Broadcaster TeleRadio Moldova (TRM) has announced that it received 68 songs for O melodie pentru Europa — Moldova’s national selection for Eurovision 2015. For the first time, 19 foreign artists from 10 countries submitted their bids for the selection alongside Moldovan nationals. Yes, Chisinau is hot, y’all.
Despite the international interest, this is a lower turnout than expected. Compared to last year, when 60 songs were submitted, 68 is not exactly the record that the organizers had braced themselves for when they opened the doors to foreign performers.
The biggest number of foreign applicants come from the United Kingdom: seven Brits submitted at least one song. Russia and Spain have two candidates each. Belarus, Canada, Cyprus, Ireland, Norway, Romania and Ukraine have one participant each.
The next stage of the selection is scheduled for today, when the jury will listen to the 68 songs behind closed doors. Sixty songs will be selected for the live audition which will take place on the 17th of January 2015. The live audition had been scheduled for the 19th of December, but because not all foreign artists could come to Chisinau at such short notice, TRM has decided to re-schedule the live audition for one month from today.
Leonid Melnic, member of the O melodie pentru Europa organizing committee, said that the contest reflects broader shifts in Moldova’s international relations: “The doors have been opened to the foreign songwriters and singers as a thank you for the fact that Europe opened its doors to Moldovans, who can now travel without a visa.”
Speaking of Moldovan migrants, veteran Sasha Bognibov has announced that he submitted not one, but two songs this year. Apart from “Wounded Swan”, he also sent the Romanian language ballad “Emigrantului” (To the Emigrant). The lyrics, penned by Sasha’s mother, speak of the plague of the immigrant, who has to live far away from family and fatherland.
Following the live auditions, 24 songs will advance to the semi-finals on 24 and 26 February and 16 songs will battle it out in the final on 28 February, when the winner will be selected by the equal combination of jury votes and a public televote.