After weeks of speculation, SVT have confirmed – Gina Dirawi will present Melodifestivalen, joined by a series of co-hosts for each show. And the big surprise – rumoured Eurovision 2016 host Petra Mede is one of Gina’s co-hosts.
On the live webcast, Melfest boss Christer Björkman presented Gina and her seven co-hosts:
Semi-final 1: Gothenburg – Gina Dirawi and Petra Mede
Semi-final 2: Malmö – Gina Dirawi and Charlotte Perrelli
Semi-final 3: Norrköping – Gina Dirawi and Henrik Schyffert
Semi final 4: Gävle – Gina Dirawi and Sarah Dawn Finer
Andra Chansen: Halmstad – Gina Dirawi, Peter Jöback and Ola Salo
Final: Stockholm – Gina Dirawi and William Spetz
Gina Dirawi – TV host and actress Gina co-hosted Melodifestivalen in 2012 with Helena Bergström and Sarah Dawn Finer, and co-hosted in 2013 with Danny Saucedo.
Petra Mede – Petra presented Eurovision 2013, and co-hosted Eurovision’s Greatest Hits along with Graham Norton. Petra also hosted Melfest 2009.
Charlotte Perrelli – Charlotte is best known for winning Eurovision 1999 with “Take Me To Your Heaven”. She won Melfest again in 2008 and participated in 2012. Charlotte has also co-hosted Melodifestivalen, presenting semi-final one in 2003, and co-hosting the 2004 series along with Peter Settman and Ola Lindholm.
Henrik Schyffert: Comedian and TV host Henrik previously presented semi-final two of Melfest 2005, and also performed as part of the internal act for the final.
Sarah Dawn Finer: SDF is a singer, songwriter, actor and TV host. She participated in Melfest 2007 and 2009, and then came back to host in 2012 along with Helena Bergström and Gina Dirawi. She has promised that her close personal friend Lynda Woodruff will make an appearance.
Ola Salo: As the lead singer of glam rock band The Ark, Ola Salo represented Sweden at ESC 2007.
Peter Jöback: Singer and actor Peter competed in Mello way back in 1990 where he placed ninth, then again in 2010 where he reached the final.
William Spetz: Comedian and actor William Spetz made his name through YouTube videos, but has since branched out into television. At 19, he’s the youngest Melfest host, and the only one of this year’s line-up to not have previous Melfest experience.
What about Petra and Eurovision?
Fans were surprised to see Petra Mede introduced as Gina’s co-host for the Gothenburg show. After all, Petra has been strongly rumoured to be one of SVT’s picks to host Eurovision along with Måns Zelmerlöw. Does her role in Melfest mean that Petra is out of the running for ESC? Or is it just an acknowledgement of how amazing Petra is?