Irish broadcaster TG4 has announced details of its Junior Eurovision national selection show. The show will be presented by Voice of Ireland host Eoghan McDermott and will star 2006 Irish representative Brian Kennedy as well as 1993 winner Niamh Kavanagh.
The former Eurovision singers will make up the judging panel who will select the act to make Ireland’s debut at JESC in November. They’ll be joined by third panelist – singer Stiofán Ó Fearail.
TG4 are taking the selection process seriously. After launching an open competition earlier this year, they then whittled down the entrants to 50, who performed in front of a panel of experts in July. From there 30 acts will go on to the national selection TV show.
The five prerecorded shows will be filmed in Dublin this month and will screen from 11 October, weekly on Sundays. In each episode the singers will perform their song, with panel choosing the best to progress to the final. And of course, in the final Ireland’s very first JESC entry will be chosen.
The show’s host Eoghan McDermott is best known in Ireland as a radio DJ and for being one of the presenters of The Voice of Ireland. He is also a fluent speaker of Irish – an essential skill as TG4 is an Irish-language broadcaster and Ireland’s JESC entry will be in Irish.
He excitedly shared news of his new role with his Twitter followers today:
Ah caint faoin teanga – delighted to be hosting Ireland’s first ever Junior Eurovision le haghaidh @TG4TV ah tosnú go luath. Woohoo!
— Eoghan McDermott (@eoghanmcdermo) September 1, 2015
His Twitter account also revealed that he’s a bit of a Eurovision fan. He made this emotional tweet after Molly Sterling didn’t make the final in Vienna:
That’s the spirit! And it seems that Eoghan has his favourites. Any chance of getting “My Lovely Horse” translated into Irish?
Before Eurovision qualifier kicks off, can we all openly acknowledge the greatest Eurovision song that ever was?… pic.twitter.com/yXgoYOjTF5
— Eoghan McDermott (@eoghanmcdermo) May 8, 2014
What do you think of Ireland’s plans for its Junior Eurovision debut? Leave your comments below!