Several weeks ago, Ukraine’s public broadcaster UA:PBC (Suspilne) announced that its Eurovision partnership with commercial broadcaster STB had been ended. This essentially meant the end to Vidbir — the country’s popular Eurovision selection — as we knew it. However, Suspilne will continue with its own selection show from February 2022 onwards.
Ukraine’s new Eurovision selection in 2022
In a short statement on the broadcaster’s official Instagram account, Suspilne acknowledged that it will hold a national final without any other broadcaster’s participation.
Earlier, commercial channel 1+1 — responsible for the country’s adaption of The Voice — had stated its interest in co-hosting.
With the announcement, Suspilne also noted that conflicting views about the future of Vidbir was what ultimately ended the partnership.
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Between 8 and 24 October, production companies can submit their bids for the upcoming edition of the new national final as part of a tender. Companies must outline their staging concept as well as provide an estimate of approximate costs.
The show itself will start no later than 12 February, and the broadcaster plans to have its entry selected and their music video filmed no later than 4 March 2022. Among the other details that Suspilne has announced is that the show’s outcome will be decided by a combination of a jury vote and televote.
The end of Ukraine’s commercial and public partnership
Between 2016 and 2022, Ukraine’s Eurovision selection was decided a partnership between the commercial (STB) and public broadcaster (Suspilne). This began after Ukraine withdrew from Eurovision 2015 as a result of financial strain and military conflict in the east of the country. STB invested heavily in the format, loaning materials and people from the production team behind X Factor Ukraine.
Vidbir quickly attracted household names as well as talented new acts. With its in-house panel of judges, most notably Andriy “Verka Serduchka” Danylko, the show gained domestic traction as no previous Eurovision selection had before.
Before the partnership and show were officially canned, doubts were already in the air that the national selection would continue in its existing form. After all, the collaboration agreement with the commercial broadcaster ended after Eurovision 2021. Back in March, the show’s musical producer Ruslan Kvinta announced his withdrawal too.
On top of that, Suspilne enjoyed an increase in their budget this year, which meant that they could cover most of the costs relating to Eurovision by themselves for the first time since 2014.
Are you excited for Ukraine’s new Eurovision 2022 selection? Who would you like to see compete in it? Let us know in the comments down below!