Slovenia: ManuElla and BQL among 16 acts competing in EMA 2018

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For the past two years, Slovenia has missed out on making the grand final of Eurovision. But now they could be on their way to making a comeback. Broadcaster RTVSLO today announced the 16 acts competing in EMA (Evrovizijska Melodija). And there are some familiar names in the mix.

Last month, RTVSLO revealed they’d received 108 entries for the 2018 edition of its national final. It’s an increase on the 90 entries the broadcaster received for the 2017 edition and the 61 entries for 2016. However, it is still down on the 145 entries received for EMA 2015.

And from that 108, only 16 have made it to the live shows. RTVSLO revealed the lineup today on social media.

The lineup includes many returning acts. Slovenia’s 2016 act ManuElla returns, after placing 16th in her semi-final in Stockholm with “Blue and Red”. And veteran performer Tanja Ribic, who represented Slovenia at Eurovision 1997 with “Zbudi se”, is back for the 21st anniversary of her first appearance.

There are also returning artists from the EMA grand final of 2017. Runner-up and televote winner BQL is back, as is light rock band KiNG FOO, and pink-haired songstress Nika Zorjan, soulful singer Nuska Drascek, as well as semi-finalist Lea Sirk.

The line-up also includes PopRock Festival 2017 winner Anabel, Melodije Morja in Sonca Festival 2017 contestant Gregor Ravnik, and Slovenia’s Got Talent act Marina Martensson.

Slovenia’s EMA 2018 – competing acts

  • Anabel – “Pozitiva”
  • BQL – “Ptica”
  • Gregor Ravnik – “Zdaj je ?as”
  • INA SHAI – “V nebo”
  • Indigo – “Vesna”
  • KiNG FOO – “Žive sanje”
  • Lara Kadis – “Zdaj sem tu”
  • Lea Sirk – “Cirque”
  • ManuElla – “Dan potem”
  • Marina Martensson – “Blizu”
  • MILA – “Svoboda”
  • Nika Zorjan – “Uspavanka”
  • Nuška Draš?ek – “Ne zapusti me zdaj”
  • ORTER – “Tiso? let”
  • Proper – “Ukraden cvet”
  • Tanja Ribic – “Ljudje”

RTVSLO has also confirmed the voting system for EMA. It will be a 50/50 televote and jury vote split. The jury vote is getting an overhaul, perhaps taking inspiration from the mixed jury groups of Finland’s UMK in 2015 and 2016 or the different music-related juries of Italy’s Sanremo Music Festival.

Gone are the six regional Slovenian juries. In their place will be six juries representing the radio industry, the television industry, singers, composers, OGAE Slovenia and an international panel.

The overhauled jury system follows the 2017 jury, who were overwhelmingly in favour of Omar Naber with “On My Way” and much less enthusiastic for the televote winner BQL with “Heart of Gold”. The jury’s instinct proved flawed — Naber placed second to last in his semi-final, ensuring Slovenia would again miss the grand final at Eurovision.

What do you think of the line-up of EMA 2018? Who do you think will win? Who should represent Slovenia at Eurovision 2018? Share your thoughts below!

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