Excitement is growing as less than a month remains until the artists competing in the next edition of the historic Sanremo Festival are unveiled.
It’s a particularly important edition because the winner will have to defend the title won by Måneskin last May, representing Italy at the Eurovision 2022, at the PalaOlimpico in Turin.
On Wednesday, December 15, host and artistic director Amadeus will announce the names of the 24 artists competing in Sanremo 2022. This year, in a strike against tradition, there will not be two categories in the competition (Big and Emerging Artists), but only one. This means that everyone will have the chance to fly to Eurovision. Or, given that we’re in Italy, maybe they’ll take a train or bus.
Diehard fans will note that having a single category is not, in fact, a novelty of the Sanremo Festival. The competition for the “Nuove Proposte” debuted in 1984, in the thirty-fourth edition of the Italian kermesse.
Even in 2019, the then artistic director Claudio Baglioni brought only one category on stage. This allowed Mahmood, among the newcomers called to compete directly in the Big section, to win the Festival and then place as runner-up at Eurovision the same year.
If true, the “Soldi” singer will be making an unexpected return to the Ariston Theatre to launch a re-release of his latest album Ghettolimpo, a gold record in Italy, which has obtained less than was expected on the charts.
Among the artists recently seen at Eurovision we find Francesco Gabbani. The hitmaker of “Occidentali’s karma”, and the runner-up in 2020 with “Viceversa“, would return again to the Festival to release his fifth studio album and ensure a good response in terms of sales and visibility.
Also rumoured is Fabrizio Moro, returning as a soloist after his victory with Ermal Meta in 2018, and Nina Zilli, although the possibility for her comeback is only given an outside chance.
Then we talk about Emma Marrone. The now judge of X Factor Italia is far from the splendour of the first half of her career, in which she won certifications every other day. The singer of “La mia città” could try the Sanremo card to push a new album after the failure of her first “best of” release, which went totally unnoticed.
Then there are a number of artists that actually have great public, critical, and sales ratings and would go to the Sanremo Festival to cement their following.
It must be said that the festival, once seen as a stage to revive ailing careers, is now a huge prestige event — it’s enough to consider that the cast of the 2021 edition brought total sales of albums and singles released with the contest to two million.
Among these names are the exponents of the Italian rap-trap wave Blanco and Rkomi.
Blanco is only 18 years old. He is considered to be the revelation of the year with his debut album Blu celeste, the number-one hits “La canzone nostra” and “Mi fai impazzire” and the track that gives the title to the project.
Rkomi already has several years of experience and records behind him. This year he reached the top of the charts for the third time with the triple platinum album Taxi driver, driven by the hits “Partire da te“, “Nuovo range” and “Luna piena“.
A name that would catalyze great attention is that of Elisa. The singer is a power house of Italian music, on the crest of a wave amid almost thirty years of her career, with a discography full of hits, in both English and Italian.
The artist would return to Sanremo twenty-one years after her victory with “Luce (Tramonti a nord-est)“. Undoubtedly her presence in the race would lead bookmakers to consider her the possible winner with very low odds. But, as always, the public and juries will have the last word after listening to the songs.
Giusy Ferreri and Dolcenera seem to have one foot already at the festival.
The former has released several summer hits in recent years — like the recent “Shimmy shimmy” — but a new album from her has been missing since 2017. In February we could see her grappling with a song written by herself.
On the other hand Dolcenera is undoubtedly one of the most underrated artists on the Italian scene, with a very wide and varied discography and several appearances at the Festival. The singer would go back to basics to the Ligurian Riviera with a pop-rock song, a style hat brought her much fortune.
Other female names on the lists those of Ariete, Simona Molinari, Margherita Vicario, Donatella Rettore, Maria Antonietta, Loredana Bertè and the very young couple formed by singer Tecla and rapper Alfa.
More difficult to see on stage Elodie, Noemi and Arisa, who took part very recently at the festival.
According to the sources the male artists on stage could be Matteo Bocelli, son of the famous tenor Andrea, Gianluca Grignani, Michele Bravi, Federico Rossi, rapper Il Tre and the singer launched by Amici di Maria De Filippi Aka 7even, winner of the Best Italian Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards 2021.
Finally, there is no Sanremo without bands. The most quoted are Modà, The Kolors, Le Vibrazioni and Boomdabash.
What do you think? Who do you want to see competing at Sanremo 2022? Who should represent Italy at Eurovision in Turin? Tell us your thoughts below!