Croatia‘s broadcaster HRT has opened entries for the upcoming edition of its national final, DORA 2021. And there are some changes to the contest rules. This season, HRT is taking its cue from the new rules of Eurovision 2021 and will not allow live backing singers to be used in a DORA performance.
The rules for DORA 2021 come with a number of changes that are mostly a reaction to the Covid-19 pandemic.
HRT has made it clear that live backing vocals will not be allowed in a DORA performance. This is inspired by the rule change to Eurovision 2021, which allows competing acts to use pre-recorded backing vocals if they wish. HRT is taking it one step further and making recorded backing vocals compulsory for DORA acts — and for the winning act who ends up going to Eurovision.
However, up to five people are still allowed to be on stage at DORA as part of the performance. This is one fewer than the six that are allowed in a Eurovision performance.
As well, this year’s contest will involve 14 competing acts, two down from the 16 that competed in the grand final of DORA 2020. There will also be four reserves in case any acts need to be replaced. The competing acts will be selected by an expert jury.
While DORA is still only open to Croatian citizens, performers can now sing in any European language. Previously lyrics were restricted to Croatian, English, Italian, German and French. But singers can belt out their tune in Icelandic, Ukrainian, Luxembourgish,Greek or indeed any other language of Europe.
“A quality and interesting Dora 2021”
DORA’s Project Manager Uršula Tolj also says that in future editions, HRT is aiming to open submissions earlier, at the beginning of October. The aim is to give artists a little more time to prepare their DORA entries.
But she was also confident at getting a good response to this season’s edition, saying, “I believe that the musicians will respond in large numbers and that we will have a quality and interesting Dora 2021.”
DORA 2021 is due to take place on 13 February 2021 in the Croatian seaside resort town of Opatija. HRT is also formulating different scenarios that should allow DORA to go ahead no matter what the Covid situation is when the national final is due to take place.
The 2020 winner Damir Kedžo has not been given an automatic place in the contest, but HRT has said he is welcome to enter again.
Entries for DORA 2021 are now open and will close on 10 December 2020. Applications can be made via HRT.
What do you think? Will DORA be the same with no live backing vocals? Who would you like to see represent Croatia in Rotterdam? Tell us your thoughts below!