Lisbon 2018

More Changes Announced for Sanremo 2018

Further to the recent announcement regarding a new host and the involvement of record labels for Sanremo 2018, Italian broadcaster RAI has said that there will be some additional changes for the festival next year.

The Sanremo Music Festival

Claudio Baglioni was speaking as new artistic director and host of Sanremo Music Festival on RAI’s news programme TG1. In the interview he said Sanremo will once again be used to select Italy’s entry for Eurovision 2018 in Lisbon. Baglioni also revealed a some new changes for the festival which will run from the 6th to 10th February 2018.

Claudio Baglioni
Claudio Baglioni – Facebook

The changes for 2018

The first change is that there will be no eliminations throughout the week, like in previous years. Sanremo 2018 will still have the usual two categories of Campioni (Champions) and Nuove Proposte (Newcomers). The winning artist from the Campioni category will still be able to make a decision as to whether they will go on to represent Italy in Lisbon. The last time we saw this rule implemented was in 2016 when the band, Stadio, won Sanremo but graciously declined to go to the Eurovision Song Contest that year in Stockholm. Instead, it was the festival’s runner up, Francesca Michelin, who represented Italy in 2016.
Another change for Sanremo 2018 will be the return of the duets which last featured in 2011. Artists from both categories will perform their songs alongside musical guests. The duets could have a significant effect on the overall placing of each entry, especially in the later stages of the festival.
We can safely assume that arrangements for Sanremo 2018 are already well underway, given the application deadline (6th October 2017) for the Campioni category has now passed. Unlike the Eurovision Song Contest, the rules for Sanremo 2018 state that songs can be up to 4 minutes long. As Francesco Gabbani did in 2017, any winning song over 3 minutes will have to be edited down before the contest in May.


The Campioni Grand Final will be held on Saturday 10th February 2018. We will see the same voting set up for the 68th edition of the festival. Each entry will be ranked based on a 50% public televote, 30% press vote, and a 20% expert jury vote. After this process, the top three will then sing again in a super final. The winner will be announced based on an average of the votes taken from each performance of the song over the course of the week.

Italy at Eurovision

Italy was one of seven countries that participated the in very first Eurovision Song Contest in 1956. Italy has since participated 43 times over the years and won twice – once in 1964 and again in 1990. In 2017 Italy went into the contest as favourites with Francesco Gabbani and “Occidentali’s Karma”. However, the song ended up coming 6th place with 334 points.
What do you think of Italy’s chances for success in 2018? Let us know in the comments section below.

Matt Baker

As a writer with the Eurovision disposition it was only inevitable that I should find myself merging these two interests. If it wasn't Sonia singing "Better the Devil You Know" that got me hooked on Eurovision, then it was the Gina G banger "Just a Little Bit". The 90's is where it all started for me, who knows where I'll end up!

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