It’s the new national final that everyone is talking about. And while the two semi-finals of Destination Eurovision have been filmed this week, fans are patiently waiting for the first of these to be aired on Saturday 13th January.

But while we wait, new details have emerged on what the show will entail. French newspaper  20 minutes attended the recording of the first semi-final on 8 January, and was permitted by the French delegation to publish an overview of what went down . So what juicy bits did we learn?

The semi-final is set to start with a rendition of “Waterloo” by the three members of the national jury –  Amir , Isabelle Boulay and Christophe Willem  – along with Garou , the show’s host. As the newspaper notes, it may be best for the superstitious among you to forget that “Waterloo” refers to the dramatic defeat of the French army (let’s hope their Eurovision 2018 candidate does not suffer a similar fate).

After a tribute to the recently deceased French-singer, and winner of Eurovision 1965 for Luxembourg, France Gall , the competition gets underway.

However, it won’t be a simple case of the eight artists performing their national selection song, with each set to start by singing a verse and chorus of a cover of their choice. The aim is to allow each contestant the chance to discuss their musical influences and style. Masoé starts proceedings off with a rendition of “Pas là” by Vianney, while Noée covers Michel Berger’s  “Le Paradis Blanc” and Pheno Men opt for “ABC” by the Jackson Five.

In addition, 20 minutes notes the judging style of the three French jury members. Isabelle comes off as kind, Amir “masters euphemisms and innuendos”, while Christophe is seen as the most harsh, but still fair. An unnamed contestant, who apparently did not receive 100% positive comments from the jury, says after their judging that: “They are objective and they are right. I still have work to do.”

Each member of the French and international jury, which for the semi-finals comprises of Sweden’s Christopher Bjorkman and the heads of delegation from Italy and Belarus — Nicola Caligliore and Olga Salmakhe — awards 12, 10, 8, 6, 4 and 2 points to their favourite six songs of the evening. The scores are added up and then we will finally know who will qualify for the final on 27th January.

The view of the journalists backstage is apparently very diverse, with no one having the same top four. It’s looking like it could be a nail-biter!

Semi-Final Allocation Revealed

The eight artists to compete in the first semi-final this Saturday have also been revealed. The French delegation sent out the following tweet after the recording on Monday, with a picture of the eight acts involved.

The photo shows Lisandro CuxiMalo’NoéeElhaMasoéEmmy LyiannaLoukaEnea, and Pheno Men.

By process of elimination this leaves Madame MonsieurJane ConstanceMax Cinnamon, Igit, June The Girl, Sarah CaillibotNassiSweem and Lucie Vagenheim to battle it out in the second semi-final on 20th January.

Extended clips of the songs of each contestant in semi-final one are also currently being released by the French delegation on Instagram. The first two, for Pheno Men and Louka, are included in the article above.

There’s also still time to vote in our polls of who your favourites are based on the initial clips: 1st set of 9; 2nd set of 9.

How To Watch The Show

For those fans wishing to watch the show there are several options available. Firstly, a worldwide Facebook Live stream will be put up on the Eurovision France Facebook page, which you can find here.

But additionally, the show is set to air on TV5Monde, a global television network that broadcasts several channels of French language programming. This means anyone with Sky or Virgin Media will be able to watch the show from the comfort of their own TV, and avoid any buffering problems the rest of us may face with the live stream.

In the UK TV5Monde is found on Sky channel 796 and Virgin Media channel 825, but make sure to double check if it is included in your specific package, and with your local version in other countries.

Are you excited for Eurovision to begin? Do you think every act is good? And who are you routing for? Let us know all in the comments below!

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AngieP
Guest
AngieP

I really like how the show will unfold. I love the concept of having a cover first. We get to know the artists better. Then we’ll listen to the actual songs.

As for the semis, with many really good songs, it will be a bloodbath.
1st semi: I’m routing for Masoe and Emmy.
2nd semi: I’m routing for June the girl, Sweem and Nassi.

Also, I’m so excited TV5 Monde will broadcast the shows!
Looking forward to tomorrow for the first round.

PP
Guest
PP

Only 4 singer can give France TOP 10 result in final. Igit, Nassi, lissandro, Louka. Igit from 6 to 10 place (he wili be in TOP 4 with juries , televote is misterious ,i predict simmilar like France 2009 Patrica Kass, top 5 with juries and in out of TOP 15 with televote, combined result 8 place). Nassi (song for me sound like male version of France song from 2017) my prediciton from 10 to 12 place in final. Lissandro my predicition if he go to Eurovision place from 8 to 12 place (strong chance to be in TOP 5… Read more »

Non Merci
Guest
Non Merci

Just wait to see Madame Monsieur.
Definitely a contender for the crown if they manage to go to Lisbon.

Toinousse
Guest
Toinousse

I really agree with your Igit-Patricia comparison

josh
Guest
josh

Did June the Girl qualify?

Non Merci
Guest
Non Merci

No. She came second to last.

Oscar Alfred
Guest
Oscar Alfred

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Azotman
Guest
Azotman

Bonsoir Lisboa,
J’ai hâte d’entendre les chansons en entier. Voici mes préférés.
Nassi – Rêve de gamin———————7 points
Emmy Lyianna – OK ou KO ————– 8 points
Madame Monsieur – Mercy ————-10 points

Louka – Mamma Mia———————-12 points !!!
J’ai hâte d’entendre les chansons en entier…
Bisous

Norway
Guest
Norway

Did Lucie Vagenheim get to the final?
Love her song

Non Merci
Guest
Non Merci

No she came last with nul point

L'oiseau
Guest
L'oiseau

Looking very much forward to see this (much more than Melfest…) and I do have to bite my own tongue (or my fingers in this case) because I was very sceptical when the pre-selection was announced. But many of the acts and songs seem amazing and I am sure we are in for a great show. But I have to say, this cover thing for each constant, is this really necessary?…

Christopher Grevener
Guest
Christopher Grevener

My top 3 in the whole competition are:

Nassi, Emmy Liyana and Lisandro Cuxi ?

kalo mira
Guest
kalo mira

There is no comment section with so many people speaking in their native language. You really love your mother language.

ArmRus
Guest
ArmRus

A small part of Mamma Mia’s start somehow reminds me Bonbon.
Also can anyone explain they sang only covers or both their songs and covers?

Toinousse
Guest
Toinousse

Both and they were judged only on their songs

ArmRus
Guest
ArmRus

Oh well, that’s all right then
Thanks.

ArmRus
Guest
ArmRus

Oh well, that’s all right then.
Thanks

ArmRus
Guest
ArmRus

Thanks for answering.

ArmRus
Guest
ArmRus

That’s all right then, thanks.

ArmRus
Guest
ArmRus

It’s all right then, thanks.

ArmRus
Guest
ArmRus

It’s all right then. Thanks

silvia
Guest
silvia

All esc fans need to get over Waterloo. Is the biggest cliche now, enough already.

silvia
Guest
silvia

btw, covers are a bad idea when they already have their songs. Covers are even bad idea than in Unser Lied last year, because then, at least, they didn’t have their own song yet, but when you have a song to compete with, to be told that first a cover matters, is horrrrrrrrilbe. Is A SONG COMPETITION, you just cant ignore the fact that the singer have a song, and to tell him/her that….first the cover. No.

Guiguiid
Guest
Guiguiid

The big difference with Unser Lied is that the singer’s are singing a cover AND their eurovision song right after. (There is no elimination based only on the cover)
The short cover (approximately 1,5 minut) is just here to allow juries to discover the musical universe of the artist. This will allows them to send not only a song, but also a musical personality that, according to them, fit with eurovision.

Pavlovien
Guest
Pavlovien

Demi 1 Lisandro Malo Emy Lyana et loukas
Demi 2 Mme Mr Max Cinnamon Igit et Nassi
Sur ce bisous les loulous !!! ???

Bella
Guest
Bella

Je ne sais pas ce qui me fait le plus marrer. Le fait que t’aies que ça à foutre à 6h du matin? Ou le fait que t’aies l’air de trouver ça cool de jouer les connards sur un forum anonyme? 😀

Cela dit, les noms circulent déjà sur le web depuis longtemps, on n’avait pas besoin de toi pour être spoilés.

Ryan
Guest
Ryan

I found no Destination Eurovision on TV5Monde Asie schedule 🙁

Non Merci
Guest
Non Merci

Arrête de chialer. Personne b’a balancé de résultat là. Mais je peux le faire si tu insistes

Racal
Guest
Racal

I’m sure the show will be a good watch, but why are they singing cover songs instead of their Eurovision songs? These artists are all good and I’m sure they’ll do great covers, but what matters in Eurovision is their entry.

A great singer with a poor song won’t do well at Eurovision, and France has suffered a lot from that. Angunn, Lisa Angell, Amandine Bourgeois, Sébastien Tellier are all great… but their Eurovision songs sucked big time.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

Perhaps the broadcaster just overbooked the time in scheduling, and needed to provide “filler music”?
Mundane I know, but it happens all the time.

mad-professor
Guest
mad-professor

It’s listed as being 2 hours on TV5MONDE, so that’s probably what has happened. Hopefully it doesn’t turn into Germany 2017 all over again with an extremely padded out show.

Rile
Guest
Rile

they will first sing a verse and chorus of a cover and then they will sing their own songs…

Guiguiid
Guest
Guiguiid

The contestants are singing twice : a short cover of a song they choose to start, and then their song for Eurovision.

Toinouss
Guest
Toinouss

Yes and they are not judged based on their cover. I’ve been there i can tell.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

Singing “Waterloo” at the start of the French shows… is this an example of “l’humour noir”?
Maybe they should sing “Hastings” instead. (The British lost that one.)
Or better yet: “1066.” :p

Azotman
Guest
Azotman

Le monde est décadent, honte à Amir, Christophe Willem, Garou et Isabelle Boulay pour la chanson d’intro. On est en France, on n’a pas le droit de chanter cette chanson surtout si on est Français. Les Québécois ne connaissent peut-être pas l’histoire de France du XIXe siècle la signification de cette chanson… Amir a grandi en Israel mais Christophe Willem et les producteurs auraient pu dire que c’était pas une bonne idée… Cette fois on a touché le fond. Si c’est une excuse pour anticiper la défaite, c’est pas la peine. On n’a pas gagné depuis 41 ans, on n’est… Read more »

Racal
Guest
Racal

Euh… Non mais ça va pas bien? 1. Waterloo est une chanson d’amour qui parle d’une femme ou un homme qui s’abandonne à son/sa partenaire, avec la guerre comme métaphore (“I was defeated, you won the war – Promise to love you for ever more”). Ils ont pris Waterloo comme ils auraient pu prendre n’importe quelle bataille, il n’y a rien d’anti-Français là dedans. 2. La bataille de Waterloo c’était il y a plus de 200 ans et la France est depuis alliée avec tous ses anciens adversaires (tous ces pays ont participé aux commémorations ensemble en 2015). 3. Quand… Read more »

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

Bonne explication.
Mais il y a l’humour noir aussi, je pense. Peut-être. x

Guiguiid
Guest
Guiguiid

Il peut aussi être amusant de rappeler qu’en 1974, quand ABBA gagne avec Waterloo, la France avait du se retirer du concours quelques jours avant suite au décès du président Pompidou. Cela dans le but de préparer la diffusion de ses obsèques et de respecter une période de deuil audiovisuel. Comme quoi la France a toujours eu un peu du mal avec Waterloo! 😉 It could be fun to recall that in 1974, the year ABBA won with Waterloo, France withdrew from the contest a few days before because of the death of the French president in exercise : Georges… Read more »

PP
Guest
PP

And female singer Dani from France that year with song La vie est 25 ans was favorite number 1 for won Eurovision 1974, second on betting odds was Italy Gigliola who was won contest in 1974.
I think if we had France on contest that year that France would took some points from Sweden, The Netherlands and that Italy maybe be winner that year.

Azotman
Guest
Azotman

Bonsoir Racal, C’est beau la poésie, mais la chanson fait clairement référence à Napoléon. désolé de me sentir un peu patriote (au sens positif du terme pas confondre avec nationalisme…car le nationalisme c’est la guerre). Dans ce cas ABBA aurait pu choisir une autre bataille : Austerlitz, Valmy, Wagram au choix… Non, il ont choisi symboliquement la plus terrible de l’histoire de France. L’émission sera diffusée samedi. On verra la réaction des médias Français. Par ailleurs, il y a une autre revanche à prendre sur la Suède : l’Eurovision 1991 où les deux chansons avaient le même nombre de points… Read more »

Guiguiid
Guest
Guiguiid

I was at the recording of the second semi-final.
All that I can say is that the show was beautiful and some songs were stunning in live. Also the Marie Myriam fans will be happy to see her perform again (singing her wining song and the song of Salvador).
The result may surprise a lot of people as some fan favourites didn’t make it to the final.
Personally, I will be in front of my tv to watch it again the 20th of January !

Stephanie
Guest

Would make sense for Marie to cover Salvador’s song, she herself is of Portuguese descent. I can’t wait to watch the shows, TV5 Quebec is carrying them here in Canada

L'oiseau
Guest
L'oiseau

I don’t think she is very much in touch or attached to Portugal. I never saw her speaking in Portuguese.

Azotman
Guest
Azotman

Bonsoir Guiguiid,
Tu connais les qualifiés ?

Noée – L’un près de l’autre
Emmy Lyianna – OK ou KO
Louka – Mamma Mia
Pheno Men – Jamais sans toi

Madame Monsieur – Mercy
Jane Constance – Un jour j’ai rêvé
Nassi – Rêve de gamin
Sweem – Là-haut

J’ai bon ? J’en ai combien ? Je veux pas attendre jusqu’à Samedi… On le dira à personne, je te promets !!! De toute façon, on ne peut pas voter…
Salut, Maxime

Non merci
Guest
Non merci

Tu en as 4 de juste.

Thomas
Guest
Thomas

T’es sérieux de spoil comme ça ? Y en a qui ont pas vu l’émission et tu gâches le suspense.

Non merci
Guest
Non merci

Qu’est-ce que tu fais sur un site concernant l’Eurovision dans ce cas ? Éteins ton ordit et va te coucher.

Racal
Guest
Racal

On peut être fan de l’Eurovision et juste avoir envie d’avoir la surprise en direct? 🙂

Non Merci
Guest
Non Merci

Bah faut eviter d’aller sur les RS, les forums et les sites concernant l’ESC. Ça ne sert à rien de venir se plaindre ensuite. Vous ne pouvez vous en prendre qu’à vous même.

Bella
Guest
Bella

On vient pour en savoir plus sur le format du show, comme le suggère le titre de l’article (cover songs, semi-final allocation, etc.), et pour discuter des artistes. On est pas censés savoir que dans les commentaires, il y a un type qui était à l’enregistrement et qui va balancer les résultats.

Sur ce genre de forum, on met un SPOILER ALERT quand c’est comme ça, et les gens savent qu’ils doivent arrêter de lire. Sérieux, c’est relou.

Non Merci
Guest
Non Merci

Arrête de chialer. Personne n’a balancé de résultat là. Mais je peux le faire si tu insistes ?

CyxCy
Guest
CyxCy

Pas la peine. Il y a déjà un spécimen de troll qui s’en est chargé sur un autre post.

Bella
Guest
Bella

Balance tout ce que t’as envie de balancer, mais fais pas genre c’est la faute des lecteurs et sois pas agressif en plus.

Personne n’aime les spoilers sur internet. C’est pas nouveau, tu devrais savoir que ça se fait pas (genre pour les séries, y a des modérateurs de forum et ceux qui spoilent se font descendre en ligne).

Azotman
Guest
Azotman

Merci à toi, ca ménage un peu de suspense sans révéler l’essentiel. Ca laisse encore plein de combinaisons !!! Bisous à tous les gens qui râlent !

Ferenc
Guest
Ferenc

Hello! Please tell me that my favourtie, Jane Constance has made it to the Final!!!
I would be so upset if she hasn’t!

Non Merci
Guest
Non Merci

Nope she has not. She came 5th.

Ferenc
Guest
Ferenc

Thanks! That means that Nassi will represent France… I sould hv loved Jane… This is is 🙁
I think Nassi will bring France the trophy…