Swiss broadcaster SRF has released details of the national selection process for Eurovision 2017, and with it comes some big changes that the broadcaster is no doubt hoping will see Switzerland end its disappointing results of recent years. The regional quotas are gone, a Swiss connection is required for entry, and the winner will be decided by televote alone.

Gone are the three separate submission processes managed by the regional broadcasters SRF, RTS, RSI and RTR. Instead the broadcasters will join forces and run the submission process together.

The entries will be rated by a panel of experts from across Switzerland, with the top 20 rated entries progressing to the next stage. This also means that regional quotas are gone – it will just be the top 20 songs, regardless of which part of Switzerland the artist comes from.

No more smoking bras?
No more smoking bras?

This will be the end of SRF’s highly entertaining online open submission process, where artists from around the world entered songs of wildly varying quality, hoping to make the shortlist.

The new rules now require that at least one person directly involved with the entry — the performer, composer or lyricist — must hold a Swiss passport or be resident in Switzerland. Swiss artists will still be able to team up with others from abroad, but it will stop random foreign artists sending in their amateur efforts.

The traditional live check stage remains the same, where the artists’ live performance skills are assessed. The jury will then select around eight acts which will progress to the live final, due to be held on 5 February 2017.

Can Switzerland make it to the final again?
Can Switzerland make it to the final again?

There’s no mention of the national final cover version component, which sometimes led acts to win based on a song they couldn’t perform at Eurovision. Switzerland is also ditching the jury vote for the national final. The ultimate winner will be decided solely by televote.

The rules suggest that Switzerland has a specific type of act in mind, saying that they are “looking for a strong song which meets international standards, performed with a powerful, note-perfect voice.” And as always, the broadcaster reserves the right to revamp the winning track, even after the national final.

Interested artists have over three months to perfect their song. The entry period opens on 26 September 2016 and closes on 24 October.

What do you think? Can Switzerland reverse its run of bad fortune at Eurovision? Are the changes an improvement? Share your thoughts below.

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Denis
Denis
4 years ago

I think at least one entry could/should be in Romansh. Would make the language visible in Switzerland, even in Switzerland it’s disappearing. Plus it’s nice.

MK
MK
4 years ago

My thoughts on Switzerland’s most recent attempts: 2016: The song had potential but the performance in Stockholm was just too hilarious. A more naive approach (just like in the NF but with better vocals) might have worked better. 2015: Very well composed song, very Eurovision. The performance was too stiff and too distant. She didn’t look like she actually felt the song. 2014: Not my personal taste because I’m not too fond on songs that are so “quirky”. But I understand how it did so well. 2013: Very simple, but catchy melody. The entry as a whole felt a little… Read more »

Nikos
Nikos
4 years ago

I think this is a good idea. I think eliminating the quotas will help raise the talent level. (lol, imagine seeing all 20 entries next year in Romansh!)

Seriously though I do like that so many countries have started taking the contest more seriously so hopefully the Swiss selection is strong next year!

MK
MK
4 years ago

At first, I misread “Switzerland: Big chances for Eurovision 2017 national selection”. Of course, I quickly realised that this couldn’t be right.

EscAddict
EscAddict
4 years ago

Switzerland definitely need to change the selection process. Recent songs have been mediocre and mediocre songs will never do well.

Alex
Alex
4 years ago

Yeah, as much as I loved the funny online selection process, this format had to end. On average, most of the songs which made it to the final round were completely unremarkable, and honestly the format of selection was even worse than Lithuania’s.

An expansion to eight acts in the national final would be a good idea too. And please, please, please remove the cover song component!!!

Glorious
Glorious
4 years ago

@oooops

Maybe you are correct but I’m still not convinced if it could have qualified.

mocosuburbian
mocosuburbian
4 years ago

I thought the regional quotas were really interesting but whatever

Denis
Denis
4 years ago

Both 2015 and 2016 was similar for Switzerland. Both years were that kind of songs you forget were competing. Not bad but but not interesting enough to get any votes.
Hopefully this will be the beginning of something good.

Marcus (Day One)
Marcus (Day One)
4 years ago

Ok so I might get hate for saying this but Melanie and Rykka both sucked and came last because both their songs were just bad. They had no real melody and no memorable hook and it was obvious from the very start that both of them were going to come last in their semi’s. Rykka is supposed to be represented by some kind of fashion company but she looked like a homeless person when performing at Eurovision (Harsh but true). Anyway this is a good move forward for Switzerland as they are just bad at Eurovision. I liked hunter of… Read more »

Goprake
Goprake
4 years ago

@eschetalian Is it so hard to get Swiss nationalty so you can get the passport?

eschetalian
eschetalian
4 years ago

@thomasfan22 Germany now allows foreign artist to compete?

Marco
Marco
4 years ago

I am so happy with this! The new head of delegation really seems to have implemented some good ideas. Now let’s hope for some decent entries 🙂

oooops
oooops
4 years ago

Glorious, I think “I’m not lost” could have qualified, but Tom didn’t have as good charisma as Laura, so with a better artist it could have worked

Glorious
Glorious
4 years ago

@nickc

And I agree with you on Tom, if Belgium had sent him they wouldn’t have qualified. “What’s The Pressure?” stood out, “I’m Not Lost” was nothing special or different.

Glorious
Glorious
4 years ago

they made it*

Glorious
Glorious
4 years ago

@nickc

I loved “Hunter Of Stars” from the very beginning and I thought I was the only one! My favorite song from 2014 along with “Rise Like A Phoenix” and “Same Heart”. Switzerland was actually considered the least likely country to qualify from Semi-Final 2 in 2014 but I’m so happy the made it and did well.

@Azaad

They actually came dead last in Semi-Final 2 both last year and this year 🙁
#CriminallyUnderrated

thomasfan22
thomasfan22
4 years ago

@eschetalian You can still compete for Germany. They now allow singers from around the globe.

oooops
oooops
4 years ago

Select Platzhrisch

eschetalian
eschetalian
4 years ago

This is really sad for me. I’m from the Philippines and I really want to compete for Switzerland in 2019 or 2020 but the rules have now change and it really just destroyed my Eurovision dream, it’s just really devastating knowing I can’t compete without a Swiss passport or have lived in Switzerland for a number of years. I’m guess I’m just gonna hope and pray Moldova would revise their rule and allow foreign solo artist to compete but Switzerland is still really my dream. But if it’s really for the best I guess I’m just going to sit by… Read more »

Azaad
Azaad
4 years ago

sounds like a good idea. may not qualify but at least they won’t come dead last or next to dead last like they did these last 2 years.

cheesecake
cheesecake
4 years ago

Three changes you did not mention:
The final will be held on a Sunday (instead of a Saturday). It will be broadcast on SRF zwei instead of SRF 1. The Bodensee-Arena in Kreuzlingen won’t be the venue for the final anymore, SRF says it will be held in Zurich.
Also interesting.

cheesecake
cheesecake
4 years ago

Thank god! It was high time.
All in all this sounds good (even better if they also ditch the covers at NF), BUT I think that they shouldn’t open the submission window before November/December a.k.a. also hold the NF later (end of Feb, early Mar).
So glad we’ll get rid of this ridiculous online platform. I really hope this will encourage some TALENTED and PROFESSIONAL artists to submit a song.

Ben Rafter
Ben Rafter
4 years ago

Poor Rykka. She had a great song but the costume was bad and the hair a joke – what were her team thinking? She got 3 points on the televote… all from Albania, who not only get small viewing figures but also just voted for their friends and families that live in Switzerland, literally.

beccaboo1212
4 years ago

I still feel sorry for Rykka. 🙁

nickc
nickc
4 years ago

I just realized how good Sebalter was, especially compared to all other Swiss entries of the last decade. Fans did not even realize (except me, haha) Hunter of Stars was, because it had an authentic sound. I feel like nowadays the majority of Esc fans are obsessed with “modern” sounds, so many national finals end up with “modern” but weak entries like Melanie rene or rykka, and good songs with “dated” sounds (whatever that means) are overlooked. Both Melanie rene, and sinplus were rated highly by fans and oddsmakers, and they both failed to make the cut- and instead it… Read more »

Mark
Mark
4 years ago

It’s about time Switzerland revamped their selection process. I don’t know if it will improve their chances. All anyone wants is a good contest and I hope they achieve that.

Glorious
Glorious
4 years ago

I’m looking forward to seeing them in the final again, I love all of their entries since 2014 🙂