Last month, rumours emerged that Australia would be doing something to involve the public in its selection for Eurovision 2019. Now Australian media is reporting that this will involve a national final called Australia Decides.

The Courier Mail reports that Australia’s very first national final will be held in on the Gold Coast, Australia’s sixth largest city. The location was decided after a proposal from the Queensland Government and Gold Coast City Council was chosen over bids from Sydney and Melbourne.

The event will be held at the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre and the date for Australia Decides has been locked in for Saturday, February 9th.

The newspaper also has details about the format of the show. It says that broadcaster SBS and production company Blink TV will first select a shortlist of songs, and then match them with artists.

The acts will be voted on by an Australian jury and by the public televote. In Eurovision tradition, the jury will base their scoring on a rehearsal show the day before.

Blink TV director Paul Clarke commented on Australia Decides. He said the team have “great plans to make the Gold Coast Eurovision Central in February 2019”, but he also alluded to the dated, kitschy side of Eurovision, saying “spandex and sequins at the ready – it will be an awesome show”.

The Courier Mail also reports that SBS is now accepting song submissions from interested songwriters, with a deadline of November 4.

Australia’s four previous Eurovision acts have been internally selected. Australia’s best result was in 2016, when Dami Im placed second with “Sound of Silence”. Since then, Australia has struggled to pick up the European televote, picking up only two televote points in 2017 and was in last place with nine televote points in Lisbon.

Australia is the only country currently competing at the Eurovision Song Contest as an invited guest. As an EBU associate member, Australia must have their invitation approved by the Eurovision Reference Committee every year.

What do you think? What sort of songs would you like to hear in Australia Decides? Who would you like to see singing in the event? Sound off below!

Read more Australia Eurovision news here

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Nicola
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Nicola

Are SBS going to internally select the artists?

EscAU
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EscAU

lena won using this method, but levina came second last too
and i wish we’d stop with the ‘spandex and sequins’ ughhhh

Kim
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Kim

Please leave DNA out of it and please let the performer be part of the writing process or if not let the artists selected choose the song they will perform not just some random making the decisions for them .the singers know their voices better than anyone.

Nico
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Nico

“Blink TV will first select a shortlist of songs, and then match them with artists”

Hell no, this already sounds like a catastrophe to me. Matching premade songs with artists. That’s what Germany tried in 2017. Depends on the song I guess. Hope there won’t be DNA stuff

Troy
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Troy

You can be sure all the songs will be DNA and tbh DNA is the worst thing about our entries. So cookie cutter.

Nikki
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Nikki

Aussies always being just weird Brits. I mean, call their national final almost like the UK one is kinda funny. Is Mel Gyedroic Australian doppelganger hosting?

MsBurns
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MsBurns

Eek, I’m worried. I’ll have to wait and see, but I hope there is the offchance that an artist can be matched with their own song….

Tbh, I hope DNA takes a back seat and are part of the jury, rather than submitting songs.

I hope we get something out of the box. I hope our artists are good. I hope our songwriters will be original and creative.

SBS, let this be good.

Who dat
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Who dat

I wanted Client Liaison to go to ESC and do their thing, but now if this is how it’s being done I don’t want that anymore bc I don’t want someone else to be choosing their song and their outfits for them.

It's the BBC's fault, not the UK's
Guest
It's the BBC's fault, not the UK's

As Australia are comfortably in the contest now, they’re going downhill in terms of quality entries. Their last 2 songs have been underwhelming and neither deserved to qualify for the final. And to get Blink TV to shortlist the songs, my hopes aren’t high for Australia next year!

Lloyd
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Lloyd

I also think the hype of having Australia has gone now (at least by the public)

Mr. Vanilla Bean
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Mr. Vanilla Bean

I hope it’s not a final of ten songs written by DNA being sung by ten X-Factor participants.

Mark
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Mark

Most likely will be exactly that

Weißbrot
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Weißbrot

As soon as I heard ,, Blink TV will first select a shortlist of songs, and then match them with artists.” all my dreams and hopes were already crushed. Don’t get me wrong, this kind of concept has probably worked before …somewhere, sometime… BUT I feel like it just doesn’t work in most cases. I just hope Australia can do this right. The more national finals the better, I guess..

Mark
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Mark

SVT literally does this with Melodifestivalen every year

Weißbrot
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Weißbrot

I’m pretty sure Felix Sandman wasn’t matched with a random song that was written before… But what do I know?

Andi
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Andi

If I remember correctly, only about 20% of the Melfest entries are allowed to be written by the artists. The rest are usually matched up by broadcaster/label.

OohHoney
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OohHoney

“Blink TV will first select a shortlist of songs, and then match them with artists.” This will be horrendous ahhahahahha

Mark
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Mark

It’s what SVT does with Melodifestivalen

Anouska
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Anouska

I’m intrigued and excited. Can’t wait!

Étoile
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Étoile

It’s a good thing that they are trying different approaches, I hope they will have a variety of style of music/universe with their artists and their songs because those who represented Australia in the past at ESC and JESC were always sending the same kind of songs that looked like American generic songs to me. I hope they’ll take bold risks and they don’t think too much of “it must be a Eurovision song”. I wish them good luck. 🙂

Antranig Shokayan
Editor

This is going to be so much fun, I can’t wait to experience it!

James
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James

Live from Dream World? 🙂

Mark
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Mark

That’s exactly what I was thinking. They’ll probably use the Big Brother stage.

Joe
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Joe

They gotta watch themselves. It sounds like a great idea, if they get all the right people on the jury and have a good shortlist (which I’ll reckon the guys who wrote the last three entries will submit an entry to), but the “spandex and sequins” part gets me nervous. If they go goofy, less Sound of Silence and more Flying the Flag, they’re revving up for their first non-qualification.

Mark
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Mark

It’s the Australian way to take the piss.

Mark
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Mark

I don’t like this ‘Australian Jury’… But SBS probably can’t afford an international jury.

Erasmus
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Erasmus

If Slovenia could afford it last year – with Aminata, Kristian Kostov, Emmelie de Forest and Dami Im in the house, I think Australia could too

Mark
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Mark

Australia can, but SBS is a very poor Broadcaster.