The Swiss broadcaster, Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen (SRF) has announced that the final stage of their selection process to select the Swiss entrant to the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest is underway. They also announced that the entry will be announced in March although the date of the reveal was not specified. The contest is due to take place in Tel-Aviv, Israel.
Change of Direction.
In the Eight years that spanned 2011-2018, Switzerland has used the National Final format Die Grosse Entscheidungsshow (The Big Decision Show). But for 2019, SRF decided to take a different approach to the selection format.
The Internal Selection Format.
As a result, we reported that SRF decided that the way forward was to opt for Internal Selection. They announced that a panel of 100 members of the public. 6100 people applied to be a part of this “Public Jury”. These were narrowed down to 1000. Furthermore these 1000 were interviewed to therefore narrow them down the the final 100. 20 industry experts would also help to decide who will represent Switzerland. So the voting will be on a 50/50 basis. One of these industry experts was revealed as Romania’s 2010 Third-Place and 2014 entrant, Ovi.
The Italian Job
You may also remember back in September the Italian speaking broadcaster Radiotelevizione Svizzera di lingua Italiana (RSI) opened their selection process. We reported that to narrow down the songs that they got sent they enlisted the public to help them out. They then announced the three songs that would be their regional wildcards to go to the next stage of the process. These three songs are the only songs that we publicly know about. They are:-
- Julia Maletta -“Mama (I Walk Alone)”.
- Sebalter – “Carry the Light”.
- Scilla Hess – “Playground”.
The fate of these three RSI wildcards are currently unknown. It’s not known if none, one, two or all three of these make up the final five songs that are still in the running.
Come Together – The Swiss way!
Most noteworthy is that SRF (German), RTS (French) and RTR (Romansh) can also add wildcard entries if they wish. On the German arm 420 songs were sent in to SRF to then narrow down to their three wildcards. The French arm instructed their hopefuls to send their song to the radio station RTS Option Music. The Romansh arm didn’t disclose any information as to how they will submit their own three wild cards.
The last time the Swiss used this format, was back in 2010. They chose Michael Von Der Heide with the song “Il pleut de l’or”. The song subsequently went on the finish Seventeenth and Last-Place. Only amassing Two points.
Five Golden Songs!
So, this process is now ended. Using the 120 strong jury, the regional wildcards have been narrowed down to the Final Five. These Five songs will now be tested with various producers and singers. The selected combinations will enter one final round of scrutiny. As a result one song will be the “winner” and will be announced in March.
Switzerland at the Eurovision Song Contest.
One of the “Founding Fathers” of Eurovision. Switzerland have been here from the start in 1956. Only missing Four contests in 1995, 1999, 2001 and 2003 due to the relegation rule.
As well as being one of the founding fathers, they are also the inaugural hosts and the inaugural winners when the late Lys Assia won with the song “Refrain”. The nation had to wait another 32 years to get their second and currently last win. In 1988, with the the Canadian Celine Dion. Celine, who was at the time little known in Europe, won with the song “Ne partez pas sans moi” with 137 points.
They have come last in the Final, five times and last in the Semi-Finals, four times. Switzerland have only Qualified from the Semi-Finals three times. Their most successful entrant under the current Semi-Finals format came in 2005, where Vanilla Ninja came in Eighth-Place with the song “Cool Vibes” amassing 128 points.
Are you hopeful of the Swiss chances this year? Who do you hope they will approach? Tell us in the comments below or contact us on @escxtra on all platforms.