Danish broadcaster DR is allowing Anja Nissen‘s song “Never Alone” to remain in Dansk Melodi Grand Prix, after earlier suggestions that it may be ineligible due to a previous live performance by co-writer Emmelie De Forest. DR consulted with the European Broadcasting Union, who confirmed that there would be no problem with the song competing at Eurovision if it were to win the Danish national final.

This news will come as a huge relief for fans. Emerging as an early favourite, “Never Alone” — performed by Anja Nissen and co-written by Eurovision 2013 winner Emmelie De Forest — faced some scrutiny after it was realised that Emmelie had performed “Never Alone” in live shows dating back to 2014. However Emmelie had never physically recorded it or released it as a single herself.

According to DR’s entertainment manager Jan Lagermand Lundme, the broadcaster had always known that “Never Alone” had previously been performed by Emmelie De Forest, but they never considered it an issue until the media raised the issue. He also added that, “Because there are just 2000 people who have heard it, I do not think that it distorts the competition, and I must again say that just because a song has been sung and played before, it does not automatically mean that it is disqualified according to the rules.”

The broadcaster wasn’t taking any chances, and consulted with the EBU to make sure that if “Never Alone” wins DMGP, it would also be accepted as an entry for Stockholm. The EBU gave the go-ahead, so The Voice Australia winner will be free to perform her entry at DMGP.

Rules are rules

The rules for Dansk Melodi Grand Prix, which you can read below, explicitly forbid public performances ahead of the song submission. But there is wiggle room. The rules state that the songs should “generally not” have been performed, but suggests it’s OK if DR consents. That’s sufficiently loose for officials to do what they want.

The compositions chosen for the competition (music, text, demo recording) with a maximum duration of 3 minutes should generally not in any way have been performed in public, officially published on any media, or sold without explicit consent from DR. This includes but is not limited to radio, TV, the Internet (eg. YouTube etc.). DR must be informed immediately if the composition has been published earlier on eg. SoundCloud and it is up to DR to decide if the composition can join the competition.

This situation has a precedent in 2013, when it was discovered that Anouk had played a portion of her song “Birds” on a Dutch radio station, 10 months before the deadline. However, the Eurovision rules are similar to DR’s, requiring the broadcaster refer the situation to the EBU who will make a decision. In Anouk’s case, her song was approved for Malmö.

Poll results: What should DR do with Anja Nissen?

We asked you what DR should do with Anja. The majority said that “Never Alone” should be disqualified and Anja given a new song, but almost a third thought both Anja and the song should be allowed to stay.

  1. Disqualify her song, but let her perform another one 54.17% (520 votes)
  2. Do nothing — the song should stay and so should she 31.98% (307 votes)
  3. Disqualify her and her song 13.85% (133 votes)

Anja Nissen is currently placed a close second in our Dansk Melodi Grand Prix 2016 poll – which is still open for you to vote!

What do you think? Is DR right to let “Never Alone” stay in the competition? Has your opinion of the song changed? Let us know in the comments below!

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Mitchelvaneijk
Guest

@MTD

Don’t say things that are not treu dude

Robyn Gallagher
Editor

The most hilarious thing about this is the shade on Emmelie de Forest’s music career: she’s not popular enough to command an audience big enough to justify disqualifying the song.

Nana1610
Guest
Nana1610

Maybe it’s not 100% fair but there were countries that competed (and even won) with songs that obviously were plagiarism! Compared to that this is nothing to complain about 😉

mawnck
Guest
mawnck

“Song will be disqualified bu EBU reference group” It was the Reference Group that gave it the go-ahead. “unless you’re saying Emmelie’s live shows have been really unpopular” I think that’s exactly what they’re saying. I think at this point there’s no sense in even complaining about the rules anymore. They aren’t rules. They’re “suggestions”, subject to the whims of the contest organizers. Their defense is “the Reference Group said it was OK”, but it’s now obvious that the Reference Group will happily rubber stamp absolutely anything, as long as it involves one of the “core” Western European countries. I’m… Read more »

europa
Guest
europa

if it were some nobody, i’d buy the whole ‘only 2000 people heard it’ but Emmelie de Forest is a former winner, she performed it in live shows after that time, so unless you’re saying Emmelie’s live shows have been really unpopular, I’d think a fair few people had heard it before.

Don’t the EBU have enough quarrels about the rules without things like this.

PP
Guest
PP

Now we can took some song form maybe 1980 ties for Eurovision 2016, 2017 who nevere publich on track, but sing in some tv show and EBU don t disqualificated that song.
But If you publish new song in 31.avgust 2015 , you wili be disqualificated.

PP
Guest
PP

For me better and stronger song have Simone. With Simone , Denmark can go to final and in final to be in TOP 10.

PP
Guest
PP

AberSam Read this article http://www.eurovision.tv/page/news?id=loving_belarus_with_a_patriotic_song In one part of article wrote this One of those songs – I Love Belarus written by Evgeny Oleinik and Svetlana Geraskova – will be performed by Anastasiya Vinnikova at Eurovision 2011 in Düsseldorf under the flag of Belarus. Initially, she had been chosen to represent her country with a different song, called Born in Byelorussia, the lyrics of which were later changed to I Am Belarusian. However, this song broke the rules of the 2011 Eurovision Song Contest for being released prior to September 1st, 2010. Rules of Eurovision 2016 on same cite wrote… Read more »

AberSam
Guest
AberSam

Denmark helped change the rules back in 2012 when Valen:tine was disqualified for having a demo released, from then on Denmark relaxed the rules and probable highly encouraged the EBU to do the same. Also the Disqualification of the Belarussian entry in 2011 may have been down to the broadcasters choice, not the EBU.

PP
Guest
PP

Song will be disqualified bu EBU reference group is countries in not from west and nordic countries. Nordic loby in EBU reference group is so strong in last decade ,especiala when Jon Ola took place instead Svante.
Song perromed in live show in 2014 and not break rule of EBU. Very funny. Do you remeber Belarus 2011.

Olly the Swede
Guest
Olly the Swede

I’m quite glad they kept the song in DMGP, although I believe they technically should have disqualified the song itself. I still believe that Anja’s song Never Alone will pull a so-called “Ace Wilder” or “Suitcase” and end up second, purely because 70% of all fan-favs here tend to end up 2nd or 3rd in the selection process. I’m very certain that Simone will win; better song, more radio-friendly and better chance of another Top 5 placing. 🙂 GO SIMONE!

DiamonDollar97xx
Guest
DiamonDollar97xx

Someone just tried to make a bad advert to Anja…. Well done. -_-

NickC
Guest
NickC

It would be outrageous if she actually wins.

MTD
Guest
MTD

Oh, c’mon Sweden won with a stolen song, this is nothing. Hahahah

esc1234
Guest
esc1234

This is a scandal. Rules are RULES and everyone must follow them. Over the years songs have been disqualified because they have been perfomed ONCE. Now ebu says ok to a song that has been perfomed PUBLICLY before september? well ok whoever has the money has the power….

Polaca
Guest
Polaca

I knew it! There is something about this song that the first time I heard it I knew it was this year’s winner! From Sweden to Denmark yet again!

Hippo
Guest
Hippo

If it isn’t against the rules then fine, but the rules need to be ammended for other years. It shouldn’t matter whether it was released or not, you shouldn’t be allowed to enter a two year old song that’s been performed in public before.