Applications for X Factor Malta recently closed and producers now have the job of whittling down the acts. Previously Maltese songwriters have criticised the limits of the contest as the replacement for Malta’s Eurovision 2019 national selection. Now former Maltese Eurovision stars have had their say.
Maltese news site Malta Today spoke to a number of Maltese Eurovision acts and got their opinion on using the new X Factor Malta to double as Malta’s national selection for Eurovision 2018.
Amber — who represented Malta in 2015 with “Warrior” — talked about the positive side of using the X Factor. She noted that producing a Eurovision-quality song is not always within the budget of upcoming singers, but says that the “X Factor is now facilitating the way for anyone to take part in a large-scale competition.”
But Amber said she was a little confused about why X Factor Malta was also being used to select the Eurovision act. “For me they are different platforms. The ESC is a ‘song contest’ while X Factor goes beyond just singing, it is about finding someone with a twist, it is more of a reality show in search for talent.”
Kurt Calleja — who took Malta to the grand final in 2012 — noted that X Factor might benefit good singers who had never previously had strong enough songs for MESC. The “This is the Night” singer said, “This presents a massive opportunity to showcase their skills, make a name for themselves and eventually work with relevant-to-the-industry songwriters who can write a song that is tailor-made for the winner’s voice.”
But he also believed that X Factor and MESC should be kept separate, but added, “I respect PBS for taking such a courageous, risky, decision.”
Also weighing in on the matter was Ludwig Galea, who represented Malta at Eurovision 2004 as half of Julie and Ludwig. He stated, “I have nothing against X Factor per se but I’m against the fact it’s amalgamated with the ESC.”
All three artists confirmed to Malta Today that they would not be auditioning for X Factor Malta.
The comments from the Maltese Eurovision artists follow the recent remarks from veteran Eurovision songwriters. Songwriter Philip Vella warned that “Plonking up-and-coming singers on the Eurovision stage is a recipe for disaster.”
It has still not been confirmed exactly how the Maltese act for Eurovision 2019 will be chosen using the debut series of X Factor Malta. However, it is expected that the series winner will also win the ticket to Eurovision but their song will later be internally selected by the broadcaster.
What do you think? Should experienced artists be encouraged to enter X Factor Malta? Or should the competition focus on up-and-coming singers? Share your thoughts below!