Romania’s participation at the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 is under serious review, as the president of state broadcaster TVR has revealed that the Romanian national television might have to close next spring on the eve of the contest.
Stelian Tanase, the president of TVR, told Romanian news agency Mediafax on Wednesday that the state broadcaster is unlikely to survive financially and that it might be forced to shut down next spring, for at least a month, and then rebrand itself and reopen. This, of course, would spell disaster for Romania’s chances to take part in the Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna. Not only would Selectia Nationala be threatened, but the very participation will be seriously affected, if not entirely dismissed.
TVR’s financial problems started with the economic crisis and, despite consistent efforts to save the broadcaster, including effectively firing a third of the staff in 2012, the situation at the Romanian broadcaster has been going from bad to worse.
It is worth saying that TVR holds the Eurovision Song Contest in high regard as it’s one of its main audience draws each year. TVR sees Romania’s presence on the European music stage as a top priority.
The country’s best Eurovision finish to date is shared by Luminita Anghel and Sistem in 2005 and Paula Seling and Ovi in 2010, who both finished third with “Let Me Try”and “Playing With Fire” respectively. Despite putting on a good show year after year and always qualifying for the Grand Final, the Eastern European country has so far failed to gather enough points to win. And, considering TVR’s current state, one has to wonder how Romania would even host the contest if it did.
Update: Irina Radu, program director at TVR, announced today that TVR “wants” to maintain Romania’s presence at Eurovision: “The board of diectors already approved this decision earlier this year, so we have time to look for funds and to take care of the international promotion,” she added. This, however, was before Stelian Tanase announced that TVR’s problems are insurmountable and that a shut-down is practically unavoidable. Nonetheless, we appreciate TVR’s willingness to keep Romania on the Eurovision stage and hope for the best for 2015.
Would you miss Romania next year if TVR fails to sort out its financial issues?
Photo: Andres Putting (EBU)