Earlier this year, fans had to wait a nail-biting 48 hours between Mahmood winning Sanremo 2019 and confirming that he would represent Italy in Tel Aviv. But next year there won’t be such drama. Broadcaster RAI has released the rules for Sanremo 2020, which includes a clause that requires participating acts to confirm ahead of the competition if they wish to go to Eurovision
Competing artists — and their record companies — are required to confirm their willingness to participate in Eurovision by signing a form and submit it to RAI ahead of Sanremo 2020. If the winner of the contest has not previously confirmed for Eurovision, RAI reserves the right to choose another artist using their own criteria.
Changes to Sanremo 2020
The rules for Sanremo change from year to year. This time, the show will also not include an expert jury and televoters won’t have their say on the Big Artists until the final night.
Instead, voting on the first two nights will be done by the demoscopic jury alone — a demographically selected people’s jury. The third night introduces a new type of jury — the hard-working Sanremo orchestra and backing vocalists.
On the fourth night, voting will be done by the press jury alone. On the fifth and final night, the top three acts and the superfinal winner will be decided by a combination of demoscopic jury, press jury and televote.
And in 2020, there will only be 20 competing acts — down from the 24 on stage in 2019. Last year’s experiment — which gave the top two Sanremo Giovani acts a competing place in Sanremo has been scrapped for 2020. The six top acts from Sanremo Giovani will only have a place in the Sanremo Newcomers section, along with two acts from the Area Sanremo contest.
Sanremo 2020 format
First night: Tuesday 4 February
- The first ten Big Artists will perform their competing songs. Voting will be done by 100% demoscopic jury with no eliminations.
- The first four Newcomer songs will also be performed. The voting will also be determined by the demoscopic jury. The top two acts will qualify for the Newcomers semi-final.
Second night: Wednesday 5 February
- The other ten Big Artists will perform their competing songs. Again, the voting will be decided 100% by demoscopic jury with no eliminations.
- The other four Newcomer songs will be performed, And again, the demoscopic jury will vote and the top two acts will qualify for the Newcomers semi-final.
Third night: Thursday 6 February
- The 20 competing Big Artists will perform a cover of previous Sanremo song, performing with either Italian or foreign guest singers. Voting for this night will be made by the Sanremo orchestra’s musicians and the show backing vocalists. There will be no eliminations.
- The four semi-finalists in the Newcomers category will perform their songs again. This time the voting will be decided by 34% televoting, 33% press jury and 33% demoscopic jury. The top two acts will qualify for the Newcomers grand final.
Fourth night: Friday 7 February
- The 20 Big Artists will perform their songs again. The voting for this night will be 100% press jury with no eliminations.
- The two Newcomer finalists will perform their songs again. The winner will be decided by 34% televoting, 33% press jury and 33% demoscopic jury.
Fifth night: Saturday 8 February
- The 20 competing songs will be performed again. The top three will be decided by 34% televoting, 33% press jury and 33% demoscopic jury. The results of the previous four days will also be included to determine the top three.
- In the super final, the top three acts will again be decided by 34% televoting, 33% press jury and 33% demoscopic jury
What do you think? Are you happy with the format of Sanremo 2020? Which acts would you like to see compete at the Ariston Theatre in February? Tell us your thoughts below!