Israel will compete in the second-semi final on 12 May in order to avoid a clash with Israel’s Memorial Day on 10 May, reports newspaper Israel HaYom. Since July there has been speculation around Israel’s participation in Eurovision 2016 due to a potential clash with the semi-finals and the very important national holiday, but it seems a solution has been found.

Israel HaYom reports that the EBU has agreed to the Israel Broadcasting Authority’s (IBA) request that Israel participate in the second semi-final as the Yom Hazikaron holiday will be observed on the 10th.

Memorial Day is a serious observation for Israel and in the past the country has withdrawn from Eurovision when the holiday has clashed with the competition. In 1980, despite winning the previous year, Israel declined to participate as Memorial Day commemorations started the day after the final, and in 1984 they also withdrew from the competition after a similar clash of dates.

Memorial Day 2016 starts at sunset on May 10 and ends at sunset on May 11 – directly clashing with the first semi-final on the evening of May 10. But the observations will be well over by the time the second semi-final starts on the 12th.

The golden formula

Israel will again use television series HaKokhav HaBa (The next star) to choose its singer for 2016. The 15-episode talent show will be used to select the singer, with the song chosen by internal selection.

This is the same method used this year, with Nadav Guedj’s “Golden Boy” finally breaking Israel’s four years of non-qualification and giving the country its first top 10 finish since 2008.

Follow all of our Israel Eurovision news here

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[…] to sit this year out. The semi-final order hasn’t been announced yet, although Israel will compete in the second semi-final because the first occurs on the evening of national holiday Yom […]

Erin
Guest
Erin

@Mei – usually when you say your wish out loud, it won’t come true…
Anyway, I get why ‘The Next Star’ formula will be applied again in 2016, but nothing could be worse than choosing a ‘star’ without a song and then ‘trusting’ the production company to choose anyone but its own contracted composers/songwriters…

Max
Guest
Max

Lol Mei

Hopefully he has GonawAY never to be heard from aGAYn.

Seriously that dude annoys me so much!

Mei International
Guest
Mei International

Thanks Erin…

Now where is Mario to ruin this convo

Eurovision Song Contest 2016 winner Greece
Guest

Eurovision 2010-2015 my top 10
1 Greece
2 Switzerland
3 Cyprus
4 Sweden
5 Iceland
6 Albania
7 Turkey
8 Norway
9 Denmark
10 Finland

Erin
Guest
Erin

Just to pick up om Mei International’s point, Memorial day takes place one week after Holocaust Remembrance day. Those national days of observance are not religious holidays: The first one was enacted into law in 1963 and the second one 10 years earlier. Because of the nature of the Hebrew calendar, their annual Gregorian date could fall as early as mid-April until the end of May. This may coincide with the Eurovision Semi-Final and Final week every once in a while and sometimes for even two years in a row. In the case of a religious holiday like Shavuot (equivalent… Read more »

Ivan
Guest
Ivan

Why don’t the EBU look statistically in the last 5 years which semifinal each country was allocated in. For example: Norway 2015 – 2SF; 2014 – 2SF; 2013 – 2SF; 2012 – 2SF; 2011 – 1SF Montenegro 2015 – 2SF; 2014 – 1SF; 2013 – 1SF; 2012 – 1SF; 2011 – does not take part Armenia 2015 – 1SF; 2014 – 1SF; 2013 – 2SF; 2012 – does not take part; 2011 – 1SF Portugal 2015 – 2SF; 2014 – 1SF; 2013 – does not take part; 2012 – 2SF; 2011 – 1SF San Marino 2015 – 2SF; 2014 –… Read more »

Mei International
Guest
Mei International

Our Memorial Day is the day before our Independence day which usually falls around May 14 (it goes by the Hebrew, Biblical date)…plus or minus a week…which is also conveniently right around ESC events

Maya G
Guest
Maya G

@Max we do have a lot of holidays, hehe. But the problem is where the memorial day is concerned (The 2015 final was on Shavuot holiday and we still participated), and lately it seems that almost every year one of the semifinals clashes with it. It’s like if one of the semis would be on May 4th a lot of times and then The Netherlands would always ask to be in the other semi because it clashes with Dodenherdenking.

Maya G
Guest
Maya G

@Gint Lebanon and all other Arab countries are free to join, no one is stopping them, including Israel. If a country stays out because it refuses to acknowledge the existence of another country – it’s really their problem, isn’t it?
FYI Morocco and Jordan acknowledge Israel and have economic and diplomatic ties with it (as does Egypt), so they most likely wouldn’t participate even if Israel withdrew.

Zac
Guest
Zac

@Robyn

And they’ll probably be allocated seperate semifinals again

Oostenrijk
Guest
Oostenrijk

And Germany will once again ask to broadcast and vote Semi 2, because they expect higher market share on Thursday than on Tuesday….. those spoiled brats!

Mei International
Guest
Mei International

@Gints…next time you use Google Translate, double check to make sure what you post is legible….

You can’t speculate whether other countries would or would not participate, either.

Robyn Gallagher
Guest
Robyn Gallagher

Gints: Israel isn’t the only country to have had their semi-final chosen in advance. In 2013 Denmark and Norway were pre-allocated separate semi-finals, and in 2014 Norway and Sweden had the same done to ensure these fans from the host’s neighbouring countries would be evenly spread out between semis.

And, realistically, the first semi-final is the better option as it gives qualifying countries a couple of days off before the grand final. Israel haven’t given themselves an advantage.

Max
Guest
Max

I say this as a vocal Friend Of Israel, and one of their biggest supporters,

But DAMN they sure have a lot of holidays. Like every year they seem to only be able to do 1 semi because the other clashes with some holiday/memorial/event thing.

Jo Mercado
Guest
Jo Mercado

@Gints

The semi-final lottery is done AFTER all countries confirm their participation, which is end of October. Israel made a request prior to the lottery/deadline of confirmation. If they had requested for a special treatment AFTER the lottery, that’s where you can say it’s unfair.

Gints
Guest
Gints

You know what? It is not fair that due to holidays EBU Israel placed second semi-final, only to Israel to participate in the contest. Semi-final lottery to be fair, together with all countries, no matter what the celebration etc…
For if the festival falls on one of the semi-finals, then Israel need withdraws from Eurovision. At least Lebanon, Morocco, Jordan and other Arab countries will be able to participate, but it looks like the IBU will do anything to take part in Israel !!! : @: @

Ricky
Guest

To be fair the EBU allowed the same to happen in 2011 – it’s not a far stretch at all to believe this will be allowed again to allow Israel to compete in the 2016 contest 🙂