It’s the country that won its first Eurovision after a five decade long wait. And on Sunday, Portugal’s quest to find Salvador Sobral’s successor will begin in earnest with the first semi-final of Festival da Canção 2018.
Now, for the first time since 2011, RTP is giving fans a taster of what to expect. Earlier today, the broadcaster released 45-second snippets of each song competing in this week’s show.
Listen to all 13 snippets in the playlist below.
Festival da Canção 2018 semi-final one line-up
Of the semi-final one acts, Anabela is probably the best known name in Eurovision circles. She represented Portugal in 1993, securing the country a rare top ten finish.
- Anabela “Para te dar abrigo”
- Beatriz Pessoa “Eu te amo”
- Bruno Vasconcelos “Austrália”
- Catarina Miranda “Para sorrir não preciso de nada”
- Janeiro “(sem título)”
- Joana Barra Vaz “Anda estragar-me os planos”
- Joana Espadim “Zero a zero”
- José Cid “O som da guitarra é a alma de um povo”
- JP Simões “Alvoroço”
- Maria Amaral “A mesma canção”
- Peu Madureira “Só por ela”
- Rita Dias “Com gosto amigo”
- Rui David “Sem medo”
Festival da Canção 2018
After rebooting the Festival da Canção concept in 2017 — which translated into the first ever Eurovision victory for the Iberian nation — RTP is keeping the same show structure while adding ten more songs.
Each semi-final will have 13 songs and seven of them will advance to the grand final on 4 March. The voting system follows last year’s pattern: 50% televote and 50% jury in the semis, and 50% televote and 50% regional jury in the grand final.
While the two semi-finals were drawn back in October, the running order itself will be determined by the show’s producers. This Eurovision-style move is new for 2018.
Júlio Isidro — a well-known Portuguese television presenter and entertainer — will be back as the head of the jury, which consists of Ana Bacalhau, Ana Markl, Antonio Avelar Pinho, Carlão, Mario Lopes, Sara Tavares, Tozé Brito — and Eurovision-winning songwriter Luisa Sobral.
While the competition is open to songs in languages other than Portuguese, only two songs are in English. Perhaps inspired by Salvador Sobral’s in, Portugal’s national language is proving popular.