ESC Daily

ESC Daily
26
July
2017

Portugal: National final to be held on 4th March

Portugal: National final to be held on 4th March

RTP, the Portuguese national broadcaster have announced the dates and venue for their national final, Festival da Canção. The final will take place on the 4th March at the Multiusos de Guimarães.

The semi final dates are both on Sundays. These will take place on the 18th of February and the 25th of February with the final on 4th of March. Portugal won the 2017 Eurovision Song Contest, so the winner of Festival da Canção will represent them on home soil.

Venue

Multiusos de Guimarães is a multi purpose arena in Guimarães. It is primarly used for Basketball but can also be used for other things. In recent years, Festival da Canção always took place in Portugal’s capital city Lisbon. However, with the Eurovision final weeks taking place in Lisbon this year, RTP moved their national selection to another city.

With this move, RTP have certainly upped their game in terms of venue size for the national final. Last years venue, Coliseu dos Recreios in Lisbon only seated between 2486 and 4000 at a push. This years venue seats above 5000 people.

Guimarães is located in the district of Braga. The area is served by Porto international airport, and lies on the Porto to Guimarães line on the train. Guimarães is one of the most cultural places in the district.

Four more years

RTP will organize the next 4 editions of Festival da Canção all in different cities. This statement suggests that they will stay in the Eurovision Song Contest for at least another 4 years.

Categories: ESC Daily

26
July
2017

Eurovision 2018: Lisbon hosts the contest on week of the 12th of May

Eurovision 2018: Lisbon hosts the contest on week of the 12th of May

The European Broadcasting Union has officially decided to confirm Lisbon, the Portuguese capital as the 2018 Eurovision host city. The dates of the contest will be 8th, 10th, 12th of May.

Lisbon has emerged victorious and will host the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. Earlier, RTP did confirm Lisbon as the host city but now the EBU confirmed the news as well. It had soon become clear that Portugal’s capital city was the only one providing a viable bid, with both the infrastructure and the hotel capacity meeting the EBU’s requirements to host this huge event.

Jon Ola Sand, Executive Supervisor of The Eurovision Song Contest said the following:

We are very pleased to announce that RTP will be hosting the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in Lisbon. Both the City and the venue have presented exemplary proposals, and we look forward to working together to make Portugal’s first ever Eurovision the most exciting one yet. We would like to congratulate RTP on their professional and detailed assessments of all the bids.

Gonçalo Reis, the CEO of RTP gave the following statement:

Hosting the Eurovision 2018 is a great opportunity for Portugal, Lisbon, the entertainment industry, and RTP. We look forward to organizing an event that will show our creative capabilities.

Lisbon as a city

Lisbon is the capital of Portugal and has a population of around 2.7 million people. It has a twin city connection with 17 different cities including Madrid, Budapest and Zagreb. Lisbon is the wealthiest region in Portugal, producing 45% of the Portuguese GDP, which makes it well above the European per capita average. Two UNESCO World heritage sites are located in Lisbon: Belem Tower and Jeronimos Monastery. Average temperatures for May are between 18 and 23, with a record high of 37.8 degrees centigrade.

MEO Arena

The contest will be held in the MEO Arena. It is the joint third largest indoor arena in Europe and the largest in Portugal. The arena already hosted many concerts, from several big superstars including Beyonce and Ariana Grande.

The MEO Arena has a capacity of 20.000 people, though its normal capacity may be slightly reduced for a big stage and camera positions. According to ESC Insight the other venues are likely to be close to the arena. The arena itself is well suitable for public transport, due to the nearby Oriente metro and train station. The Park of Nations area which surrounds the venue has plenty of options for support facilities such as a press centre, Euroclub and Eurovillage as well as many bars and cafes. RTP will not be short of eager sponsors. Lots of companies will want to be associated with this long overdue hosting of Eurovision.

Dates

Dates are the 8th, 10th and 12th of May. This means that the contest, as opposed to last year, will now not clash with big international football matches. Last year’s viewing figures took a small hit due to the clash with Champions League semi finals.

The contest in 2018 will be Portugal’s first hosting of the Eurovision Song Contest, after Salvador Sobral’s runaway victory in Kiev. Portugal have been in the contest since 1964, and have had 49 appearances in that time. Of those, 41 entries got to the finals.

Categories: ESC Daily

25
July
2017

Eurovision 2018: Lisbon hosts the contest on weekend of the 12th of May

Eurovision 2018: Lisbon hosts the contest on weekend of the 12th of May

The European Broadcasting Union has officially decided to confirm Lisbon, the Portuguese capital as the 2018 Eurovision host city. The dates of the contest will be 8th, 10th, 12th of May

Lisbon has emerged victorious and will host the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest. Earlier, RTP did confirm Lisbon as the host city but now the EBU confirmed the news as well. It had soon become clear that Portugal’s capital city was the only one providing a viable bid, with both the infrastructure and the hotel capacity meeting the EBU’s requirements to host this huge event.

Jon Ola Sand, Executive Supervisor of The Eurovision Song Contest said the following:

We are very pleased to announce that RTP will be hosting the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest in Lisbon. Both the City and the venue have presented exemplary proposals, and we look forward to working together to make Portugal’s first ever Eurovision the most exciting one yet. We would like to congratulate RTP on their professional and detailed assessments of all the bids.

Gonçalo Reis, the CEO of RTP gave the following statement:

Hosting the Eurovision 2018 is a great opportunity for Portugal, Lisbon, the entertainment industry, and RTP. We look forward to organizing an event that will show our creative capabilities.

Lisbon as a city

Lisbon is the capital of Portugal and has a population of around 2.7 million people. It has a twin city connection with 17 different cities including Madrid, Budapest and Zagreb. Lisbon is the wealthiest region in Portugal, producing 45% of the Portuguese GDP, which makes it well above the European per capita average. Two UNESCO World heritage sites are located in Lisbon: Belem Tower and Jeronimos Monastery. Average temperatures for May are between 18 and 23, with a record high of 37.8 degrees centigrade.

MEO Arena

The contest will be held in the MEO Arena. It is the joint third largest indoor arena in Europe and the largest in Portugal. The arena already hosted many concerts, from several big superstars including Beyonce and Ariana Grande.

The MEO Arena has a capacity of 20.000 people, though its normal capacity may be slightly reduced for a big stage and camera positions. According to ESC Insight the other venues are likely to be close to the arena. The arena itself is well suitable for public transport, due to the nearby Oriente metro and train station. The Park of Nations area which surrounds the venue has plenty of options for support facilities such as a press centre, Euroclub and Eurovillage as well as many bars and cafes. RTP will not be short of eager sponsors. Lots of companies will want to be associated with this long overdue hosting of Eurovision.

Dates

Dates are the 8th, 10th and 12th of May.

The contest in 2018 will be Portugal’s first hosting of the Eurovision Song Contest, after Salvador Sobral’s runaway victory in Kiev. Portugal have been in the contest since 1964, and have had 49 appearances in that time. Of those, 41 entries got to the finals.

Categories: ESC Daily

13
July
2017

Switzerland: International jury introduced in national final

Switzerland: International jury introduced in national final

Switzerland has revealed some changes in their selection process for the Eurovision Song Contest. The Swiss will now use an international jury in the hope to improve their results at the contest.

SRF has launched the new Swiss selection process for the Eurovision Song Contest on Thursday. The regional quotas have been removed and instead a new focus is placed on finding the right voice for the each competing song.

Once the six songs for the final have been selected SRG SSR (Switzerland’s radio and TV broadcaster) will let each song be performed with a number of different singers, to find the perfect voice for each song. At the national final on February 4, the six songs will be performed. The Swiss public will then have a 50% say in the result, with a new international jury will also decide 50% of the vote.

Categories: ESC Daily

08
July
2017

Australia: First thoughts on a national final

Australia: First thoughts on a national final

Paul Clarke, Australia’s Head of Delegation, exclusively informed ESC Daily in May that Australia is planning a national final (assuming they remain in Eurovision). Although nothing is set in stone, a national final is certainly a viable option for the 2018 Australian Eurovision selection process. Joshua Mayne takes a look at how a national final could work in Australia.

Broadcaster

Obviously all Eurovision related content comes first through SBS, the network that has broadcasted the contest in Australia since 1983. If SBS were to broadcast a national final, it is likely that they would partner with Blink TV, the same production company that assists with their Eurovision Song Contest broadcast.

Other potential partners like Channel 7 and Channel 9 may have a larger budget, however SBS have a rich history associated with Europe and Eurovision, understanding Eurovision and its importance more than most other networks. Shows such as Rockwiz and this year’s “Eurovision Top 40 Songs” prove that SBS have the capacity to create their own professional live music program.

If a national final show in Australia is to be a success, this could ultimately lead to a bigger and more expensive production. In such a scenario, more partners could come into play. However, a relatively small production is the ideal place to start, with plenty of room to grow.

Are the big names ready for a national final?

Once the idea for a national final was raised in May this year, there were immediate concerns about who would be willing to compete in such an event. These concerns have some weight behind them. A national final would be something new, unique and relatively unknown in the Australian music and television landscape. This could possibly result in artists hesitating to enter.

However, Australia is a naturally competitive nation that thrives on any opportunity where there is a potential to win. After three straight top ten finishes, it’s clear to see that they are also pretty good at it.

Isaiah Firebrace told ESC Daily in Kiev that he personally would consider competing. He also believes that many other artists would want to take part. He later said that “it would be really cool to see people coming together to celebrate music and for the opportunity to come to Eurovision”.

Record label

Currently, Sony Music partner with SBS and Blink TV to produce and broadcast Eurovision in Australia, which has influenced all of Australia’s past internal selections. Guy Sebastian, Dami Im and Isaiah Firebrace are all signed on a record label with Sony Music Australia. If a national final is to occur, which label records can send entrants? To ensure an inclusive competition, it would be ideal for entries to be open to all record labels.

Dami Im and Isaiah Firebrace Eurovision AustraliaAnother feasible option would be to reward the winner of a singing show like the X-Factor Australia with a direct ticket to the upcoming national final. This would create a prestige around the national final, and ensure that at least one relevant artist would take part.

X-Factor Australia – a show that brought us Dami Im and Isaiah Firebrace – will no longer be on tv in the foreseeable future. However other reality singing programs including The Voice Australia (which brought forward Anja Nissen) are options. Once again, record label clashes could be a problem. But this is a bridge for the official organisers to cross if (or when) they reach it.

Format

In terms of selecting the actual contestants, an auditioning process is most logical. Artists could submit their song online, with the host broadcaster ultimately selecting the finalists to compete in the final. This method is simple and is used by many successful national final organisers, including Melodifestivalen. It would ensure that artists of all types have the opportunity to compete.

Voting at the actual final will also have to be a major consideration. Should it be only jury votes, only public votes, or a mixture of both? A mixture would be the safest option. It ensures that professional opinion is weighted evenly with what the nation actually wants. It also reflects the nature of the Eurovision Song Contest which is currently decided by a mixture of jury and televote.

BBC Eurovision logo You DecideSimple TV-show

Modelling the first Australian national final on the United Kingdom’s “You Decide” format would be a great place to start. Six artists, six songs, and a fairly condensed program is very achievable. It is also ideal for an audience unfamiliar with national finals.

Although Australian Eurovision viewership statistics are very positive, Australia has only been competing for the past three contests, with contestants chosen via an internal selection process. This is now the norm; therefore a lot of viewers are unaware of how common national finals are in Europe. A national final is a great way to increase the anticipation and excitement around Eurovision. Unless you’re a passionate fan, Eurovision is not on the agenda prior to May.

If Australia is to hold a national final, it needs to be as simple a format as possible. This way, the new Australian audience can grasp the concept, and begin to learn more about how Eurovision (often) operates in Europe. It will only do favours for the contest in Australia, increasing exposure and popularity.

Categories: ESC Daily

01
July
2017

Malta: Same format for January 2018 national final

Malta: Same format for January 2018 national final

The Maltese national final will be held in January 2018. That is the date set out in the TVM MESC 2018 Rules and Regulations document. The venue and exact date are still yet to be confirmed.

PBS, the national broadcaster in Malta, published the rules and regulations which the competing acts in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2018 will have to abide by. The most significant rules are as follows:

  • The Winner of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017 will be ineligible to compete (meaning Claudia Faniello cannot compete as an artist, but the rules are not clear as to whether she can compete as a song writer).
  • The song (including music and lyrics) must not have been released commercially before Wednesday 1st November 2017.
  • All artists must have Maltese nationality (or dual nationality). Where there is a group of 2 or more people, the lead member of the group must have Maltese (or dual) nationality.
  • Authors and composers can be of any nationality.
  • Artists must be at at least 16 years old by Tuesday 1st May 2018.

The selection process will take place in the following stages:

  • 1st shortlist – 60 songs (Judges selection)
  • 2nd shortlist – 30 songs (Local and International juries)
  • Final – 16 songs (100% televote) – January 2018.

Despite the disappointing non qualification result in Kiev, PBS will not make changes to the Grand Final format, and will stick with the 100% televote for 2018.

Categories: ESC Daily

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