Sweden’s Melodifestivalen may be the most spectacular of all national finals, but if last year is anything to go by, its popularity is on the wane. The 2014 contest attracted the lowest viewing figures since 1999, with a full 800,000 less couch potatoes tuning in for the Grand Final compared to prior years.
With stats like that it’s hard to just sit around and do nothing, and luckily someone in the SVT management team has lit a firecracker under Christer Bjorkman & co’s collective ass.
Aftonbladet has revealed a couple of key upcoming changes in this season’s national selection contest, sourced from “people with good insight”, aimed at generating more drama and raising viewer numbers.
Firstly, while the number of shows – four semis, the Second Chance, and Final – will stay the same, only seven entries will compete in each Semi instead of the traditional eight. With a number of atrocious numbers in recent years, maybe this ain’t exactly the worst thing.
Second, the competition built on the beauty of classic schlager is rumoured to be embracing modern technology like no other. SVT is said to be introducing a new Melodifestivalen app that will act like a voting button during the Semis. “The button … can be pressed during a performance someone likes and the more one presses it, the more votes it will generate for the entry. So it translates into votes. This app would also replace SMS votes, but that’s not 100% confirmed yet,” an insider revealed.
What do y’all think, though? Is Melodifestivalen in need of a makeover? Can technology and a reduced number of divas on stage save it? Can the sad be undone?
Source & Photocredit: Aftonbladet