It’s known as the longest national final of the season. Now Lithuania‘s broadcaster LRT has confirmed more details of the epic national final “Eurovizijos” dainu konkurso nacionaline atranka. The show will be kicking off in less than a month, on 6 January 2018.
The broadcaster also introduced the two hosts of the show. Eurovizijos atranka will be presented by comedian Mantas Stonkus and television host Ugne Skonsmanaite. The pair has been friends for a decade, but this is the first time they will have the opportunity to work together.
Ugne revealed this won’t be her first national final experience. “When Jurgis Didziulis and InCulto participated and won [in 2010], we came to support him. After the victory, he invited the entire support team to the stage, so for me, it’s not a novelty.”
Mantas, however, shared some Eurovision ambitions of his own. “It’s strange for me to be the leader of the Eurovision selection, not the participant. Because I always dreamed of participating in Eurovision.” He joked that with his insider position, he might have his way.
Show producer Lauras Luciunas revealed that more than 50 singers have submitted applications to the contest, and over 100 songs have been entered. But he’s not ready to reveal which artists and songs have been selected to participate. Lauras revealed that some songs are still being reworked to make the Eurovision three-minute maximum.
LRT’s chief producer Audrius Girzadas also revealed that the show is attracting entries from younger performers. He explained, “A few years ago, I had noticed that young performers were enthralled by the power of the internet, as if they no longer needed television. But I’m glad that they have finally realised that performing in a studio, to television cameras, is quite different.”
The start date of the show has been confirmed for Saturday 6 January, 2018. However, no further dates have been confirmed, nor has the structure of the show been announced. The notoriously long-running show is known for changing its format from year to year.
In the past two years, Eurovizijos atranka has run for a mammoth ten weeks, with a show screening every Saturday night. If the same schedule is followed for 2018, this will take the show up to 10 March, just days before the overall Eurovision 2018 deadline.
Eurovizijos atranka has been used since 2013. In that time, three of the five selected acts have gone on to make the Eurovision grand final. The best result was in 2016, where Donny Montell placed ninth in Stockholm with “I’ve Been Waiting for This Night”.
What do you think? Who would you like to see compete in Lithuania’s national final? Who should they send to Lisbon? Share your thoughts below!