It’s the iconic music festival that’s older than Eurovision. But the Sanremo Music Festival is also based in Italy, a country that has been hit hard by the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. And that’s led Sanremo producers to postpone the 2021 festival by a few weeks.
Optimagazine reports that Sanremo 2021 is likely to take place in late February or early March 2021 — later than its usual spot in early February. The magazine says the new dates were confirmed by broadcaster RAI, who recently released their schedule of upcoming programmes.
If Italy again uses Sanremo to select its act for Eurovision, it will likely need to have the act selected before the EBU’s deadline in early March. However, if Sanremo 2021 takes place after this deadline, broadcaster RAI could internally select a different act for Eurovision — or given the unique circumstances this season, the EBU may be more flexible with dates.
It remains to be seen what, if any, changes will be made to Sanremo 2021. One possibility is holding the event without an audience or moving to a smaller venue.
The magazine notes that people play a large part in the feel of Sanremo, from the audience in the iconic Ariston Theatre, the Sanremo orchestra, the press, and the thousands of tourists who visit the seaside resort town during the event.
Amadeus is back for Sanremo 2021
One thing confirmed for Sanremo 2021 is that Amedeo “Amadeus” Sebastiani will return as the show host and artistic director.
Amadeus has already been spotted hard at work with the Sanremo 2021 production team. The team members were recently seen wearing face masks and practising social distancing as they planned the 2021 show.
Amadeus had previously said he would have to consider doing Sanremo for a second time. However, as he explained in April, Sanremo 2021 isn’t a regular year. Being the first edition of the show in the era of the coronavirus, in many ways it would be his first time.
Amadeus is expected to again be joined on stage by the comedian and showman Rosario Fiorello. The two entertainers brought their unique comedic stylings to Sanremo 2020, including a 20-minute segment in the grand final where they entertained the audience by improvising with an autotune microphone at one o’clock in the morning.
What do you think? When should Sanremo 2021 be held? Would it feel the same without an audience? Tell us your thoughts below!