It’s one of the most eagerly awaited music events of the year — probably more famous than Christmas in Italy. And it will serve once again as a selection for Eurovision, which is why it is worth following the vicissitudes.

Sanremo Music Festival will be back on tv screens from 5 to 9 February 2019 with a large substantial change compared to previous editions.

Claudio Baglioni — host and artistic director confirmed at the helm of the kermesse for a second year in a row — has chosen to abolish the traditional division between Big names and Newcomers, launching a single competition with 24 names.

Twenty two will be chosen among well established artists, while two will come from the separated format Sanremo Giovani, open to emerging singers.

The show will air on Rai 1 on December 20 and 21. It will be on that occasion that we will discover the complete list of those who will go on the Ariston Theatre stage.

Which rumored names have found space on websites and newspapers these days? Let’s find out together!

The gigantic list of rumored acts starts with a bang! Il Volo would be ready to return to Sanremo to win another gold medal and, perhaps, to get the Eurovision revenge that many fans have been waiting for since “Grande amore” in 2015.

Gianluca, Ignazio and Piero are not the only former Eurovision acts to emerge from the rumour lists. There’s also Francesco Gabbani, the first artist in the history of Sanremo to make the double (Newcomers and Campioni category) in two consecutive editions. “Occidentali’s Karma” still echoes in the ears of thousands of eurofans, and it might be interesting to see in which musical direction the Tuscan artist would move if he were to return to Sanremo two years after his exploit.

Not to mention Raphael Gualazzi, runner-up at Eurovision 2011 with “Madness of Love“. The last release from the singer-songwriter and pianist dates back to 2016, when he launched the gold certified album “Love Life Peace” preceded by the success of the song “L’estate di John Wayne“. A comeback where everything has started for him is plausible.

There are also Raf and Umberto Tozzi. The couple of “Gente di mare” (3rd place at Eurovision 1987) has reunited thirty years later to launch an album together — which sadly debuted really poorly in the charts — and a tour that will see them perform in the Italian indoor arenas from the next spring. It’s understandable that they might attempt to get visibility to promote their project.

Two names are considered certain: Loredana Bertè and Ultimo.

The rock icon of Italian music was taken out at the last minute from the 2018 edition — with a lot of controversy shared on social media — for refusing a song proposed by Claudio Baglioni and written by Biagio Antonacci.

She would return in 2019 with a song called “Segreto” — yes, Loredana has defied the traditions already revealing the title of the proposed entry. Baglioni will certainly consider the success achieved by Loredana this summer with “Non ti dico no”.

On the other hand, Ultimo — winner of the Newcomers category in 2018 with “Il ballo delle incertezze” — would have the Ariston Theater’s door wide open not only for the tradition that has often seen the winners of the Newcomers category twelve months later among the Big, but above all because the Roman singer-songwriter was the breakthrough artist of the year, exceeding the 350,000 certified copies, between albums and singles, in a few months.

Among other artists with a long career we could find Patty Pravo and Nino D’Angelo.

The former went back home in 2016 with the prestigious Critics Award for the wonderful “Cieli immensi“. She is about to launch a new album in the spring of 2019. The latter — a Neapolitan singer — would probably step on stage with a young controversial act: Liberato. We know very little about him, nobody knows his real name and his face, but his songs get crazy numbers on YouTube and Spotify.

There is no lack of proposals among the talent show alumni. Elodie is looking for confirmation in the local music scene after the summer success of “Nero Bali” and the good outcome with her first participation in Sanremo 2017 with “Tutta colpa mia“, while former X Factor winners Chiara Galiazzo and Lorenzo Fragola need to come out of a slump following the disappointing results of their latest recording works.

Then there is the winner in charge of Amici di Maria De Filippi Irama, who actually took off from the New Proposals of Sanremo 2016, and is now eager to consolidate the lucky numbers of his latest projects and the smash hit “Nera“.

From X Factor could also return Giusy Ferreri — who despite the many records from her summer singles, never got much at the festival — and Enrico Nigiotti, ready to launch a new edition of his album “Cinderella”, went completely unnoticed despite the good airplay of his duet “Complici” with Gianna Nannini.

The names of Riki, Noemi, Deborah Iurato, Thomas, Carmen Ferreri and Federica Carta also appear on the lists. Who will have it?

And what about the festival debuts not related to TV shows? A name that represents the indie world, especially after the success of Lo Stato Sociale this year, seems a must. There is talk of three established artists, already active for some time, in search of the jump in the mainstream scene: The Zen Circus, Ex-Otago and the songwriter Francesco Motta.

But it seems that Baglioni is also looking for an artist representative of the trap scene. It would be Achille Lauro the most credited to take up the challenge, perhaps paired with Anna Tatangelo (with whom he recently released a new version of “Ragazza di periferia“) or more likely only with fellow producer Boss Doms.

Then there are artists who repeatedly took the stage of the Ariston Theater and would not dismiss a return. Indeed, in some cases a performance at Sanremo would be the only possible way for a career revival.

We move from the 2014 winner Arisa, ready to test herself under a new label, to the pop-rock band Modà, which until not long ago filled Italian stadiums and are now looking for a new record deal.

Then there could be Bianca Atzei, in a duet with Gianluca Grignani, Dolcenera, the legend of the Italian disco from the ’80s Ivana Spagna, Francesco Renga, Paola Turci, Nek, the band Negrita, the rapper Baby K, Tricarico, Simone Cristicchi, Irene Grandi and Dodi Battaglia.

What do you think? What acts would you like to see at Sanremo 2019? Who could snatch the trophy at the next Eurovision in Israel? Leave your comments below!

Read more Italy Eurovision news here

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Hannah
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Hannah

So many fantastic names in this list, I’m super excited for Sanremo this year!

Kyna
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Kyna

My wig is SNATCHED

Michèle
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Michèle

Can’t believe Francesco maybe bound for Eurovision again – he has such great and varied songs, many quieter ones such as ‘Immenso’, La Mia Versione des Ricordi’ and ‘Eternamente Ora’. Would love to see him qualify with a song like one of these.
Don’t think the nerves could stand it though!

Russian Fla-la-lag
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Russian Fla-la-lag

If I have ovaries, it would have been exploded by now right after seeing this news

Idan Cohen
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Idan Cohen

As a guy who lives in Tel-Aviv, I’m so gonna make a move on the left guy of Il Vollo, if they’re chosen to come.
Does someone know if he’s also interested in men?

Heck. he doesn’t need a hotel. he can sleep in my apartment.

(And in case you wonder, yes. I did try to make a move on Imri the one time I stumbled across him, but he had to go before I could charm him. not giving up, btw)

(Also, sorry for the very sexual comment)

Idan Cohen
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Idan Cohen

The question about his sexual preferences was brutally honest, btw

Henrikh Mugosa
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Henrikh Mugosa

I think you mean Gianluca Ginoble. Because if you meant Ignazio Boschetto, you would have to fight me first. 😀 Ignazio is mine mine mine…

Henrikh Mugosa
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Henrikh Mugosa

Apparently Gianluca has a fiancée…

Jaccobabe
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Jaccobabe

I think all three are supposed to be straight. I strongly doubt they would come out if they weren’t though, so…

La Signora
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La Signora

Don’t worry, that’s the same for me when I hear Imri Ziv almost naked speaking hebrew. I feel alive

srulik
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srulik

There is no one I’d like to see more than IL VOLO.
They had the best song in 2015(I’m still listening to it) and if they come back they’ll win ESC hands down.

esc1234
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esc1234

Il volo need to win and come back to win eurovision as they deserved in 2015 and the public voted them. The fact that when asked by EBU, italy said that they would host it bythemselves instead of having the swedish team, says it all.

Briekimchi
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Briekimchi

Dolcenera, please!

Loin dici
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Loin dici

YES! We will have an amazing season of Sanremo!

Sabrina
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Sabrina

If the rumors are right, we’ll have a super edition of Sanremo festival. I would gladly accept Gabbani, Il Volo or Gualazzi back and Ultimo would be perfect.

Joe
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Joe

Italy, as ever, come to play without intending to come to play. For all their success, what makes Italy so unique at Eurovision (at least in the years that they’ve used Sanremo to pick their entrants) is that none of those particular acts were designed to win Eurovision. They were designed to win Sanremo, and fortunately for the rest of us, Sanremo’s high standard for quality means that they still wind up sending perfect Eurovision acts. So Italy could win this whole thing (and I think at this point it’s less “if” and more “when”) without necessarily doing much to… Read more »

La Signora
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La Signora

Actually a big part of Italians dont’s see Sanremo as high standard music, the teens like indie/alternative music, but you get the point. We are like the “i don’t care about it, but I’m going to play anyway” ones in the contest and that something funny for me lol. I want something more happy and catchy for 2019, like Occidentali’s Karma

YourVision
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Ultimo would be amazing 😀

An American ESC Fan
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An American ESC Fan

Oh, wow!! So many great names here <3 I hope Italy wins next year (or at least really soon) because they almost always send high-quality entries that do well, but never win.

Étoile
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Étoile

Ultimo will be awsome.

Dawidek
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Dawidek

Giusy Ferreri please ??? her voice is so amazing and since « amor e capoeira » this summer she’s the one to watch i think …..

Lourdes
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Lourdes

I’m rooting for Ultimo! “Il Ballo delle Incertezze” from last year was masterpiece!

Jo.
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Jo.

Ultimo!!!

ESCFan2009
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ESCFan2009

Francesco <3 But I think, a second "Occidentalis Karma" wouldn't work as well as in 2017, the same with Il Volo. Great artists but please don't try to repeat the success with a too similar song.
Annalisa would be great! "Il Mondo Prima Di Te" is my personal winner in our German Fan Contest <3

Erasmus
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Erasmus

I’m must be the only one who isn’t excited by any of them…
I want Annalisa, Emma Marone, Francesca Michelin or Marco Mengoni back…

Henrikh Mugosa
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Henrikh Mugosa

Emma Marrone could be a good option. She had the weakest Italian entry since their return. So, I’m sure for her the only way is up…

ESCFan2009
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ESCFan2009

La Mia Citta was so underrated… The live performance was not the best tbh, but I LOVE this song so much <3

La Signora
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La Signora

No please, what a shame

Aqiria
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Aqiria

Quality jazz at Eurovision would be nice. Qualazzi for Italy 2019 <3

Nora
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Nora

I’m sorry for saying this out loud, but even if Il Volo came back they would do it with another “Grande amore” (most probably weaker version) and we already had one in ESC 2015. And I’m sure that we all know how these kinds of “repeating the previous success” entries end up in Eurovision.

PS. They were my winner in 2015.

IVerf
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IVerf

Actually IL VOLO sings pop, latin pop, popera, opera, and blues… So I can’t get the phrase “they would do it with another ‘Grande Amore'”. They just released a latin pop album indeed.

Nikki
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Nikki

I could die happy with have at least half this list. Preparing myself to have Italy as my Top 1 again.

Lurpak
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Lurpak

Il Volo, Raphael Gualazzi, Moda, Francesco Gabbani,are my favorites! That would be confusing to choose omg
Also I hope Rhapsody of Fire would join too ;w;

Nikki
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Nikki

I know, it looks lile someone just wrote everyone on my Italian playlist

Irish esc
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Irish esc

Omg (screams internally) il Volvo plz come back to Sanremo and then get Italy the win at Eurovision in 2019

Jack
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Jack

It’s like a champion of champions edition for Sanremo, insane line-up!

David
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David

I will miss Annalisa :___(

joff
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joff

Please we want Queen Annalisa.

Jack
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Jack

Same here, I already became a fan of Annalisa after hearing “Il Diluvio Universale” in Sanremo 2016 and waited patiently for her next appearance “Il mondo prima di te” took my breath away and I remember going to bed after midnight when Sanremo 2018 final was still taking place and hoping she’d pull off a shock victory but sadly no, I still reckon Annalisa would’ve scored tremendously well with juries in Lisbon and possibly triggered an exciting 3-way race with Netta & Eleni as well.

Dorian
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Dorian

Dear SANTA! I was a good girl all year!!
PLEASE, MAKE IL VOLO SAY YES TO SANREMO 2019!!!

Mirko
Guest
Mirko

Dear SANTA! I was a good boy all year!!
PLEASE, LET ITALY WIN THE EUROVISION 2019!

La Signora
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La Signora

Ahahah, I hope! Vote for us if the song is good