It’s the national final that led to a naked man and a wolf going to Eurovision 2016. Now Belarus have confirmed that plans are underway for the 2017 edition of its national selection competition. And this year, they’re bringing back the jury.
Belarus broadcaster BTRC has confirmed details of the national final they will use to select their act for Kyiv. Applications are now open, with the deadline of 22 November. The competition is open to both Belarusian citizens and foreigners — welcome news for any bedroom composers feeling shut out by Switzerland’s change of rules.
The next stage is the live audition round, due to be held around 30 November. Participants perform their song in front of a panel of experts. The performances are also streamed live online, which traditionally gives fans a taste of the good, bad and just weird entries hoping to represent Belarus at Eurovision.
From there, no more than 15 of the songs will be selected to compete in the grand final. The 2016 final involved 10 acts, while the year before had the full 15.
The grand final will be held “no later than January 25”, with the actual date still to be confirmed.
The jury vote has been brought back to the grand final, returning to the traditional 50/50 jury-televote split. For the national final in 2016, the winner was determined by 100% televote.
Belarus has been a regular competitor at Eurovision since 2004, but has only qualified for the grand final four times. It’s best result was Dmitry Koldun’s 2007 entry “Work Your Magic”. Belarus last qualified for the final in 2014, when Teo’s “Cheesecake” got Copenhagen dancing.
Most recently in Stockholm, despite causing a stir with the hologram of naked Ivan and his wolf, Belarus only managed 12th place in their semi-final. Though “Help You Fly” was still a hit with viewers, placing ninth in the televote split.
Earlier this year, Alyona Lanskaya — who represented Belarus in 2013 with “Solayoh” — revealed that she was ready to represent Belarus again, telling media “I can confidently say that I am preparing my participation for the contest once again. The song has already been made.”
What do you think? Who would you like to see represent Belarus in Kyiv? Have your say below!