week, we intend to bring you a selection of exclusive interviews from the banks of the Danube, to help put you in touch with some of the runners and riders at this year's contest

For those that know about these things, 40 countries are taking part in the effort to come out on top.

By virtue of the fact that the BBC gives money to fund the competition, it and five other countries, including last year's winner Austria, go direct to the final. This year will also see the inclusion in the final of Australia which was invited along as a special guest in thr 60th year.

The remaining 33 countries will participate in two semi-finals on Tuesday and Thursday (Live BBC3) to claim the final 20 golden tickets to Saturday's final.

So stay with us and keep checking out our live updates and next Saturday's live blog from Vienna.