Junior Eurovision 2020 is just around the corner. And, if previous trends continue, it should mean another success story for Spain. But while the Iberian nation accumulates great results at JESC, it’s a completely different story when it comes to Eurovision. Why so?
This disparity is one of the topics EurovisionSpain delved into in a recent interview with Toñi Prieto (RTVE Entertainment director) and Ana María Bordas (Spain’s Head of Delegation).
Their answer goes far beyond the fact that there are more competitors in the May contest.
Why does Spain do better at Junior Eurovision?
Spain has never placed outside the top five at Junior Eurovision.
However, the country’s Eurovision record currently stands at four consecutive bottom-five finishes.
Toñi and Ana María say that Spain uses the same formula now for both contests. They look for the best artist and the best song internally. That certainly worked for Melani Garcia who placed third at JESC 2019.
But it has failed for Eurovision acts like Edurne (2015) and was not explored in Miki (2019), Amaia and Alfred (2018), Manel Navarro (2017) or Barei (2016).
The pair of TV executives appear baffled as to why this might be: “We don’t know why we get those different results. But in either case, we are all-in with every act”.
According to Toñi and Ana María, different factors are at play.
Firstly, there is stronger competition at Eurovision. Secondly, it can be difficult to work with renowned artists and reaching consensus on what song that will compete in Eurovision. However, neither woman forgot the fact that Spain can vote for Spain at the Junior Eurovision.
“We shall not forget that we can vote for our country in the Junior version. But not in the adult one”
This last argument isn’t a new perspective for Ana María Bordas. In 2019 she said that “the Junior Eurovision voting system helps us. There are a lot of different causes, but the voting system at Junior Eurovision favours us”.
The way Spain searches for their Junior act involves an internal and direct selection of the artist, a song review of all the songs received and further editing to make the song great. Next follows the official music video, the staging and other elements such as backing singers, visuals and wardrobe.
This process matches with Melani’s selection, as well as Soleá’s in 2020. It was also used to choose Edurne (2015) and Blas Cantó (2020 and 2021).
Spanish staging issues at Eurovision
But for Melani, the staging –fishing nets draped from the roof to the floor — seemed to work. Nicoline Refsing was in charge. She’d previously worked with countries like Latvia and Australia at Eurovision 2015 and 2016 respectively.
Toñi and Ana María say that they have worked with timing and coordinating all elements at Junior, including content, choreography, staging and camera direction.
We previously reported different factors that might be impacting Spain’s Eurovision results. These included insufficient commitment from RTVE.
Can Spain host Junior Eurovision?
There is already significant buzz building around Spain’s 2020 entry “Palante” by Soleá.
Should Spain win, Toñi and Ana María have no worries about hosting the event.
“We are ready and would love to host the event. Despite being a decision of the RTVE directive, it surely won’t be an inconvenience for us to host it.”
— Eurovision-Spain.com | PrePartyES (@eurospaincom) November 9, 2020
What do you think about the possible reasons for Spain’s better track record at JESC? Let us know below.