Last month Belarus broadcaster BTRC confirmed that electropop duo VAL would not receive the return ticket to Rotterdam. Now the broadcaster has opened submissions for its 2021 Eurovision entry. But this year Belarus won’t be holding its iconic live auditions — and the broadcaster hasn’t confirmed how the winning act will be selected.
In a news broadcast on Belarus-1, BTRC announced that singers and bands of up to six people have an opportunity to submit their songs to the broadcaster’s website until 31 January.
However, the hopefuls cannot just submit a polished studio recording. Rather, the Belarusian broadcaster is asking them to submit live performances of their songs in order to gauge the talent on offer.
With that, BTRC is axing its legendary live auditions. From 2015 to 2020, Belarus’ Eurovision hopefuls had to perform their songs live at a BTRC studio, which was also live-streamed to the outside world.
As the broadcaster let all applicants audition, over the years fans have witnessed a good variety of musical acts from Belarus. Ranging from local village choirs to garage rock bands to one man once bringing in his real-life goose, the Belarusian live auditions brought endless joy to Eurovision fans throughout its era of existence.
How will Belarus select its act for Eurovision 2021?
After the submission window is closed, a small panel made up of experts will decide on the fate of the potential entries. Due to the current pandemic, the broadcaster reports that the format of the selection is still up in the air. This might mean that there could be no national final at all.
For their Junior Eurovision selection, Belarus went internal for the first time in that contest’s history. But for selecting their Eurovision entry, Belarus has only gone internal twice before, in 2010 and 2011.
Additionally, the Belarusian edition of the Sputnik news agency reports that both Belarusian and non-Belarusian citizens are allowed to submit entries. All entrants can only send in one song.
What do you think? How should Belarus select their act for Rotterdam? Who would you like to see entering the national final? Tell us your thoughts below!