Lithuania‘s broadcaster has announced the acts that will compete in the 2021 edition of the national final Pabandom iš naujo. The slimmed-down lineup will feature 23 acts, including 2020 winners The Roop, viral act Twosome and Lithuania’s Eurovision 2014 star Vilija Matačiūnaitė with her project Sunday Afternoon.

Unlike previous editions of the Lithuanian national final, which saw more than 50 acts competing over as many as ten shows, this year Pabandom iš naujo will involve just 23 acts and four shows. The 2021 edition will have two heats, one semi-final and a grand final.

LRT Producer Audrius Giržadas said that despite concern that this year’s contest may not have attracted many entries, they have been pleased with the numbers. He explained:

“Every year, the selections receive a lot of public attention. However, knowing how difficult this period was for the music industry, we anxiously awaited the applications from the participants. We are very pleased that the performers and groups did not run away and, considering the whole situation, were quite active in submitting applications. So we will be able to delight the audience with really high-quality and different performances during the selections.”

The competing acts were selected by a panel of specialists from LRT. They aimed to assess the “originality of the work, the quality of the performance and the potential to compete on the big stage of Eurovision.”

The final 23 were also selected to showcase a diverse range of acts and to reflect modern Lithuanian music.

The Roop returns

As confirmed last month, 2020 winners The Roop will return for another shot at Eurovision. The group were guaranteed a place in the Pabandom iš naujo grand final. The trio previously expressed excited for their 2021 entry, saying “We have a song and we have a vision. Let’s hope it will become Euro-vision.”

Also on the lineup is 2020 viral act Twosome. While their 2020 entry “Playa” did not make the grand final, it became a breakout hit, with its catchy lyric “I’m a Lithuanian basketball player”. This year the group also competed on a celebrity edition of X Factor Lithuania where they finished fourth.

Lithuania’s Eurovision 2014 star Vilija Matačiūnaitė is also returning to the national final. She’ll perform as her new music project Sunday Afternoon.

Gabrielius Vagelis will also be part of the 2021 lineup. He’s been a regular at Pabandom iš naujo in recent years. Last year he competed with “Tave čia randu”.

Pabandom iš naujo 2021 – Competing acts

  • Aistė Brokenleg
  • Aldegunda
  • Be U
  • Black Spikes“ with Indre Launikonyte
  • Donata Virbilaitė
  • Evelina Sašenko
  • Evita Cololo
  • Gabrielė Goštautaitė
  • Gabrielius Vagelis
  • Gebrasy (Audrius Petrauskas)
  • Gintarė Korsakaitė
  • Martyna Jezepčikaitė
  • Milita Daikerytė
  • Cosmic bride (Natalja Chareckaja)
  • Norbertas/Norbė
  • Rapolas Meškauskas
  • Sunday Afternoon (Vilija Matačiūnaitė)
  • The Roop
  • Thomas Tumosa
  • Titas ir Benas
  • Twosome
  • UnoBand
  • Voldemaras Petersonas

Pabandom iš naujo 2021 is due to begin on Saturday 19 January.

What do you think of the Pabandom iš naujo 2021 lineup? Who would you like to see represent Lithuania at Eurovision 2021? Tell us your thoughts below!

Read more Lithuania Eurovision news here

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blueeyed
blueeyed
24 days ago

Oh God. They’re all bad except for The Roop. They should just send The Roop without a selection.

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
23 days ago
Reply to  blueeyed

There’s a part of me that wishes the Roop would just be internally selected, but that’s less my personal feelings and more based on the pandemic affecting Lithuania, where there’s been a major increase in cases. It’s gotten so bad in Lithuania that it’s been reported to be one of the worst hit European countries in recent weeks (at least that’s my impression–Lithuanian esc fans, can you chime in please). I almost question holding a selection when it might not be safe enough to do it, depending on what happens between now and the first scheduled heat. Maybe things could… Read more »

Jamie
Jamie
22 days ago
Reply to  Badwoolfgirl

Yep, it’s bad. We are leading in Europe in cases per population. But I don’t think the national final will get cancelled, as this is the only show that brings LRT (the broadcaster) the most revenue. And yes, LRT would totally position money over health, as they have been casually doing for the whole year and didn’t cancel a single show. The NF will happen. Without the audience of course.

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
21 days ago
Reply to  Jamie

I wonder how it got so bad in Lithuania regarding COVID. This explosion just seems so recent. I hope things get better, and put it in perspective, no matter how bad your country is hit, be lucky you’re not living in America where I’m from–to say we dropped the ball on the virus is a massive understatement.

I wonder if the performances will be prerecorded in batches depending on person limits and then they air at once on the days of the national final.

Jamie
Jamie
20 days ago
Reply to  Badwoolfgirl

The show won’t be much different from last year – recorded in the middle of the week and aired on Saturday. The performances were prerecorded in batches anyways, so no changes here.

Saulius
Saulius
24 days ago

Hi I’m Lithuanian and I can’t stand Lithuanian music. But the Roop was very different and original. Lithuanians music are copied from Russians trash and western countries. And so many of them can’t sing, just making music in the recording studio and fix’s with computer and after just miming on the stage. Just small group of music artists can name him self proper musician and so many of them work with international artists in Scandinavian, England, Germany, and in Lithuanian just left country side trash. Sorry I was very very hash, but this is reality

Jamie
Jamie
22 days ago
Reply to  Saulius

This would be totally true 15-20 years ago. You’re a bit late now, sir. Total nonsense.

Joey
Joey
24 days ago

What about Evelina Sašenko who competed at ESC2011 with “C’est ma vie”?

Saulius
Saulius
24 days ago
Reply to  Joey

But you she just somewhere gon like the artist , and you can’t hear about her work and life like a musician and artist

Nini Kiwini
Nini Kiwini
24 days ago

Not that many artists i know, although its always good to see new faces.
Kinda sad that Evelina was forgotten in the article.

At this point its too early to call the victor, but since the roop is already qualified and has a huge following, i would say that they have a great chance of a second victory.

Nicky
Nicky
25 days ago

who cares, such a boring nf, would’ve been better to just internally select The Roop

Jamie
Jamie
24 days ago
Reply to  Nicky

Boring if you’ve last seen it years ago, yes. Last year’s rebranded PIN was shockingly good.

Leafar
Leafar
24 days ago
Reply to  Jamie

I agree ! From the staging to the camera shots, it was surprisingly good !

Kosey
Kosey
25 days ago

I’m looking forward to Brokenleg returning – they had a quirky song last year and hope they go for something similarly bold this year too.

Alex
Alex
25 days ago

Evelina Sasenko doesn’t even get a mention?

Gemini
Gemini
25 days ago

I’m really excited, especially to see Gabrielus and The Roop return. The Lithuanian preselection always feels like such a weird fever dream to me and I’m here for it!

John the Go
25 days ago

So excited for this!

Tom
Tom
25 days ago

So Ieva and Monique will no competing 😀 thanks god ( i love them, but The Roop should win !!)

Darius
Darius
25 days ago
Reply to  Tom

Monique said she’s done with Eurovision forever.

sam
sam
25 days ago
Reply to  Darius

if she really said that then i’m glad she’s done. i adored her and her song but if she has an attitude like that she has no right to represent lithuania ever

Jamie
Jamie
24 days ago
Reply to  sam

Ummm… I don’t know why you think that way. She has no attitude at all. Barely advertised her song, barely gave any interviews, did not cry or complain after losing like some participants did. She’s just very young, maybe that’s why it came across that way for you.

Tomas
Tomas
24 days ago
Reply to  Darius

Tu neiteisus. Ji jau turi eurovizine daina tik su ja eis i atranka kitamet greiciausiai. Bikus sake parase jai jau daina

Last edited 24 days ago by Tomas
Héctor
Héctor
25 days ago

Yessss! Gabrielius is in. “Tave cia randu” deserved much much better. The staging was a mess though.

Tibor
Tibor
25 days ago

Do we already know when the songs will drop? Will it be like last year when they were just published on the fly? Because I will not join into the bitching as long as I haven’t heard any of the songs.

Sabrina
Sabrina
25 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

This year, things were messy. If I’m not mistaken, Monique’s studio version was released weeks after we already knew the song.

Last edited 25 days ago by Sabrina
Tibor
Tibor
25 days ago
Reply to  Sabrina

This year was complete chaos, it was practically impossible to know when what song would drop, there was no site where you could listen to all the songs, it was a mess. They should just skip the heats and put the organizing power into a neat releasing process instead.

Colin
Colin
25 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

In a way, it made me always alert. 🙂 I found both good and bad sides to that kind of release process. At least they had one, unlike Dora. 🙁

Darius
Darius
25 days ago
Reply to  Tibor

Lithuania never releases songs, they get revealed as the show progresses. Only 2 heats so it ain’t that bad of a wait.

Tibor
Tibor
24 days ago
Reply to  Darius

Yeah, I know, that’s what I meant: They should figure out a process to release the songs more comprehensibly or at least create a site with all the contestants, so you don’t have to google them anew every day. 🙂

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
25 days ago

My prediction over how the contestants will be broken up:

11 per heat, with 5 or 6 qualifying
12 in the semi-final, with 6 or 7 qualifying
7 or 8 in the final including the Roop.

Is that about right?

Vytautas
Vytautas
25 days ago
Reply to  Badwoolfgirl

I really see no logic in bringing heats when you have only 23 acts. We will get 11 acts per heat (because The Roop has a guaranteed place in the semi-final, thus, they skip heats for qualification), some number (7-8?) of performances per 2 semi-finals, and the grand final. Ridiculous. They should have made it so there are 2 semi-finals wherein the first one there are 11 songs and in the second one there are 12 songs. Each semi-final would give 5 places in the grand final and the GF would consist of 10 songs. 3 shows in total instead… Read more »

Matthew
Matthew
25 days ago

A shame that you mentioned twosome returning in the article but not Evelina Sasenko who represented Lithuania in 2011 and won her semifinal jury vote.

Vytautas
Vytautas
25 days ago

As predicted – a very weak national selection. Due to the fact that the Roop was very successful last year, many major names decide not to try. Sad, really. I was hoping for some big names such as GJan, Monique, Jazzu, or Justinas Jarutis. Oh well, let’s have this circus for now as the winner is already crystal clear. Love from Lithuania.

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
25 days ago
Reply to  Vytautas

I don’t know, somebody else could win. You never know, and sometimes I’ve side-eyed certain choices winning over the wins (*ahem* 2017 and 2019).

Vytautas
Vytautas
25 days ago
Reply to  Badwoolfgirl

I guess. Anyways, if I were to bid my $100, I would go for: $70 The Roop (they really need just a decent song to win) $10 Milita (simply because I know what a strong voice she has so if her ballad is anything as close as “Only Love Can Hurt Like This”, she might become the major opposition to the Roop) $10 Evita (a song “Nesupainiot/10 laimiu” is having this teen-vibe which limits her chances to do well in all age groups) $10 Gabrielius (a song “Salia” is pretty weak, bonus for cutting hair, he has yet to work… Read more »

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
25 days ago

All right, we’ve got our participants and a schedule. I just realized that based on the calendar, the final will happen on February 6th, which happens to be my birthday! Wouldn’t it be cool if the Roop win again, but I want to be open minded about other entrants in case somebody else wins. I see we’ve got a shorter schedule, probably due to the pandemic, but I hope everything goes well. Speaking of the pandemic though, for my all excitement and well wishes, I can’t help but be a little worried about Lithuania during the coronavirus pandemic. I was… Read more »

Una
Una
25 days ago

Great news from Lithuania!! Shows start in less than a month. Such a treat. I am looking forward to listening to everyone’s songs. Good luck everyone!!

Last edited 25 days ago by Una
xohxoh
xohxoh
25 days ago

Chile, the clownery! Just send The Roop. At least it’s only 4 shows (still too long for this awful line-up).

DangeESC
DangeESC
25 days ago

What a weak line-up. No big names except for The Roop. Lithuania should be grateful they decided to try again! They worked with Universal Music on their new song so I have big hopes.

Last edited 25 days ago by DangeESC
Frisian esc
Frisian esc
25 days ago

It sucks so hard that in the very first year that they had 1st place in the odds that eurovision got cancelled.. hope they get their win soon.

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
25 days ago
Reply to  Frisian esc

If the Roop have a strong successor song and they win the national final again, Lithuania could have a chance.

zheng
zheng
25 days ago

Evelina Sasenko is back too

Jamie
Jamie
25 days ago
Reply to  zheng

Trying to find someone who cares lol

zheng
zheng
25 days ago
Reply to  Jamie

Hahahaha

Joe
Joe
25 days ago

I’m not gonna front and pretend that even if the other participants bring brilliant songs, Im not 100% rooting for The Roop.

Colin
Colin
25 days ago

I am just really happy to have Twosome back again. I am looking forward to something quirky. Hopefully it will be as entertaining as Playa or Hello.

I expected the Roop to be back, but it’s nice to have a confirmation. I hope their new song is as interesting as their last one.

While I wasn’t necessarily a big fan of Attention, I see Vilija as a charismatic performer and I hope she’ll deliver. Evelina Sašenko, what a vocal! And Gabrielius is back too!

Looking forward to it, for sure! 🙂

DangeESC
DangeESC
25 days ago
Reply to  Colin

Twosome? Oh no.

Ashton
Ashton
25 days ago

Very excited for The Roop (obviously) and Gabrielius Vagelis (Tave Cia Randu was massively underrated in Pabandom Is Naujo and deserved better). The rest I don’t really have any expectations, but I’m willing to be impressed and also discover more Lithuanian talent!

Nicky
Nicky
25 days ago
Reply to  Ashton

Gabrielius for esc2022 then

Whisker
Whisker
25 days ago

I think that I’m on fire!!!!!!!!

Jamie
Jamie
25 days ago

What an effortless win for The Roop. I’m Lithuanian and this by far the WEAKEST list of all time. Half of the participants are Xfactor Lithuania participants, and not even the good ones. Thank God this freakshow is only 4 shows, otherwise I would be bored to death.

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
25 days ago
Reply to  Jamie

How can we judge if this is going to be a weak national selection if the songs aren’t released yet? I’d hold off judging until the songs are out.

Jamie
Jamie
25 days ago
Reply to  Badwoolfgirl

I know all of them and their capabilities. Trust me, there won’t be any good songs from the majority of this lineup. They are just fillers. Out of 24 artists I can only see 3 that could actually bring some competition for The Roop: Gabrielius Vagelis, Evita Cololo and Milita Daikeryte. And that says it all.

Badwoolfgirl
Badwoolfgirl
25 days ago
Reply to  Jamie

You think this is rigged just to let the Roop win again? By that logic, why not just internally select them instead of saddling them with weaker competitors as you say they are?

Una
Una
25 days ago
Reply to  Badwoolfgirl

I would assume that other artists did not want to compete against The Roop. Even though it’s just recently that their participation was confirmed. That would make more sense. The Roop are already a huge fan-favourite. They will most likely bring something as banngingg as “On Fire” was and meet the expectations of national and international fandom. These guys were so big in 2020. It’s amazing to see.

Jamie
Jamie
25 days ago
Reply to  Badwoolfgirl

Literally did not say that it’s “rigged”. As Una already mentioned, bigger artists did not bother to compete with The Roop as they are the elephant in the room. So the broadcaster filled the selection with a mediocre lineup out of desperation. I actually predicted this happening when Eurovision was cancelled and The Roop were not given a free ticket to Rotterdam.