The first rule of Melodifestivalen is that you do not talk about Melodifestivalen. Yet Swedish broadcaster SVT is said to be turning a blind eye to an act who has already blabbed about his participation in Melodifestivalen 2020. The provocative performer Thorsten Flinck is said to still be part of the 2020 lineup, despite publicly confirming his participation with a local newspaper.
Flinck made the announcement earlier this week as part of an interview with the Swedish newspaper TTELA. He told the paper, “I will be participating in Melodifestivalen, but I can’t say more than that.”
But even confirming participation in Melodifestivalen before the official announcement is against SVT’s strict rules. The broadcaster is considered to take their rules seriously, in order to not give any artist an advantage over others.
However, it appears SVT are turning a blind eye of Thorsten Flinck’s rule break. The broadcaster is said to want Thorsten to be part of Mello 2020 so he won’t receive anything more than a telling off.
Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet reports that one of their sources sighed and said, “Some other artist could definitely have been disqualified. What is okay for some is not allowed for others.”
The paper also speculates that the rules — which say SVT will publish the confirmed names in “October-November 2019” — potentially give enough leeway for Thorsten’s news to be considered an official announcement in that period.
The rule was last tested in 2006, when Swedish Idol winner Agnes Carlsson was disqualified from Melodifestivalen 2007. Prior to the reveal date, she had spoken about her participation with media and had given information about the songwriting team.
At the time, this was deemed a serious breach of the Melodifestivalen rules. Agnes and her song “More than a Girl” were disqualified from the contest. She was replaced by Måns Zelmerlöw, who went on to place third with “Cara mia”.
Thorsten Flinck is an actor and musician, with a career spanning over 40 years. He is known for playing villains, but also for his outrageous personality off-stage.
He made his Melodifestivalen debut in 2012, performing with his group Revolutionsorkestern. They placed eighth in the grand final with the song “Jag reser mig igen” (I Rise Again).
Thorsten Flinck will be joined at Melodifestivalen 2020 by Anna Bergendahl, Robin Bengtsson, Anis don Demina, Drängarna, Linda Bengtzing, Frida Öhrn, Paul Rey, Albin, Suzi P, The Mamas, Victor Crone, Hanna Ferm, Jakob Karlberg and P4 Nästa wildcard winner Amanda Aasa. Eric Saade and Carola are two acts still being chased by the broadcaster.
SVT is expected to reveal the lucky 28 competing acts of Melodifestivalen 2020 sometime later this month.
What do you think? Should SVT be strict with their rules? Who else would you like to see in the 2020 lineup? Tell us your thoughts below!