Patricia Bredin, Britain’s first ever contestant at the Eurovision Song Contest, has died aged 88

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The singer, who competed in the 1957 Eurovision Song Contest, was discovered at London's Savoy

Eurovision historians are mourning the death of Patricia Bredin, the first British Eurovision Song Contest entrant, who died at the age of 88. Bredin, a native of Hull, was catapulted into the spotlight at just 22 years old when she graced the Eurovision Song Contest stage in 1957. Discovered at London's Savoy, the singer also made a name for herself as an actress, appearing alongside renowned figures like Ian Carmichael and Sid James in various films.

Bredin's Eurovision journey began with a fateful encounter with BBC executives who asked her, "Would you like to be on TV?". This marked a significant milestone as only 10 countries participated in the contest at the time. 

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Despite being relatively unknown, Bredin secured seventh place in the UK with her love song "All." Unfortunately, the song, which clocked in at less than two minutes, was never recorded for public consumption despite being broadcast on TV. At 1:52, "All" was for a long time the shortest performance in the history of the contest until it was broken in 2015 when Finland's Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät performed "Aina mun pitää", which was only 1:27 long.

In her 2016 BBC interview, Bredin fondly recollected her Eurovision experience, stating, "Singing in the final in Frankfurt, Germany, it was wonderful, because they had about a 60-piece orchestra and it was like being on clouds." 

Though she faced initial challenges, she persevered to enjoy a flourishing career on both stage and screen, even assuming lead roles in productions like "Left Right and Centre" alongside luminaries such as Alastair Sim.

Bredin's journey was marked by personal milestones too, having been married to Welsh singer and actor Ivor Emmanuel, and later to Canadian millionaire Charles MacCulloch, with whom she settled on a farm in Nova Scotia. Despite the twists and turns, Patricia Bredin's legacy as the UK's first Eurovision representative will forever be etched in history.

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