Dimi Dimi Dambaje! Yes, it’s time for a celebration. That’s because Albania’s national broadcaster — Radio Televizioni Shqiptar (RTSH) — has confirmed that Albania will participate in Junior Eurovision 2017 in Tbilisi. This brings the total number of participating countries to ten so far.
Despite earlier reports that the nation had already chosen a singer, the broadcaster has confirmed that it will actually stage a Junior Song Festival on September 23. Sixteen young artists — selected by a professional jury — will compete on the night. It’s not yet clear how the winner will be chosen.
RTSH’s selection method marks a new format, as last year they chose Klesta Qehaja and her song “Besoj” through the Festivali i Këngës për Fëmijë, the country’s traditional song contest for children. The fate of its competitors was decided by a panel of music professionals.
Young Klesta — who was already a rather famous child, having covered both Rona Nishliu and Beyoncé on nationally televised singing shows — ended up in 13th place at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in Malta.
Those wishing to be her successor can submit their songs to RTSH by September 1.
The songs should not be less than 2 minutes 45 seconds or more than 3 minutes in length, and must have been created after Albania’s 2016 JESC participation. It should be completely original in its music and lyrical form. The artist must sing live at the National Final. Babes, you can’t lip-synch for your lives here.