Christer Björkman comes to Cyprus… as auditions for national final begin

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It’s the sunny Eastern Mediterranean country that is returning to a national final after two years of internal selection. Now the selection process for Cyprus‘ national final is underway, with Sweden’s Christer Björkman flying in to join the audition panel.

Björkman was joined by choreographer Charis Savvas and songwriter Alex P — the dream team who will be behind Cyprus’ entry for Lisbon.

Broadcaster CyBC’s official Facebook account showed the three men sitting around a table, enjoying coffee. They were seen with notepads, apparently already hard at work.

Auditions for the #EurovisionFinalists begin today! Who will compete to perform our eurovision entry this year?

Posted by CYBC: Eurovision Cyprus on Thursday, November 23, 2017

In September, CyBC confirmed that the Greek-Swedish songwriter Alexander “Alex P” Papaconstantinou would write the song for the winner of the national final. He’s previously co-written hits for Latin stars Jennifer Lopez, Enrique Iglesias and Marc Anthony. He was also behind Cyprus’ entry for Eurovision 2012, Ivi Adamou’s “La La Love”.

It’s expected that Alex P will deliver another upbeat tune for Cyprus to perform in Lisbon, so the national final will be structured to find a singer who can deliver in that style.

While Charis Savvas hasn’t been confirmed as the choreographer for 2018, it is expected he will return to this role. Savvas also choreographed and produced the staging for Hovig’s “Gravity” in Kyiv.

This isn’t the first time Christer Björkman has been involved with Cyprus’ national selection. In 2015, the schlagermaster general took time out from his Melfest duties to be part of the Eurovision Song Project jury.

The 2018 selection panel will pick a shortlist of acts who will compete at the national final in January. But we won’t hear the song for Lisbon at the national final. Acts will instead perform covers of popular songs to give audiences an idea of their talents.

Once the winner has been selected, Alex P will tailor his composition for the winner and they’ll be all set for Lisbon.

Cyprus at Eurovision

Since 2015, Cyprus has always qualified for the grand final at Eurovision. However, they have consistently placed down the right-hand side of the scoreboard, perhaps not delivering the results the broadcaster has hoped for.

In 2015, CyBC held a national final, the Eurovision Song Project. The winner of that was young singer Giannis “John” Karagiannis, who went to Vienna with the simple ballad  “One Thing I Should Have Done”. It placed 22nd.

The Eurovision Song Project proved to be a talent bank fo CyBC to draw upon. In 2016, third-placed act Minus One was internally selected. Their song “Alter Ego” — co-written by the Swedish maestro Thomas G:son — placed 21st n Stockholm.

In 2017, it was the turn of Eurovision Song Project fourth-placed act Hovig. In Kyiv, he performed “Gravity” — also written by Thomas G:son. It mirrored Minus One’s result, also placing 21st in the grand final.

CyBC will be hoping that the winner of the upcoming national final combined with Alex P’s song will be enough to get Cyprus onto the left-hand side of the scoreboard.

What do you think? Who would you like to see competing in the Cyprus national final? What sort of song should Cyprus send? Sound off below!

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