When the full line-up for the national final Eurovision: Australia Decides was released earlier this week, fans were surprised that 2019 runners-up Electric Fields were not on the list. Now Australia’s Head of Delegation and national final producer Paul Clarke has explained why the electronic duo didn’t return.

In an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald, Clarke explained that while Electric Fields were invited back for 2020, the group felt that this time they didn’t have the right song for the contest.

But, as Clarke told the paper, that’s OK. “It’s alright to have a year off, have a think about it and then come back.”

Clarke also spoke about what the Australian delegation had learned from their 2019 entry. Kate Miller-Heidke’s “Zero Gravity” was tipped as a possible winner of Eurovision 2019 but finished in ninth place.

Clarke had nothing but praise for Kate Miller-Heidke’s performance but said that an Australian popera song might not have appealed enough to European audiences.

He explained, “For a lot of Europeans, they turn to Australia for what is new and what is different. I think they felt they already had opera. That opera is something that comes from Europe.”

But Clark has faith in the 2020 lineup of Australia Decides. He even reckons the show has “four, five, maybe six people that could win the competition this year” and give Australia its first Eurovision win.

Eurovision: Australia Decides 2020 – competing artists

The ten competing artists of Eurovision: Australia Decides 2020 are pop diva Casey Donovan, The Voice winner Diana Rouvas, folk musician Didirri, alternative singer-songwriter iOTA, Australia’s Got Talent winner Jack Vidgen, multimedia artist Jaguar Jonze, newcomer singer-songwriter Jordan-Ravi, Indigenous artist Mitch Tambo, art-pop auteur Montaigne and pop legend Vanessa Amorosi.

Jack Vidgen has already released his competing song “I Am King I Am Queen”. Casey Donovan will perform a song titled “Proud”, Diana Rouvas will have “Can We Make Heaven”, Jaguar Jonze will take viewers down a “Rabbit Hole”, and Jordan-Ravi will be “Pushing Stars”. Vanessa Amorosi will enter one of the track from her new album Back to Love.

While the running order for the February grand final hasn’t been confirmed, Clarke says that the show will likely be opened by singer-songwriter iOTA. “We’re going to do something as absolutely off the wall as what we did with Kate. It’ll be dangerous. People watch Eurovision for the spectacle. Having an artist like iOTA in the competition is a licence for mischief.”

The grand final of Eurovision – Australia Decides will screen on Saturday 8 February at 19:30 AEST (10:30 CET).

What do you think? Who do you think will win Australia Decides 2020? Who could give Australia its first Eurovision win? Tell us your thoughts below!

Read more Australia Eurovision news here!

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Preuss
Preuss
6 months ago

If five out of ten contestants are possible winners of Eurovision, then bring it on. I don’t know if it’s arrogance or somehow the truth in his claim though :p Their HoD is very diplomatic in his answer about why Kate didn’t do better with the audience, but from my perception, he only subtle hints to the fact that Australia would’ve done better with the public if it wasn’t done under Australia’s name, which I agree about. Not because I think there’s an overwhelming amount out there who won’t vote for Australia because it’s Australia, but because of the advantage… Read more »

Joe
Joe
6 months ago
Reply to  Preuss

*Finland and Lithuania

Preuss
Preuss
6 months ago
Reply to  Joe

Yes, thanks! My bad

Joe
Joe
6 months ago
Reply to  Preuss

It’s a funny thing, right? Time was, in the ’00s, diaspora combined with low viewing figures meant a whole load of songs were punching above their weight in the televote. Now they’re a lot more fickle, either because more people are watching unbiasedly and outweighing the neighbor/diaspora votes or even neighbors can only take so much of a mediocre song. I don’t know precise viewing figures for, say, Germany between 2008 and 2019, but there’s gotta be some kind of shift when you consider their top two in 2008 (12 to Greece, 10 to Turkey, both of whom frequently were… Read more »

Joe
Joe
6 months ago
Reply to  Joe

Speaking of: I’m gonna throw the next person who says Turkish diaspora gave San Marino a boost out the window. Think about which countries voted for Turkey all the time in the ’00s (I’m thinking UK, Germany, Switzerland, France, Belgium, Netherlands, and Austria) and have a gander at how high their televotes ranked them in the final (almost all bottom five, three of them put it dead-last, including France, who had Turkey in their top two literally every year between 2003 and 2010, and the Netherlands was the only one that even came close to giving it a vote).

James
James
6 months ago
Reply to  Joe

We also have to take into account the Gunsmoke Rule: What is considered good ratings from 10 years ago may not be the case 10 years later, especially how fractured live viewing has become this days with the onset of delayed viewing and streaming that has impactedthe way viewing figures are measured.

While it’s nice to know that the contest is still getting hundreds of millions of views on linear TV alone, the figures could be even higher with streaming alone and on international cable channels for those watching from overseas.

Joe
Joe
6 months ago
Reply to  Preuss

Well, it’s funny, since sometimes the same countries that’ll support their neighbors in a good year will drop them like a dead fish if they aren’t up to snuff the next year. Look at the Czech Republic, who (undeservedly) tanked with the televote this year. In 2018, they got two top marks from Austria and Israel’s televotes. Not overly surprising, considering Austria is geographically and culturally close while Israel has a decent Czech diaspora and good cultural ties. This year? Austria’s televote put them 18th and Israel’s put them 15th. They’re fickle. Same for Germany! The Netherlands and Denmark were… Read more »

Quinto
Quinto
6 months ago

Don’t know the songs yet but already feel that they should send Mitch Tambo, his music sounds really interresting and he could bring something unique 🙂

Loin dici
6 months ago

He could be right that Eurovision might not need a popera, but I feel that there aren’t any real recipes on making a Eurovision winner. Some days it could be a standard pop-rock ballad, some days it could be a Mizrahi banger, or a lush 50s-60s jazz ballad, or an uncomfortable dark pop. If he believes in 4-6 songs being potential winners, let him believe.

Joe
Joe
6 months ago
Reply to  Loin dici

It also says a lot that Australia made top ten with both the juries AND the televote this year for the first time since 2016. Also the first time they got top marks from anyone since 2016.

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
6 months ago

4-6 possible Eurovision winners out of 10 entries?
You had, what, *maybe* one last year? I’d be surprised if the quality’s gone up THAT much. I’m optimistic about the selection but let’s be realistic.

Jack
Jack
6 months ago

Four five six seven eight. Bjorkman of Australia needs to calm down because Jessica was also tipped as a winner and we all know how this ended up

Paul
Paul
6 months ago
Reply to  Jack

Unfairly so with Jessica!

destroy1234
destroy1234
6 months ago
Reply to  Jack

To be fair, Jessica’s entry is not so strong as her usual song

OhhHoney
OhhHoney
6 months ago

“four, five, maybe six people that could win the competition this year” HAHAHHAHAHAHAHHA. We haven’t heard the songs but we know that’s a far reach.

Joe
Joe
6 months ago
Reply to  OhhHoney

It also feels like a lot, but I dunno. Judging based on last year and this year’s lineup, he may not be entirely exaggerating.

Mr Vanilla Bean
6 months ago

Australia 2019 had enough appeal to both televoters and juries to make it into the top 10, which is respectable. Taking a leap with such great execution is always better than playing it safe.

Mary
Mary
6 months ago

I think he’s right. Kate was great, but Australia must come with something that is new for Europe, the way that balkan ballads were brought by Eastern Europe.