On Saturday 13 February, WAHL feat. SAMI will compete in Melodifestivalen 2021 with “90-talet”. They’ll perform third in semi-final two and their fate remains unknown. However, according to OGAE Sweden, the duo will have achieved one milestone simply by stepping on stage — they’ll become the contest’s 1,000th entry.
WAHL feat. SAMI’s “90-talet” will be Melodifestivalen’s 1000th entry
As of today, 9 February, Melodifestivalen has paid host to 997 entries. On Saturday, Anton Ewald’s “New Religion” will be 998, Julia Alfrida’s “Rich” will be 999 and then comes the headline figure — entry number 1,000 in the form of WAHL feat. SAMI’s “90-talet”. This milestone has been a long time coming. Melodifestivalen first took place in 1959. It has been held every year since, with the exception of 1964, 1970 and 1976.
OGAE Sweden’s Peter Baston admits that counting the entries wasn’t as straightforward as people might think. “It depends how you count ’59 and ’60 when the semi-finals were heard on the radio months before the final”, he says. “But a team of the club’s most ardent fans and a number of outside experts have independently come to the same conclusion. We can confirm that the 1000th entry will be heard this week”.
The count has accelerated significantly over the last two decades. Prior to 2002, when Melfest was only a one-night affair, just over 400 entries had competed in Sweden’s Eurovision selection show. That figure quickly ballooned with the introduction of the semi-finals and the six-week format we know today.
A number of entries have been excluded from the count. Disqualified songs have not been considered. So, yet again, Anna Book finds herself being left out. Her 2016 entry “Himmel för två” was famously removed from the competition after it transpired that the song had previously been entered in Moldova’s selection a few years earlier. Sweden’s first-ever Eurovision entry has also been omitted. Both Alice Babs and “Lilla Stjärna” were internally selected in 1958.
Are you excited to hear the 1,000th entry? Will WAHL feat. SAMI’s “90-talet” deliver? Let us know in the comments.