After ending up last for the second time in a row and all the drama surrounding the preselection in the past two years, the German Eurovision responsibles were supposed to come up with a new plan. What they finally came up with might not be a completely new idea, but instead something that has worked before: a casting show.

Just like Unser Star für Oslo back in 2010, which led to Lena and eventually to winning Eurovision, Unser Song 2017 is looking for a brand-new talent to represent Germany in Kyiv next year. Any single artist can send in a video to apply as of today. A group of musical and Eurovision experts – including people from NDR and Stefan Raab‘s production company Raab TV – will judge all the applications and pick out the 30 best, five of which will eventually make it to the live show. Seperately, the experts will also choose songs especially written for the Eurovision Song Contest by nationally and internationally successful producers.

The national final will be held in a single show on 9 February 2017, 20.15 pm, where the five chosen candidates will present the chosen songs to the tv audience and another group of experts: Not only Lena herself, but also singer-songwriter Tim Bendzko and German Volksmusik legend Florian Silbereisen will comment on the songs, the artists, and the performances. But those three are not the ones to decide who’s to win the ticket to Kyiv – it will be up to the German audience alone to choose their representative.

The concept of Unser Song 2017 might actually be a good way to get Germany back on track in terms of Eurovision. The casting show thing has done the trick before, not only with Lena, but also back in 2004 with Max Mutzke and in 2012 with Roman Lob who both ended up 8th. So, who knows, Germany might have a chance to break out of their Eurovision misery after all.

I’m German and have been Eurovision-addicted ever since Lena won in 2010 – it’s a young love but all the more passionate! As a volunteer at the Song Contest 2015 in Vienna I got connected to the escXtra team. I’m scared of the day that Ralph Siegel will win again.

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