In an online press conference, the Executive Supervisor and Head of Live Events for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest, Jon Ola Sand, was asked about the introduction of semi-finals in JESC. And he is not against the idea.
As Executive Supervisor for the contest, Jon Ola Sand must think about the future and the growth of JESC. This is why, in an online press conference, someone asked him wether semi-finals would be introduced at some point in Junior Eurovision. This was his reply :
It actually could happen if there are sufficient interest from countries to participate. And we see that the popularity is growing, so at some point we might consider to do that, if we get more broadcasters and countries on board. And I seriously believe that the interest will be stronger in the years to come.Jon Ola Sand, ESC and JESC Executive Producer
He confirmed this when he later said that he hoped Spain would return to the contest, thus bringing more countries on board.
This year, the JESC has reached its biggest number of participants ever, with 20 countries taking part in the show. The rules actually had to change, because they only allowed for 18 countries to participate. Jon Ola Sand was asked wether or not the current number was a definite maximum:
We will evaluate after this year to see if this is a good amount or we should go back to 18. When it comes to expanding it to 26 we would have a much longer show, and for most of the broadcaster it would be difficult to schedule. It would be hard to schedule a show that is exceeding 2 hours.
There are pros and cons, we are really discussing this, if the interest is growing we should be one way or another be able to harvest this.Jon Ola Sand, ESC and JESC Executive Producer
What do you think? Will interest rise among other countries? Could a semi-final format be possible for JESC? Tell us more in the comments below, or on social media at @escxtra !