The Italian rock band Maneskin, which won the Eurovision Song Contest, returned home Sunday (May. 23, 2021) to the adulation of fans and so much speculation that the lead singer had snorted cocaine during the show that he offered to take a drug test.
Maneskin lead singer Damiano David strongly denied he had taken drugs during Saturday’s live television broadcast. But he offered to take a drug test upon his return to Rome to put the matter to rest and refute social media speculation fueled by footage of him bending over a table during the competition.
Asked at a post-victory news conference whether he’d snorted cocaine, David replied that he doesn’t use drugs and indicated that he’d bent over because another band member had broken a glass at their feet. Eurovision confirmed that broken glass was found under the table in question.
In Italy, the drug claim didn’t mar the praise that poured in Sunday from the Italian establishment for the victory of the rather anti-establishment group Maneskin, a glam rock band that got its start busking on Rome’s main shopping drag.
Their win gave Italy a sorely needed boost after a dreadful year as one of the countries worst hit by the coronavirus.
The band was the bookmakers’ favorite going into the Eurovision finale and sealed the win early Sunday with the highest popular vote in the enormously entertaining, and incredibly kitsch, annual song festival.
“We are out of our minds!” Florence’s Uffizi Galleries tweeted, echoing Maneskin’s winning song lyrics, along with an image of a Caravaggio Medusa and the hashtag #Uffizirock.
Maneskin, Danish for “moonlight” and a tribute to bass player Victoria De Angelis‘ Danish ancestry, won with a total of 529 points. France was second while Switzerland, which led after national juries had voted, finished third.
“Rock’n’roll never dies, tonight we made history. We love u,” the band tweeted before heading back home from Rotterdam, Netherlands, where this year’s contest was held.