“Around The Continent” is a new series of posts where I will review all the main news of the week. This is the first post of the series that will symbolize the beginning of the Eurovision 2020 season. Therefore it will be longer than usual.
Albania will choose their song and artist via the “Festivali i Këngës” (Eng: “Festival of Songs”). This year it will be the 58th edition of the festival, which means that it was started back in 1962. Albania debut the Eurovision in 2004 and since uses “Festivali i Këngës” as the national final mechanism. The 2020 edition of the festival will be aired at the end of December 2019.
On last Thursday, the Albanian broadcaster RTSH has finally approved the list of 20 acts participating:
- Albërie Hadërgjonaj
- Aldo Bardhi
- Arilena Ara
- Bojken Lako
- Devis Xherahu
- Eli Fara & Stresi
- Elvana Gjata
- Era Rusi
- Genc Tukiçi
- Kanita Suma
- Kamela Islamaj
- Kastro Zizo
- Olta Boka
- Renis Gjoka
- Robert Berisha
- Sara Bajraktari
- Tiri Gjoci
- Valon Shehu
- Wendi Mancaku
Some of the names are well known by the contest fans: Bojken Lako, Tiri Gjoci, and Genc Tukiqi have participated in the festival in the past. Olta Boka won the festival back in 2008 and was the Albanian representative for Eurovision 2008:
Elvana Gjata is one of the biggest divas in Albania. Her new song has received more than 13 millions views only in 2 months:
Arilena Ara was the winner of the 2nd season of “X Factor Albania“:
Australia will choose their song and artist via “Australia Decides”. The national final will be held on February 8th, 2020 alongside a jury show the night before.
Belgium was the first country to reveal its artist for Eurovision2020. Belgium will be represented by Hooverphonic band. The band’s song will be revealed later on around February 2020. Hooverphonic mentioned that their song will be in English and contain string instruments that are well-known Hooverphonic sound.
For the first time in 12 years, The Czech Republic will decide its entry for the contest through a national selection show. The Czech Republic song selection will take place on January the 25th. The voting for the 8 songs competing will be active online for two weeks period. The songs chosen for the contest were chosen among 152 songs submitted to the Czech broadcaster.
Denmark will choose its artist and song via “Dansk Melodi Grand Prix 2020″. The national final will be held on the 7th of March 2020. However, the format of the 2020 edition will include some changes. The national final will include 10 songs, similar to previous years, but only 7 of them will be chosen by the Danish broadcaster DR. The other 3 songs will be decided by the Danish public among 9 songs that will be presented for the public ahead of the show. the top3 will complete the Dansk Melodi Grand Prix 2020 lineup.
Estonia will select its act for Rotterdam via the traditional national selection “Esti Laul“. The national final will have 3 shows: Semi-final 1 will be held on the 13th of February 2020. Semi-Final 2 on the 15th of February 2020. The grand final of “Esti Laul” will be held on Saturday the 29th of February 2020. One can observe that the Estonian Broadcaster may prefer songs in the Estonian language: The participation fee is 3 times larger for those who will send a song in a language different than Estonian (for example English). Moreover, at least half of the writers, singers, and composers must have an Estonian nationality. Esti Laul Songs will be revealed on December 1st, 2019.
The format has some new rules:
1. The staging of each act has to be identical to the intended song staging in the Eurovision.
2. There is a possibility that semis qualifiers will be determined not only by jury and the televote, but also by some “Internet Measures” (number of views on Youtube for example).
Finland will choose their artist and song via the UMK national final. However, in this year’s edition, multiple artists will take part, unlike the 2018-2019 editions that selected the song for an artist selected internally.
Georgia will choose their representative via the “Georgia Idol“. However, unlike 2019, the song for Eurovision 2020 will be chosen internally.
Germany will choose their artist and song via their familiar national final: Unser Lied. The whole process will be similar to last year’s season. Once Again, a panel consist of 100 German Eurovision fans and 20 international music experts (juries) will decide what songs and singers will compete in the national final. In the first round, the panel will listen to all the songs without knowing who are the writers, composers, and singers of the songs. then they will choose some of them for the next round. The second round will examine the combination of different songs with different singers. In other words, every song that will be chosen in the first round will be performed by different singers. After that, 10-20 singers will continue to songwriting camp where they will work together with songwriters and composers for their entries.
Greece will choose their artist and song internally. There are a few potential artists rumored for the job, such as:
Leea Nanos remembered for her participation in last year’s Australian national final. Leea lives in Australia but has Greek origins.
the second rumored name is Vangelis Kakouriotis
And the last one, for now, is 2018 X- Factor UK runner Athina Manoukian.
Iceland will select its act for Rotterdam, both song and artist, via the traditional national selection “Söngvakeppnin”. The Icelandic Broadcaster RÚV has received 157 songs to the contest – 20% more songs than last year. Iceland has qualified to the Grand Final of Eurovision 2019 after 4 years they didn’t succeed to qualify. this fact may explain the reason for the number increase of songs submitted for the job. A panel of 7 Icelandic music experts will choose only 10 songs to compete in the national final. RÚV has invited some popular Icelandic composers and songwriters to write some of the songs as well. The format of the national final will be identical to last year Söngvakeppnin 2019. The 10 chosen songs will be split into two semi-finals. 5 artists will compete in each semi-final, and the top2 will qualify for the final. The broadcaster may use a “wildcard” to join the four selected qualifiers. In other words, 4-5 songs will complete the final lineup. a combined decision of televote and a jury panel will select the semi-finals qualifiers and the grand final winner. the dates for the show are:
- 1st semi-final – February 8th, 2020
- 1st semi-final – February 15th, 2020
- Söngvakeppnin 2020final – February 29th, 2020
Ireland will choose internally the song and artist to Eurovision 2020. the singer Aly Ryan that remembered from last year’s German “Unser Lied für Israel” has offered herself for the Irish broadcast RTE. Aly also submitted her songs to Switzerland, Sam Marino, Austria, and Estonia.
Ppl can hate but RTV Ireland 🇮🇪 the responsible network just followed me 🤷🏼♀️ pic.twitter.com/5eTJgGBnKf
— Aly Ryan ✨ (@alyryanmusic) October 17, 2019
Just received an email from the Austrian broadcaster. Too late this year for Austria 🇦🇹
Maybe next year? pic.twitter.com/FipXyPfkko
— Aly Ryan ✨ (@alyryanmusic) October 23, 2019
Israel will choose their representative via “The Rising Star” (“Hacochav Haba Le’Eroviosion”). The new season will be aired at the beginning of December 2019. The song will be determined in a special televised show where the winner of “The Rising Star” will perform different songs. among the artists reported for taking part in the audition round are: The X-Factor winner Eden Alena, Shira Gavrielov, Niki Goldshtein (Kdan 2013), Israel’s 2019 “Home” writers Ohad Shraga’i and Inbar Witzman, Lihi Toledano (Avi Toledano‘s Daughter “Hora” Eurovision 1982), Moran Aharoni, and TV host Leon Rosenberg. It was also revealed that last year finalist Shefita” and Nicole Raidman will surprise as guests.
The Show will once again be hosted by Assi Azar and Rotem Sela. the show promo was filmed this week at the Eurovision 2020 Venue “Ahoy Rotterdam”.
Latvia will choose artist and song via “Supernova”. the Latvian broadcaster LTV will hold “Supernova” famous national final despite the limited budget,. The solution will probably be in decreasing the show’s number or maybe to hold a grand final show only. The final of the national selection is scheduled to Saturday the 8th of February 2020.
Lithuania will choose its songs and artist via Eurovizijos Atranka. However, this year’s edition will consist fewer songs. The national selection will include 6 shows, in contrast to previous editions which included up to ten shows. Furthermore, every participant is limited to send one song only in order to avoid a scenario such as Monika Marija in 2019. LRT, the Lithuanian broadcaster has also decided that the voting results will be not be announced until the end of the show. Eurovizijos Atranka final will be held in late February 2020.
Malta will choose an artist via “X Factor Malta“. The grand final of the show will be held on the 8th of February 2020. The song will be selected internally. In the auditions round, we will also meet Junior Eurovision Song 2015 winner Destiny Chukunyere.
Norway will choose artist and song via “Melodi Grand Prix”. Melodi Grand Prix 2020 will include 5 semi finals and a grand final. Each semi-final will be focused on another region of Norway: Northern Norway, Central Norway, Western Norway, Eastern Norway and Southern Norway. 4 songs will compete in each semi-final where they will face each other in duels until only one song will be crown as the semi’s winner. 5 other songs will be selected by a jury and get a direct wildcard for the final so than in total, we will have 10 songs competing in the grand final.
Portugal will hold its famous “Festival da Canção” in order to select its artist and song for Rotterdam. 16 songs will compete in the national selection that will include 2 semi finals and a final. 8 songs will compete in each semi final. The winner will be determined by a combination of jury and televote during the month of March 2020.
Slovenia will choose artist and song via EMA national final. before the national final will take place, the Slovenian broadcaster RTVSLO has announced a pre wildcard process named “EMA Freš”. “EMA Freš” will have 18 young artists under the age of 26 that have released up to 3 singles to battle for two golden tickets for the national selection. 10 of the 18 songs that will qualify from the duels round will participate on “EMA Freš” final. the top2 will continue to the for the real thing, the EMA, where they will join 8 other artists for the final. EMA will take place during February 2020.
Spain will be represented by the singer Blas Canto. The national broadcaster has yet decided with what song the singer will represent the country in Rotterdam.
Like every year, the traditional “Melodifestivalen” will use as the mechanisem the select the Swedish entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. the competition rules will stay the same as last year’s concept. 28 acts will compete in 6 shows: 4 semi-final shows, 1 “andra chansen” (a secnod chance round) and a grand final. the show dates are:
• February 1 – semi Final 1 – Linköping, SAAB Arena
• February 8 – semi Final 2 – Göteborg, Scandinavium
• February 15 – semi Final 3 – Luleå, COOP Norrbotten Arena
• February 22 – semi Final 4 – Malmö, Malmö Arena
• February 29 – Andra chansen – Eskilstuna, Stiga Sports Arena
• March 7 – Final – Stockholm, Friends Arena
the only artist that has been officially confirmed for the show is Amanda Aasa that won P4 Nästa wildcard.
Another rumored artist for Melodifestivlen 2020 are:
The Mamas, John Lundvik‘s backing singers in Eurovision 2019
Victor Crone, a Swedish singer who represented Estonia in Eurovision 2019. after he set foot for Estonia, Victor has decided to try again, this time for Sweden and return to The Melodifestivalen stage for the first time since 2015
Hanna Ferm who competed in Melodifestivalen 2019 together with Liamoo
Jakoc Karlberg who conquered the Swedish music chart in 2015:
Despite the rumors on the Swedish media regarding Carola’s return to Melfest, the singer denies the comeback.
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Jag önskar jag kunde säga Ja…., vi kör! Men jag tackade ödmjukt nej tack redan i augusti då en av de absolut starkaste kompositörerna inom Esc sammanhang erbjöd mig en fin låt. Och senast nu i oktober då en annan tungviktare inom denna genre önskade, tillsammans men Christer B, att jag sjöng sången som skulle kunnat bli en sann hyllning till hela universums Skapare. Men det krävs lite mer än så för mig.. efter alla år och olika erfarenheter. Vill ändå säga ett STORT TACK till alla som ändå någonstans hoppades på att det kunde varit sant.. att jag faktiskt skulle vara med! Tack för förtroendet, intresset, kämparglöden och förvåningen.. ( men ändå inte.) För du som känner mig Vet att jag gillar oväntade skeenden i livet. hi hi Men just i detta läge finns det bara andra vinnare än jag. Och just nu är jag faktiskt smartare än så – än att tacka ja. Vem vet i framtiden. Men just nu gick jag inte igång tillräckligt på varken låtarna, mello eller medias circus. Jag bygger något annat på hemma plan från mitt hjärta, på lång sikt. Men med stor tacksamhet för vad Melodifestivalen en gång var för mig, o för många andra. Tack! Och media får gärna fråga den säkraste källan på en gång innan ni basunerar ut på tv att jag är ’klar’ … bara att det kan få ske? Puh! Mina uppgifter till mitt management finns ovan i min bio och är tydligt som korvspad i en korvgryta! I mitt advents program tar jag bla upp varför jag av ren överlevnads instinkt och som beskyddare av mina barn INTE kan ställa upp i varken Mello, Lets Dance el andra liknande program just nu – även om jag både älskar att dansa ( hemma i köket ) eller tävla. Det är ju egentligen helt förfärligt och beklagligt men så länge den nivån på arbetsmoral finns mellan kvällspress och SVT så vore jag mycket naiv om jag ännu en gång skulle tillåta mig vara offer för det. Vet att allt har sin tid och jag är inte långsint heller. Men just nu finns visheten högt upp på listan och då kommer både barnen och en påsk produktion före melodifestivalen. Till och med Gud Fader själv skulle behöva övertyga mig rätt hårt att vara med. Då förstår ni. Då skulle C.B behöva be så intensivt att få med mig innan JESUS hinner göra sin stora comeb
The national broadcaster have received 515 songs. The song and artist will be selected internally. Five of these, you guess right, belongs to Aly Ryan 🙂
yayyy @srfesc 🇨🇭 announced they received a total of 515 song submissions this year for @Eurovision 2020. I’M 5 OF THOSE🙋🏼♀️
Motto this year is ‘open up’ like opening up to artists from other countries & with a different nationality?😍But if I go, it wld mean opening up emotionally.
— Aly Ryan ✨ (@alyryanmusic) October 25, 2019
UK will choose song and artist internally.
Together with the announcement, the broadcast confirmed that they are saying goodbye to their previous song selection mechanism “Eurovision: You Decide” and replaced it with a new collaboration with record company BMG. its is still early to know whether the song will be selected behind closed doors or in a new innovative format but it was clear to see that the BBC is thrilled from the new partnership and ready to make their shared vision into reality.
— BBC Eurovision🇬🇧 (@bbceurovision) September 16, 2019
Despite last year’s drama that lead Ukraine to withdraw from the contest. Ukraine confirmed its participation in Rotterdam and the return of the song selection process “Vidbir”. The national selection will include 2 semi finals and grand final.
The first semi final will be held on the 8th of February 2020.
The second Semi final will be held on the 15th of February 2020
The final will be held on 22nd of February 2020.
UA:PBC the Ukrainian broadcaster has added new rules though that demands from the participating artists to approve they have not performed in Russia territory since 2014.