For almost a decade, Sveriges Radio’s song competition P4 Nästa has offered a wildcard spot in Melodifestivalen the following year. However, with the 2021 edition coming up later this year, Swedish broadcaster SVT has confirmed that this collaboration has been “paused” for this year.
Since 2012, one finalist of P4 Nästa has been granted a slot in Melodifestivalen, Sweden’s juggernaut national selection for Eurovision. Notably, a P4 Nästa wildcard had yet to advance to the second chance round, let alone the final of the selection.
The possible end of this agreement was first uncovered by Swedish blog ESC Panelen, who noticed that the rules for P4 Nästa 2021 did not include any information about a Melodifestivalen wildcard. The blog then reached out to P4 Nästa project manager Maths Broborg, who confirmed that the wildcard will not be on the table for 2021 entrants to the competition. SVT later confirmed that the wildcard had indeed been “paused” for this year.
Note, P4 Nästa 2021 participants can still participate in Melodifestivalen 2022, but will have to enter along with everyone else as part of the selection’s submission process.
Wildcard acts in Melodifestivalen
No act chosen to be in Melodifestivalen via the P4 Nästa wildcard has ever made it past the semi-final stage. The best placing one of these acts ever received was 5th in the semifinal, when Terese Fredenwall and Smilo achieved this in 2013 and 2016, respectively.
Last year, Julia Alfrida placed 6th in P4 Nästa with her song “Dark Doom”, and was selected to compete in Melodifestivalen 2021. Back in February, she placed 7th in the second heat with her entry “Rich”.
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