The Scoop

Could 43 become 44…?

Yesterday, EBU released the list of all countries participating in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. 43 countries appeared on the list, including the surprise from Croatia and the uncertainty that was Bulgaria. Today however, a rumour says that we might still get that 44th country in Stockholm…
No, it’s not China. Don’t worry, EBU have firmly said that China will not be sending an entrant to Stockholm. It’s an old, familiar face who may still be going around to collect the funds for Stockholm… Slovakia!
It’s just a rumour, but a rumour that deserves our attention. The rumour was found on Eurosongland, a Belgian fansite. They state that Slovakia have asked for an extended deadline – until 18th December – to get the funding together. When asked about their source, they respond:

We have one e-mail from people of RTVS and one from someone who stand close to eurovision.

Obviously, we don’t know how true this is, so we at reached out to the EBU, both on Twitter and by asking Sietse Bakker, the Event Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, directly. Bakker neither confirmed nor denied the rumour.
So we now have Eurosongland claiming it and Bakker refusing to deny the story. Enough reason to see what we actually know from Slovakia regarding their possible 2016 participation. The answer is short: Nothing. RTVS have never publicly made a statement regarding Stockholm. There have been alleged e-mails  with non-confirmations and postponed decisions, but there is no statement anywhere which says: RTVS have decided not to enter the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest.
Admitted, they’ve never said they were trying their best to get the funding together, like Bulgarias did on many occasions. So we don’t know either where we stand.
It’ll definitely be worth keeping an eye on the developments in the next few weeks to see what’s going to be true in this story. Slovakia are currently one of the least successful Eurovision countries of all. In the semifinal era, they’ve entered four times and never managed to qualify for the final. During the 90s, Slovakia entered three times, scoring a total of 42 points spread out over three participations, with their best result being an 18th place in 1996 with Marcel Palonder’s Kým Nás Máš. Slovakia last entered in 2012, when Max Jason Mai finished in last in his semifinal with Don’t Close Your Eyes.

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