Spain isn’t exactly consistent with its Eurovision selection methods. In fact, the country is yet to keep a selection format for more than two consecutive years. So it’s not really a surprise that it appears that they’re planning another format change ahead of Eurovision 2020.
On Tuesday, Toñi Prieto revealed some new details about Spain’s participation in Rotterdam. TVE’s entertainment director said that RTVE will make significant changes in its selection process. She also said that they have been working on said changes for two months now. Previously, RTVE announced that Operación Triunfo will be held in 2019. But it wasn’t clear whether or not the show will decide the Spanish singer for ESC 2020, as it did for the past two years.

After RTVE announced the dates for OT 2019, it seemed unlikely that the talent show would be Spain’s national final in 2020. And with that fans resumed arguing about whether Spain should change the format once more. Spain will come to Rotterdam after landing outside of the top 20 for five consecutive years, so… why not change? Let’s take a look at how well switching things up has gone in recent years.

A trip down memory lane

The last time Spain had an internal selection to determine their representative was in 2015. Edurne’s “Amanecer” only landed in a disappointing 21st place.Little did they know, Edurne’s result would become their best in five years…

So the Spaniards decided to change the existing format after just one year and announced Objetivo Eurovisión. Barei won the inaugural edition with “Say Yay” by a landslide. However, in May the Euro-family said nay, and Spain finished 22nd. So Spain decided to change things up again.

Consequently, a new format for OE debuted in 2017, and after a fairly controversial final, Manel Navarro emerged victorious. He waved the Spanish flag in Kiev, and delivered a sunny performance (with one particular high note)…that put him in dead last. Ouch.

After the euro-drama simmered down, RTVE decided to let the public have their say. Amaia & Alfred won the first edition of Operación Triunfo as a national selection. As the fresh couple finished 23rd, the Spanish broadcaster tweaked the OT format.

This one included online voting, an evaluation committee and an expert panel. Miki won the contest, but despite faring quite well with the betting odds (and the fans!), Europe tore off Spain’s blindfold. “La Venda” sank Spain to another 22nd place.

Should Spain have an internal selection? If you support the NF idea, what revamps would you like to see Spain make? Tell us in the comment section!

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Kredential
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Kredential

Spain’s biggest problem is that they are not consistent with their selection choices. If your results are as bad as they are, find a method, stick to it, focus on letting it grow and I am sure success will follow. Throwing a bunch of selection methods at a wall hoping they’ll stick is clearly not working. IMO, they need to internally select somebody who can break their chain of bad results (a la Pastora), and then use that goodwill to reset with a national selection that will draw a good amount of attention and interest to create a solid NF.… Read more »

Sabrina
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Sabrina

The way RTVE has been dealing with their selection process reflects the Spanish sequence of failures in Eurovision much more than the level of most of the entries themselves. If they don’t want an internal selection, at least they could take a look at what countries like France, Portugal, Slovenia and Australia have been doing with their national finals.

Joe
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Joe

What I find bizarre yet interesting about Spain is that they know the different components of a successful entry (good singer, catchy song, good staging director), yet they never seem to know how to implement all three or match them up right. Like this year: “La venda”? Excellent song! Still bopping to it. Miki? Charismatic, confident, energetic performer. Staging director? The guy responsible for staging “My Lucky Day” and “Hold Me,” who has a style completely unsuited for a pump-up party anthem. That song was smothered under the weight of the unnecessary gimmicks and props (the giant set, the steadicam,… Read more »

Joe
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Joe

This, incidentally, added to the cocktail of problems with “Do It for Your Lover” – not an awful song in the studio cut, but Manel Navarro couldn’t handle it live and Hans Pannecouke was not the right guy to figure it out. Felt like RTVE said, “Hey, that guy knows how to stage people with guitars! Get him in there!” Break it down even more: Amanecer: great orchestrations, great vocals, surprisingly good staging, all for an incredibly boring song that everyone forgot. Say Yay: had the cute gimmick with the dance, it was a generally fun song, but the staging… Read more »

Sabrina
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Sabrina

Totally agree with you, Joe. It seems Spain is always looking for a different way to ruin their own aspirations. Even if they had a series of bad national selections in a row, they still had material to do at least slightly better and avoid the bottom 6. I believe “Do It For Your Lover” was unsaveable (not just because the song was weak, but also because of the whole mess they did while selecting it). But even with the crowdpleaser “La Venda”, they found a way to diminish its strenghts by overstaging (the exact opposite mistake they made with… Read more »

Jowst Nej
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Jowst Nej

This woman doesn’t have a clue. Every year, the same is said and Spain ends up between 22nd – 26th place.

I feel sorry for Spanish fans, a broadcaster that doesn’t understand the contest and has the weakest average placing out of all the big 5 countries in the last 5 contests. Someone else needs to takeover imo, give Spain the long-waited results they need!

TheDr Mistery
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TheDr Mistery

Lucie Jones was 15th mostly thanks to juries but other than that UK had even less impressive results than Spain – always 24th or lower.

Jowst Nej
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Jowst Nej

I said in the last 5 contests. The UK has an average placing of 22.6, Spain has one of 22.8

Not by much, but it still makes Spain only a fraction weaker!

TheDrMistery
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TheDrMistery

I’d take Spanish results over British ones. I know it’s about 5 last contests and what I wrote is true.

James
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James

Germany has the worst track record out of the Big 5 since at least 2014 I think. They’ve been either dead last or second to last.

Jowst Nej
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Jowst Nej

They did get a top 5 placing in 2018, so that increases their average. Every other year since 2013, Germany have always been in the bottom 10 (mostly in the bottom 2)

jack
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jack

how about allowing established artists to compete and not having the constestants of OT who most of them dont want to go to eurovision? thats a good start.

James
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James

Or rather cast people in OT who do want to go to Eurovision.

insalata di cesare
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insalata di cesare

Mirela. Contigo. TONGO!

Paul
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Paul

I don’t understand why Spain keeps doing so badly – they’ve had some really enjoyable entries…

Joe
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Joe

Famous is RIGHT THERE. Internally select him and do a national final to pick his song. Ruth Lorenzo said she wanted to write a song for him! There’s a way for you to not screw this up again, Spain! (And find a staging director who matches the song for once).

Max
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Max

Seriously, I am an OT and i implore you not to use the OT + ESC formula anymore! its been proven countless times that it does not work.

Instead, they should internally choose Ruth Lorenzo, she has out of this world vocals and writes really good pop songs, and, honestly, she gave Spain the best staging they have ever had, elegant and simple, yet effective.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
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Mr. Vanilla Bean

Maybe select Mirela, after the way you did her in.
I think sometimes you just need to set high goals for yourself. In this case: getting back to a placing in the top 21.

James
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James

The Kyiv performance by Manel was such a highlight that year. Glad to see his head held high despite that years later.

A bigger question remains: Who will join the other ex-representantes in the next Netflix España skit next year?

Phary
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Phary

These skits are amazing!

James
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James

De acuerdo. 🙂

TheDr Mistery
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TheDr Mistery

I’d like to see reactions of those 2 jurors who pushed Manel to the win and said that this song will be great in ESC. Lame/fixed.