They’re the European nation that staged one of the most successful turnarounds at Eurovision ever, moving from six straight non-qualifications and two years of non-participation to back-to-back Top 4 finishes.

And while Bulgaria left our beloved song contest following the 2018 contest, there’s now hope they may soon get back in the game.

That’s after Bulgaria’s official Twitter account — ever the source of speculation and intrigue — revealed that a decision on a possible return will be made by the end of September.

Naturally Eurofans were shocked when Bulgaria announced that they would skip Eurovision 2019 in Tel Aviv because of financial difficulties — even if it wasn’t their first hiatus.

After years of setbacks, the Bulgarian broadcaster decided not to send a candidate to Copenhagen in 2014. They skipped Vienna a year later too.

But then came the glory years. In 2016 the country returned with Poli Genova — its 2011 act who had been eliminated in the semis. Her song “If Love Was A Crime performed extremely well: it received 307 points and finished in fourth place in the final. This was Bulgaria’s highest final ranking ever, a record that was immediately improved on a year later when 17-year-old Kristian Kostov sang “Beautiful Mess”. Kostov won his semi-final and finished second in the grand final. In 2018, Equinox also made it to the final with “Bones”, generating a lot of buzz before ending up in 14th place.

 

But after three very successful years, and a change of priorities among BNT’s new leadership, Bulgaria announced it wouldn’t participate in Eurovision 2019 in Israel. The broadcaster put it down to financial priorities, like the increased costs for foreign productions, buying more rights to sporting events, increasing the salaries of employees at BNT and purchasing major film packages and programmes.

Apparently the broadcaster had amassed a debt of 50 million Lev, or about 25 million euros. Given all of that, if Bulgaria does return to Eurovision it is likely that the financial onus would fall heavily on its act, their record label and private support.

Are you excited for the comeback of Bulgaria? What is your favorite Bulgarian entry ever?

The broadcaster has previously indicated they would again use internal selection instead of a national final to select their entry.

Let us know in the comment section down below!

56 Comments
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eurofangr
eurofangr
3 years ago

Bulgaria became my favorite ESC county since 2016 and I supported them from Greece so I hope our neighbours will return (in 2018 I voted 20 times just them lmao)

Denis
Denis
3 years ago

Beautiful Mess isn’t just the name of Bulgaria’s most successful entry, it is now also the name to summarize Bulgaria’s ESC participation..

Karlan
Karlan
3 years ago

I think there will be exactly 40 countries.Bulgaria unfortunately not among them.

so sad NOT
so sad NOT
3 years ago

comment image

Rob
Rob
3 years ago

My dream would be Lebanon entering (sort of again): this song is brilliant!

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=iGgW9OrgcxQ

Also, Bulgaria has SO much talent! The chalga-scene alone: people might frown upon it, but people: they can sing!

Ixuxu
Ixuxu
3 years ago

CZECH REPUBLIC: 152 submitted songs.

Karlan
Karlan
3 years ago
Reply to  Ixuxu

Fast but it’s bad.Quantity does not mean quality.

Steve
Steve
3 years ago

Why’s everyone interested in quantity? Isn’t prefer quality over quantity. Let’s have 26 countries with quality songs. I’d get rid of many countries. We leave them traumatised by giving 0 points and we feel happy about that???

infinity
infinity
3 years ago
Reply to  Steve

But who can decide which are those 26 quality songs? Each year weak songs come from different countries. A country can have a weak song one year, and a winner the next year. We can’t get rid of countries. And the ones traumatized by low points, it happens to be in big 5.

Steve
Steve
3 years ago
Reply to  infinity

Organisers should internally pick up the best 21 (big 5 should automatically make it t to the final) entries and allow them to compete in a live broadcasted contest.

Joe
Joe
3 years ago
Reply to  Steve

That is dumb. Countries fundamentally enjoy the experience of sending people to another country and at least getting the chance to perform there. They tried that strategy before in 1996 and it was a massive waste of time and money.

Steve
Steve
3 years ago
Reply to  Joe

Things have changed ever since 1996. Why do people need to get traumatised because of political voting? I’m against that. Also, having bad quality songs deteriorates the reputation of of the contest. By contrast, having only bops in it will dramatically increase the interest towards it worldwide. Organisers can at least identify quality songs and let them through.

SoldierOfLove
SoldierOfLove
3 years ago
Reply to  Steve

Aren’t they like, doing that already? Bad songs get eliminated in the semi-finals, and we are left with the best 26 in the final. That is literally the whole point.

Steve
Steve
3 years ago
Reply to  SoldierOfLove

Why do you need public humiliation of 15+ countries and their performers? Sometimes it kills performers’ career, not to mention evening to late-night trauma of the audience in eliminated countries?

infinity
infinity
3 years ago

Bulgaria can participate if they find sponsors. Is it the broadcaster itself in debt to EBU?
I worry about one thing : they want to copy Beautiful Mess, just like Cyprus wants to copy Fuego. It’s such a trap. This obsession can block a country for years.

Mr X
Mr X
3 years ago
Reply to  infinity

I would live another participation of Sofi Marinova for Bulgaria with an ethnic song in Bulgarian.

Paul Tatum
Paul Tatum
3 years ago
Reply to  Mr X

Mihaela Marinova or ALMA (not the french one or finnish one) should rep bulgaria if they come back

Trash KAN
Trash KAN
3 years ago

They are not ready even if people want them to return.

Stevan
Stevan
3 years ago

They won’t retuen in 2020 and that’s a fact

Ixuxu
Ixuxu
3 years ago

In the end, they didn´t

Fast Food Music Lover
Fast Food Music Lover
3 years ago

I want a pop banger from Bulgaria but I don’t want BNT to become bankrupt… Hmm, there is no win-win situation.

Skiwalko
Skiwalko
3 years ago

Seeing Bulgaria back would be great, no doubt, but for now I’d be happy enough if all the countries from 2019 showed up to the party, cause with HRT (Croatia) stating that “they cannot confirm the participation” and record low viewing figures in Hungary it’s not that certain. And you can never rule out some unexpected turn of events (like it happened with Maruv or Ovidiu Anton). Also, could EBU finally invite Kazakhstan? Poor guys have been waiting for so long and would surely give us an act to remember if they got a chance.

domsi
domsi
3 years ago
Reply to  Skiwalko

Don’t worry about HRT and Croatia, they start thinking about Eurovision in September and they never confirm participation before September…I am from Croatia and I think that we will participate, but Dora probably won’t be held next year (The Voice starts on December 7th 2019 and ends on February 22nd 2020)

Karlan
Karlan
3 years ago
Reply to  domsi

Send Manntra, please.

Nikko
Nikko
3 years ago

It will be like this: *ring ring* *ring ring* Borislav Milanov: “Hello?” BNT: “Hi Boris, here is the national broadcaster of Bulgaria. Since we achieved very good results with you from 2016-2018, we would like you to assign you again with the upcoming Eurovision. So would it be possible that you take the responsibility and the costs because we are financially short of cash? Boris: “I’m sorry but my wife Tamara Gachechiladze gave birth to our child some months ago and we are very busy with it.” BNT: “But you are a very good music producer and -” Boris: “NO!”… Read more »

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
3 years ago
Reply to  Nikko

There are plenty of other options left if BNT is willing to rise to the occasion like never before.
Bank of Russia: “Hello?”
BNT: “Hey, we really wanna spend insane amounts of money for god-knows-what to win Eurovision because that’s how it works, isn’t it? Could you help us dig an even deeper hole where we’ll be forever in your debt and we will in turn just replace all of our own stuff with Russia Today? Probably, nobody would even notice.”

Africavision
Africavision
3 years ago

Are you excited for the comeback of Bulgaria?
DUH!
What is your favorite Bulgarian entry ever?
IF LOVE WAS A CRIME… DUH! lol

Loin dici
3 years ago
Reply to  Africavision

And people left Love Unlimited and Water aside. This is pretty accurate.

Polegend Godgarina
Polegend Godgarina
3 years ago

three-time bankrupt broadcaster bnt better start looking for sponsors now. they could pull a san marino n leave the fees n all the costs up to the participant/sponsors, gery-nikol’s daddy could easily pay for bulgaria’s entire participation!

Katariina
Katariina
3 years ago

If they have the money then do it, but don’t go into further debt just to appease the fans. Didn’t they just declare bankruptcy a month or so ago?

EZz
EZz
3 years ago

Yes why not, they definitely should come back, bigger, better, and stronger to show all the other countries how to do it right. Plus considering Ukraine had a two year break to only come back and win, Plus Portugal I believe had a little break and came back and win, Maybe Bulgaria could have that same luck, to win and take everyone to Sofia 2021.

Kris
Kris
3 years ago
Reply to  EZz

Ukraine had a one year break

OrangeVorty
OrangeVorty
3 years ago

If they’re going to send any old tut from local record companies, I’d rather they stay away until they can afford the innovative approaches that have served them well in recent years.

FYROM
FYROM
3 years ago
Reply to  OrangeVorty

Yes!! Let’s not have something local! Let’s have American talent show rejects again for Bulgaria like in 2018!

pepe
pepe
3 years ago
Reply to  OrangeVorty

Buying Symphonix songs is an innovative approach?

Joe
Joe
3 years ago

The comebacks came in waves, too. Year by year. 2010: The big one, of course, was Germany, turning around five years of mediocre finishes to snag a victory. Also, on a slightly lower scale, Belgium finally making it to the final, also with a pretty low-key song. 2011: Austria and Hungary returning and qualifying, plus the long-awaited and spectacular return of Italy. 2012: Sweden building on Eric Saade’s strong result in 2011 to finally top the scoreboard again. Plus, on a smaller scale, Albania managing to make the top five. 2013: The Netherlands turning around an increasingly dire non-qualifying streak,… Read more »

Joe
Joe
3 years ago

I would like to have them back if they’re in a stable enough place to return. Their comeback was one of the most triumphant ones in a decade full of them, even if the songs (save for If Love Was a Crime) never made much of an impression on me. Fundamentally, if they want to do it, the more the merrier.

Joe
Joe
3 years ago
Reply to  Joe

Also, for what it’s worth, here are the countries that continually (or briefly) saw big old comebacks in the 2010s: Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia (kinda), Cyprus, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, San Marino, Slovenia, Sweden, and Switzerland. Said it before, I’ll say it again: the 2010s were the decade of the comeback, and the last three years were a bonanza of unexpected but spectacular comebacks (the triple-whammy of Portugal, Bulgaria, and Moldova at the top of the scoreboard in 2017; the load of returns to the final over established… Read more »

ESCFan2009
ESCFan2009
3 years ago

@Ahoy: Love you for that comment haha 😀 #Maastricht2020

Roy Moreno
Roy Moreno
3 years ago

Definitely a worthy country! I really wish to see them return to the contest as soon as possible

Loin dici
3 years ago

It’s better to stabilize their financial position first, considering they would probably do the Symphonix+SJB way again. Impromptu plans have bigger risk of failing and BNT is not in a good position for that.

Jo.
Jo.
3 years ago

Fine example of mismanagement: two years ago they wanted to host the contest, now they’re bankrupt without even doing it…something went wrong quite quickly.
Anyway, hope to see them back, most likely in 2021 though.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
3 years ago
Reply to  Jo.

A fun summary. I can’t help loving the irony of it all, even though I’d rather have them in the game.

Viktor
Viktor
3 years ago
Reply to  Jo.

Your example is very inaccurate. Broadcasters spend tons of money for tv content, licences for events, sport, producercs, tv series and shows…also administration, salaries, equipment. Eurovision is just a 3-day boutique song format which is just a micro fragment from the broadcaster’ year tv programme. So if BNT is in depths it is mostly because of bad management in the years and it doesnt have anything to do with their ambition to win the ESC as every other country

FYROM
FYROM
3 years ago

Former yugoslav Republic of macedonia is the new Bulgaria in eurovision

Joe
Joe
3 years ago
Reply to  FYROM

We call it North Macedonia now. Why is this so hard to deal with?

Roy Moreno
Roy Moreno
3 years ago
Reply to  Joe

Ignore, it’s simply to be provocative…

FYROM
FYROM
3 years ago

They won’t return. Let’s keep it real

Joe
Joe
3 years ago
Reply to  FYROM

There can only be one Balkan country with a historically shaky track record suddenly turning it around?

Roelof Meesters
Roelof Meesters
3 years ago

If Bulgaria returns and Kazakhstan debutant we would have 44 countries and I would love to see that record in my country.

Tusán
3 years ago

Kazakhstan will compete one day but I think we have to wait at least 2-3 more years for that. It will definitely happen in the 2020s tho.

Joseph Mendy
Joseph Mendy
3 years ago

We don’t even if it’s even gonna be in Maastricht. Jumping to conclusions too sooner I see.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
3 years ago

Please get your song from a different source this time, unless the offer is really awesome.

FanESC
FanESC
3 years ago

I hope so much they’ll come back next year. With Ukraine, we’d have 43 countries just like in 2018, it’d be so cool. And then seeing Kazakhstan and/or Kosovo making their debut. Then the US too, no I’m joking, lol.

Joe
Joe
3 years ago
Reply to  FanESC

Kosovo isn’t debuting – the EBU shut that down a few months ago. Kazakhstan, on the other hand, doesn’t feel totally unrealistic

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
3 years ago
Reply to  Joe

That depends if Kazakhstan is sent a special invitation to participate like Australia. probably more likely than Kosovo, though I’m not banking money on it.