UPDATE: While the selection jury process is underway, German broadcaster NDR has not yet confirmed if a national final will, in fact, be used to select the German act for Rotterdam.


NDR partner digame is now searching for the perfect Eurovision song for The Netherlands. Once again there will be a national final instead of an internal selection process.

After the German S!sters came second to last at Eurovision last year, many fans inside and outside of Germany were speculating whether there would be another edition of Unser Lied or if there would be an internal selection. Now, as ESC-Kompakt reports, NDR partner digame has made it official that the selection format will be repeated once more. The name of the show is not yet confirmed. But given that the other elements remain in place, it’d seem strange to suddenly call the show by another name.

After Levina’s second-to-last place in Kyiv, the broadcaster changed the selection process with a fantastic result in 2018 with Michael Schulte, ending in fourth place.

Singers and bands (with a maximum of 6 people) could apply for the German final until the 30th of August. But you can still submit your song until the 1st of October. NDR is searching for a contemporary song that stands out. It should also have a strong and clear message. Can’t choose your favourite? You can submit up to 5 songs! Songs can come from any genre. If you want to submit your song, visit mein-esc-lied.de.

“At the Eurovision Song Contest, among other things, it is about speaking about important topics and to reach the viewer’s emotions. We want to encourage composers to send in songs which are about current topics or which evoke emotions through the song text.”

The selection process

The German broadcaster will not change anything from last year’s process. There will once again be a Eurovision-Panel consisting of 100 fans (chosen from thousands of applicants) and a jury made up of 20 international music experts.

If you send in a song, both juries will evaluate it with strict criteria. Your song will be anonymised to make sure there won’t be any cheating. All songs will be judged in a first round, and a hand full of songs will be picked. In a second round — the pairing process — a few singers will sing these songs to gauge which song fits which singer the most.

If you applied as a singer, your music video will be judged by both juries as well, and of course will be anonymised. As well as the songs, the juries will pick the best applicants who then make the next step, probably 10 to 20 singers. These singers will visit songwriting sessions – probably the songwriting camp as they did last year. There, the applicants will work together with professional songwriters. In addition to the songwriting camp, the singers will go through the above mentioned pairing process. All songs will be recorded for both juries who will pick the best pairings.

What do you think? Do you trust in the process? Or do you think an internal pick would have been better? Let us know in the comment section below!

35 Comments
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beccaboo1212
1 year ago

People born in late 2003 or early 2004 can compete…but NOT for Germany. In fact, Unser Lied für Rotterdam is open to candidates born before February 2002.
https://mein-esc-lied.de/faq/

Uw Frigo
Uw Frigo
1 year ago

The only thing they did great was to provide lamposts to Belgian highways.

Eurovision Online Contest

Germany is hit and miss. Every time they had a good result it was mostly luck because they found the right artist (Lena, Roman Lob, Michael Schulte). They haven’t found the right format to select songs yet…

Rob
Rob
1 year ago

Imho, every country should do what’s best for them. Sometimes such a show can prove success (see Melodien Festival) but sometimes it backfires. Look at The Netherlands: internal picks can sometimes blow up in your face (Trijntje/Traincha), but can also create winning/profitable songs (Duncan Laurence, The Commen Linnets). But when they had a jury-vote program, the artists never made it to the final.

It’s all in the eye of the beholder.

JOWST NE
JOWST NE
1 year ago

No no no, ARD what are you doing? After last year’s failure, you carry on with the same exact thing?

Songwriting camps are a big NO in my books, especially when a country like Germany has the biggest music export in Europe

The UK is working with national record labels within their music industry, why can’t Deutschland?

Thomas Schreiber….please retire…aufwiedersehen für immer!

Azaad
Azaad
1 year ago
Reply to  JOWST NE

Well with The Netherlands looking like it’ll most likely escape the hosting curse, Sanremo and DE being proven to deliver excellent and decent results respectively, and the UK and Spain going internal as well as making concentrated efforts to improve, I guess Germany have to be a sacrificial lamb and claim that last place spot.

L'oiseau
L'oiseau
1 year ago

Well, I must praise German TV for its persistance, in better of a more flatering word…

L'oiseau
L'oiseau
1 year ago
Reply to  L'oiseau

Oops… changed my webrowser and look what happens 🙂

Sun
Sun
1 year ago

There’s nothing wrong with the selection this year. It’s all the jury and the public’s wrong choice. They only chose the safe choice to represent them. So maybe they can go back to internal selection to ask for some daring songs.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
1 year ago

So basically the same disaster as this year. Good call. Always stay to true to your NDR dinosaur selves.

FYROM
FYROM
1 year ago

Songwriting camps are the cancer of eurovision

Joe
Joe
1 year ago

I still think this is a good model to pick the song. You can’t just blame the jury since the televoters also picked Sister. Sometimes a good selection can still end up in a mediocre pick (Id say the same about France or Hungary this year).

Barneby
Barneby
1 year ago
Reply to  Joe

I think I read somewhere that they try this format without changes one lasr time to see if Michael Schulte was a lucky pick and it is bad or if S!sters was an unlucky pick and the format is actually good.

Anyway, the fault lied with the jury and the public.
As if the majority of Germans would know what good music is lol
I say that as a German…
We often do this kinda disappointing picks

Maybe we should every other country decide our song since we like to sink it into the ground

Joe
Joe
1 year ago
Reply to  Barneby

Imagine if then they come mid-table and don’t know for sure.

Joe
Joe
1 year ago

In other news: to the surprise of no one, Spain isn’t using OT to select their entry this year. The director-general of RTVE pretty bluntly said that they’re trying to get Rosalía to do it but they’re having trouble. They don’t know whether it’ll be a public or internal selection (SEND FAMOUS). So, to recap: Albania – FiKmas as usual Armenia – No confirmation yet, but there have been hints that Depi Evratesil is coming back Australia – Australia Decides rides again (very excited) Austria – Internal selection Azerbaijan – Probably an internal selection Belarus – No word yet. There… Read more »

Polegend Godgarina
Polegend Godgarina
1 year ago

songwriting camps in 2020 ? i have to laugh

Loin dici
1 year ago

Well, at least it worked in 2018. The artists in Unser Lied seems have to be involved in the songwriting, which is a good camp criterion.

ESCFan2009
ESCFan2009
1 year ago
Reply to  Loin dici

Exactly! The thing is, not every singer has to write melodies and lyrics all ALONE. Many professionals are working in a team. So ofc songwriting camps CAN be good, if the singer works with composers on a song based on his personal talents ^^

Idksmth
Idksmth
1 year ago

Honestly, the NF works quite well but Germany can never, except 2018 ofc, pick the best song. This year they had 3 songs that could bring them to top 15. I’m talking Makeda, lilly among clouds and Aly Ryan. If they get rid of the “expert jury” who are biased as we’ve seen this year, then maybe it wpuld be a better balance because only the panel seemed to know what’s working, and as for the televote I hope they do better. I hope to see a change of the demographic of the people that watch the show. Unless they… Read more »

Serv
Serv
1 year ago

I feel like the national final itself isn’t necessarily a problem, but the broadcaster (NDR) that is handling and broadcasting it. I dare say that Eurovision is mainly followed by people not older than… let’s say 40, and NDR – as a broadcaster with 40+ year old people as their main target audience – has little to no relation to us younger folks. As a reference: in the years 2010-2012 NDR collaborated with ProSieben, a popular broadcaster among younger generations. That co-operation was what made Eurovision interesting again as it reached far more people and therefore could promote it even… Read more »

Lars
Lars
1 year ago

The show and its format are not the problem but the voting is. Like, both jury and televotes are tampered that it blatantly favored the weakest song during the 2019 national final. It is as if you would question the motive of the ones responsible for it and why the results were like that.

Roelof Meesters
Roelof Meesters
1 year ago

A songwriting camp almost always fails, a succesful ESC song is almost always written or inspired by the singers tgemselves. Assigning songs to singers makes it unpersonal, look at the bottom 2 this year.

KESC
KESC
1 year ago

Sorry, but as someone who lives in Germany, I can just say that this national selection is useless. I don’t say that the songs are the worst, on the contrary, the last 2 editions were really good song wise, but Germany can do much better by internally selecting an artist that really has stage presence and the charisma to bring Germany back on the top of the leaderboard. And the most important Germany needs a good song. Most of the songs in this national Selection are typical ‘Eurovision’ entires and that’s why most of the people here in Germany make… Read more »

NickC
NickC
1 year ago

I am sorry but I feel Michael schulte was living proof of the German saying …even blind chicken finds corn once in a while. There is something fundamentally wrong about the whole process, but I don’t know what. And before you attack me with insults and down votes, do you really think it is a coincidence that Germany had so many bottom three placings recently? Maybe they should get rid of the expert jury. Maybe they should get rid of pairings. Maybe they should send wolfsheim.

Patrick
Patrick
1 year ago
Reply to  NickC

The difference is that Michael wrote the song himself and it was authentic…. writing a song a put two girls together they don’t know each other and calling them sisters…. just stupid and unbelievable!

James
James
1 year ago
Reply to  Patrick

“Calling them sisters, just stupid and unbelievable.”

Tell that to every sorority out there.

Kieran Adams
Kieran Adams
1 year ago
Reply to  NickC

Its a shame they don’t just send revolverheld.

Skiwalko
Skiwalko
1 year ago

It’s a good format, though I think that they should get rid of the jury – I feel like Eurovision-panel does its job pretty well, and defeats the purpose of having jury at all. As we’ve seen this year, the jury chose “Sister” – an entry that did quite poorly at Eurovision, while the Eurovision-panel picked “Wear Your Love”, an act that, I think it’s fair to say, would have done better at the contest.

Kieran Adams
Kieran Adams
1 year ago
Reply to  Skiwalko

but then the german public also picked sisters

Sußleid
Sußleid
1 year ago

I’m really not a fan of assigning songs to singers. Singers should have nearly or full control over their song. And songwriting camps is definitely not something I’d do, the BBC eventually learnt that they weren’t working, so why can’t we?

Grant Knapper
Grant Knapper
1 year ago

Send Aly Ryan

Rasmus Bording Irlind
Rasmus Bording Irlind
1 year ago
Reply to  Grant Knapper

aly ryan only nf

Skiwalko
Skiwalko
1 year ago

“Unser Lied fur Rotterdam” will take place in 2020? Now that’s a shocker!
On a serious note, the past two years Germany gave us really good songs in their NF. I love “Sister”, but it clearly wasn’t the right choice for Eurovision, like “Wear Your Love” or “Surprise” would have probably been. I hope they manage to pick the right one for ESC 2020, cause I really can feel another win coming for them in the near future, and it might just as well be the next year.