After the cancellation of the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest, most of the artists who competed in a National Final, have confirmed that they would like to represent their nation in the 2021 contest.
In the case of Finland, YLE revealed early on that UMK will be used to select their Eurovision 2021 representative. Despite this, UMK 2020 winner Aksel publicly mentioned his interest in sending an entry.
However, in a recent interview with Voice.Fi, Aksel has confirmed that he did not submit an entry for UMK 2021.
Uncertainty with COVID-19, amongst other things, are the reasons for Aksel’s non-participation
In his interview, Aksel confirms that he was going to submit an entry for this year’s UMK. However, he didn’t in the end. Despite this, he has revealed that he does not rule out participating again in the future.
I was about to apply, but then I did not apply. Now let’s take a little look at when someday you could apply again. I’m not really saying I would ever want to participate again, but let’s see sometime then.Aksel not ruling out competing in UMK again (translated)
In regards to COVID, Aksel also mentioned the uncertainty of whether or not Eurovision 2021 will take place.
Maybe in a way, it was whether Eurovision will come next year at all when the terrible situations are still on.Aksel on whether or not Eurovision 2021 will take place (translated)
However, fear not, as the EBU has confirmed that the contest will take place, when they unveiled the four scenarios planned in order to ensure that the contest takes place. Recently, it was announced that a ‘live-on-tape’ performance is being recorded to ensure the contest takes place.
Finally, Aksel was also asked if he would’ve competed if he was given an automatic spot at UMK. However, he was divided on the subject.
Maybe in that case I would have participated if I had automatically got a spot. On the other hand, it is fair that the place in the competition is not given directly. I don’t want any special treatment.Aksel on if he was offered a direct spot to compete at UMK (translated)
Despite YLE confirming that Aksel will not be offered a direct spot to compete, he did mention in his interview that he did have a positive experience with his UMK participation.
Finland to select Eurovision 2021 representative via UMK
As previously announced, it was confirmed that UMK will be used to select their Eurovision 2021 representative. It was already revealed that seven artists have now been selected to compete. They will be revealed in a press conference on January 19, with UMK 2021 taking place on February 20.
Finland at the Eurovision Song Contest
Finland made their Eurovision in 1961 with the entry ‘Valoa Ikkunassa‘ by Laila Kinnunen. Over the years Finland has seen moderate success in their 53 appearances. Making 43 finals with 12 top 10 placings in that time. But also receiving nul points on three occasions and almost a dozen last places. However this never deterred the plucky Nordic nation. Which eventually tasted victory with Lordi and the metal banger ‘Hard Rock Hallelujah‘ in 2006.
In 2020, Aksel won this year’s edition of ‘UMK’ with his song ‘Looking Back’ which was written by Joonas Angeria, Whitney Phillips, Connor McDonough, Riley McDonough, and Toby McDonough, and was set to participate in the second half of the second semi-final until its cancellation.
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