Photo: TVM

Get ready for a night of music and perennial advertisements. Maltese broadcaster PBS has announced that Malta Eurovision Song Contest (MESC) will return as the country’s national selection format for Eurovision 2022.

The show returns after four years, having last been used in 2018.

Malta to use MESC for Eurovision 2022

In an announcement on Friday, Malta’s Public Broadcasting Services revealed it would be bringing back Malta Eurovision Song Contest for 2022.

The winner of this national final will go on to represent Malta at Eurovision 2022, which will be held in Turin, Italy.

Maltese television network TVM has also revealed that MESC 2022 will consist of semi-finals and a grand final. A total of 22 songs will take part in the semi-finals, with 16 then making it through to the grand final.

Acts must be of Maltese nationality or hold Maltese citizenship, however songwriters can be of any nationality.

One act we won’t see in the MESC 2022 is Malta’s 2021 Eurovision star, Destiny Chukunyere. The rules specifically state that “The performer who represented Malta in 2021 may not participate as a performer in the Contest.”

Applications for the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2022 have also been opened. The submission period closes on 15 December.

Malta’s national final history

Malta first staged MESC in 2012 and consistently used it as their national selection for Eurovision through to 2018. Of the seven entries to come from the contest, four managed to qualify to the Eurovision grand final. However, only Gianluca Bezzina managed to score a top-ten placing, in 2013.

The country subsequently mixed things up in 2019 and 2020, instead deciding to select their artist for Eurovision through the newly created X Factor Malta. The song was subsequently chosen internally. This method produced two fan favourites who made it to the grand final of Eurovision: Michela Pace and Destiny. Destiny gave the country its best result in 16 years, coming seventh with “Je me casse” this year.

In June, the Chairman of the Valletta Cultural Agency, Jason Micallef, broke the news that Malta would not use the third edition of X Factor Malta as their selection method for Eurovision 2022.

Mr. Micallef has been linked with Malta’s broadcaster TVM for many years, and he praised the broadcaster’s decision. Writing on Facebook, he said:

“It is a wise decision by the new management of PBS that, with immediate effect, the representation of Malta in the next edition of Eurovision will be through a specially staged festival, and not [be automatically given to] the winner of X Factor Malta. I am convinced that this news will be received with great satisfaction by all Maltese singers, authors and composers”.

The use of X Factor Malta as an artist selection process, with the winner’s song then being chosen internally, was criticised by some in Malta for taking away opportunities for homegrown composers and songwriters.

The return of Malta Eurovision Song Contest will bring back mixed memories for fans. Usually, it was a very long night filled with dramatic ballads, lots of mid-tempo tunes and a bit of Maltese-flavoured pop. The show was well known amongst fans for its zillion sponsors, and the lengthy advert breaks. Anyone remember Hamilton Travel?

Many will also recall how lots of artists kept coming back. Claudia Faniello, for instance, only made it to Eurovision in 2017 after ten attempts in Malta’s national finals.

Are you happy to see the return of MESC for 2022? Who do you hope to see competing in the selection? Let us know in the comments below!

Read more Malta Eurovision news here

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David
David
7 months ago

I hope this will follow the Muzika Muzika format last year with the orchestra and songs in Maltese.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  David

I’m not counting on it.

Bird Lover
Bird Lover
7 months ago

The problem is not the selection but the corrupt people who hijack the selection and the corrupt broadcaster itself. They would NEVER allow an artist to just do their thing and comepte on their own terms. For example having a raw jazz singer just doing jazz, a rock band just doing them (like maneskin), a guitar player just doing what they want on stage. The second you are chosen to represent Malta, you just become a political tool for tourism while they’ll ship off everything to sweden in terms of staging, song etc…and the artist is merely the face. Nothing… Read more »

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago

We’ll, if anyone is following Junior Eurovision, Ike and Kaya will represent Malta with “My Home”.

Polegend Godgarina
7 months ago

welp i think this type of selection is perfect for countries with a solid music industry where artists have access to the best recording facilities and where they can be helped by labels. in malta, where there’s no national recording industry association whatsoever, this is basically impossible, and most of the songs end up sounding like fillers… but we’ll see

Ugnius
Ugnius
7 months ago

Well, Malta is small country so it’s perfectly understandable that they use help from abroad. I mean, Swedish composers are responsible for almost all of their left-side finishes (Chameleon, Je me casse, Walk on Water) and when they use local production they usually are not so successful

On the other hand, local production might be cheaper, so perhaps TVM doesn’t want to spend so much money in 2022 as they did in 2019&2021

Maya G
Maya G
7 months ago
Reply to  Ugnius

This Is the Night and Taboo were also written by Swedes, This Is the Night finished at the bottom and Taboo didn’t even qualify.Tomorrow was written by locals and is the only Maltese song to do well with both the juries and the public since the 50%-50% system was introduced.Malta is small, but Iceland is smaller in population and they do quite well without turning to foreign writers. If the music industry in Malta is indeed underdeveloped, they should use the ESC to help it develop, rather than being Sweden’s Protectorate.If the 2021 contest taught us anything, it’s that authenticity… Read more »

Colin
Colin
7 months ago

Nice. Interested in hearing the lyrics. Some of the 2018’s songs were so funny (probably without intending to be). ”A pack of wolves with a heart of gold”, ”Hop on your rocket ship, and lift off, baby”, ”We call it evolution, when we break through the illusion, we’ll start a revolution”… 🙂 It was entertaining, but I don’t thing that was the point.
To be fair, I still listen to Breathlessly, The Flame, and Breaking Point. So, MESC had its moments. Anyway, good luck, Malta. 🙂

Colin
Colin
7 months ago
Reply to  Colin

Yeah, A Song For Dad is definitely one of the most lovely ones. 🙂

Last edited 7 months ago by Colin
Noel
Noel
7 months ago
Reply to  Colin

I still love the song

Sabrina
Sabrina
7 months ago
Reply to  Colin

My only experience with Maltese finals was 2018 and those lyrics were… well, something. So I’m glad they’ll have a proper selection again, but I don’t know if having 22 songs competing is a good idea. Not even mentioning how weird it is to get 16 of them into the final.

Colin
Colin
7 months ago
Reply to  Sabrina

I agree, 16 songs qualifying in a selection of 22 feels like the semi isn’t even needed, and one long night of 3 hours (or a more selective process of getting there) would’ve been just fine. The number isn’t *that* high, per se (I mean, MGP had 25 last year, and mostly all were at least somewhat nice), but the quality of previous ”fillers” is really not reassuring. At least I hope they’ll be fun fillers, and not dull ones. 🙂

Sabrina
Sabrina
7 months ago
Reply to  Colin

If the intention is to give exposure to more artists, at least they could get to 24 entries, so semis would cut one third of the semifinalists. But I still think it’s a high number for a small country. In 2018, the problem was also that a big part of the entries were very similar between themselves. Let’s hope the selection will be better this time.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  Sabrina

22 songs is a fine number for a national final (unlike say approaching 30), but it should be just 10 or 12 for the grand final. Just Eliminating six songs is too low for a competition.

Sabrina
Sabrina
7 months ago
Reply to  BadWoolfGirl

I guess the closest country in population’s size we have to Malta in Eurovision is Iceland, right? They have a national final with 10 entries. Sure, some countries do finals with more than 20 entries, but they also have bigger music scenes. Maybe they really wanted to keep the same number of songs from 2018, but also really wanted to have semis and that’s how they got to 22. I hope they find good songs, but it will be hard to keep a certain level of quality.

Last edited 7 months ago by Sabrina
BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  Sabrina

The more songs you have competing in as a final, the less consistent the quality is for all of them. Not every song can be a winner, and you need some weak entries for the stronger ones to soar ahead. We’ll see if Malta has another set of strong songs that if any of them one, compete at your vision, or Malta might be risking their first non-qualification since 2018.

Sabrina
Sabrina
7 months ago
Reply to  BadWoolfGirl

Of course not every song can be a winner and I agree that the winners need a bunch of sparrings to make evident how they’re playing in a different league, but I don’t think a sea of non-competitive entries is good for a show or its brand. Let’s hope Malta has a strong final this time, they’ve been showing how they really want to succeed.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  Sabrina

If you thought the lyrics for many Maltese 2018 songs are questionable, you think for a country that has English as an official language that they would’ve had a better handle with English.

Last edited 7 months ago by BadWoolfGirl
Noel
Noel
7 months ago

Can you please send Ira Losco Chaira Amber to the eurovision song contest as all should have won the eurovision song contest

L’oiseau
L’oiseau
7 months ago

What is interesting and surprising is that a regulation has a rule specifically targeting one sole individual, which from what I remember from my law classes, is not very rightful… Having said that, I wonder why they have introduced this clause banning Destiny?… To give a fair chance to others or because she was too much of Diva?… Or both?…

Bart
Bart
7 months ago
Reply to  L’oiseau

Because Destiny already had two years Eurovision 2020/2021 and also junior Eurovision win, it’s fair to say new talent needs to be discovered.

L’oiseau
L’oiseau
7 months ago
Reply to  Bart

Hence, my option 1

Jofty
Jofty
7 months ago
Reply to  L’oiseau

It is not a “new claruse” it has been in place for many years. From memory I think you have to wait three years. For the record I think an immediate return for Destiny would not do her or Malta any good.

Last edited 7 months ago by Jofty
Ashton
Ashton
7 months ago

can’t wait to sit through 20 mediocre mid-tempo songs and 2 genuinely good songs, neither of which will win

Ian
Ian
7 months ago

MESC is one of my fave nfs, they always have some rly decent songs in there.

Nicolas
Nicolas
7 months ago

Well the good thing without Eurovision pressure is that at X-factor Malta 3 producers and juries normally have not already declared the winner before even the auditions started.

Kung Frederik 90
Kung Frederik 90
7 months ago

Off topic but does anybody have news from Cyprus, Austria , United Kingdom and North Macedonia? I worried.

Ian
Ian
7 months ago

Doubt Cyprus is out, they even met w Marvin Dietmann some days ago

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago

I think once the official disperses out and they’re on it, they’ll be fine. I guess they’re just not the ones to publicly admit until it’s official.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago

After a year of predominately (re-) selected artists, the national finals are coming back with a vengeance. I am intrigued Malta is resuming MESC after a four year rest. Let’s hope it all works out next year.

Whisker
Whisker
7 months ago

Can Swedish people apply?

Whisker
Whisker
7 months ago
Reply to  BadWoolfGirl

Aha ahaha ahahaha!

Chessguy99
7 months ago
Reply to  Whisker

IDK, but I’m sure more than half the songs entered will have swedish writers.

L’oiseau
L’oiseau
7 months ago
Reply to  Whisker

LOL!!!

Whisker
Whisker
7 months ago
Reply to  L’oiseau

For sure!

Whisker
Whisker
7 months ago
Reply to  Whisker

I can hear the collective sigh of relief coming from Sweden and from Swedes everywhere.

Eurovision fan
Eurovision fan
7 months ago

I never like when countries choose their representative through talent show. In most cases bad results are guaranteed.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  Eurovision fan

This isn’t a talent show, this is Malta’s national final, unless you’re talking about the X factor

Last edited 7 months ago by BadWoolfGirl
Chessguy99
7 months ago
Reply to  Eurovision fan

Generally the talent show winner is fine. The problem is they are then given some generic Eurovision song bought from a supposed great writer or writing team, usually swedish.

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  Chessguy99

Or worse, the song is actually introduced in the X factor or talent show finale episode and that’s a song they will use for Eurovision. Those kind of songs don’t generally do well your vision, and that’s why I’m actually a little worried about Israel going down this route for 2022.

L’oiseau
L’oiseau
7 months ago
Reply to  BadWoolfGirl

Well it worked for Israel in 2018…

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  L’oiseau

But that’s not how it went down in 2018. Netta won HaKokhav HaBa L’Eurovizion first I’m February 2018 and “Toy” was released in March Where there was time to tailor the song to her. The Israeli songs in contention to represent Israel 2022 Are going to be part of the X factor Israel process itself, and that worries me. they could be generic songs that aren’t Originally composed for particular artists in mind, and there wouldn’t be as much time to really uniquely develop them For the artists assigned to them Before the finale date. Unless there’s going to be… Read more »

Ellen
Ellen
7 months ago
Reply to  Chessguy99

Some of them songs are still good hits. Not as personnal and honest as a self-written song would (sometimes) be, but good anyway. Like ‘Je Me Casse’ and ‘Chameleon’.

Now, for the future Maltese participation at ESC, let’s hope PBS won’t fvck it up with fake bets. That disappointed me so much this year.

Joe
Joe
7 months ago

My hope is that Malta take inspiration from Muzika Muzika and realize that a happy medium between the Maltese language and a contemporary sound is possible (yes, Je Me Casse did well, but I stubbornly maintain that Aiden Cassar’s Nahsseb Fik, staged the way it was and kept in Maltese, would’ve done even better). The more Malta try to sound like everyone else, the less charm they have and the less interesting their entries are.

Joe
Joe
7 months ago
Reply to  Joe

Also worth mentioning that my favorite Maltese entry ever (Tomorrow) came out of this selection so that’s another reason I’m happy it’s back.

Lorenzo
Lorenzo
7 months ago
Reply to  Joe

Completely agree with you. They need fresh stuff and if they take inspiration from that show (both for staging and quality of the songs) they can do even better than this year. Singing in Maltese could be also a nice way to stand out

Jake
Jake
7 months ago

Doesn’t this mean that Destiny will be back as she will enter this contest and she couldn’t really do the same with X Factor?

Jake
Jake
7 months ago
Reply to  Jake

“Imperial era” LOVE THAT!…thank you..guessing this is a Maltese clause and not a ESC clause

L’oiseau
L’oiseau
7 months ago
Reply to  Jake

The question remains if we can consider that Destiny had her imperial era already…

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
7 months ago
Reply to  Jake

I think destiny is done for now with Eurovision. She might return in a few years, but let’s open our hearts and minds to somebody new

Last edited 7 months ago by BadWoolfGirl
Jonzph
Jonzph
7 months ago

HAMILTON TRAVEL <3

Last edited 7 months ago by Jonzph
Lorenzo
Lorenzo
7 months ago

If the song quality is greater than the previous shows, it’s fine to give more people the opportunity to represent their country, otherwise if the same old generic entries are still there, it’s nonsense to retake this selection

ChEs
ChEs
7 months ago
Reply to  Lorenzo

Yeah, they had some poor results using this selection, but let’s take into account that some established artists just couldn’t go through X Factor to represent their country.

Jake
Jake
7 months ago
Reply to  ChEs

Destiny was established, a national treasure and pre-ordained as the winner before even X Factor aired on television. Never really seemed to be an issue.

ChEs
ChEs
7 months ago
Reply to  Jake

Yes, she is a rising star, but she is 19. Do you really think that someone who is 30+ with over 10 years of experience would go through X Factor?

sam
sam
7 months ago

personally, i dont like x factor as a eurovision selection because it is its own standalone show worldwide and is a great victory to win in itself. i understand using it for a couple of years like malta did to give it some publicity but ultimately i think the malta eurovision song contest is the way to go and is the most genuine way to find a representative that the maltese people can be proud of rather than what can do the best at eurovision

Rifki
Rifki
7 months ago

yes, finally. it is because I prefer MESC, as it is again a proper selection (artist+song, a whole package selection), similar to Melodifestivalen, MGP, UMK and Eesti Laul. and I hope it will be held in MFCC, it could be for hosting experience, because who knows, maybe Malta will win next year or in a few years from now.

Last edited 7 months ago by Rifki
lol
lol
7 months ago

not a good idea. mesc usually brings non qualification while x factor gave them 2 in a row since it started

Erasmus
Erasmus
7 months ago
Reply to  lol

yeah like, where’s the logic behind this decision?

Ethan1994
Ethan1994
7 months ago
Reply to  Erasmus

Maybe it’s a copyright thing?

Rifki
Rifki
7 months ago
Reply to  lol

well, at the end it all depends on the song quality, no matter how it is chosen.

mmm
mmm
7 months ago
Reply to  Rifki

I mean there’s quite the possibility we’ll see 90% of the former MESC rejects taking part in the selection with the end result of an average song performed by a locally-popular singer winning