Hei Norge! Melodi Grand Prix returned for 2023 this evening as Norway began the job of choosing its representative for Eurovision in Liverpool.

Following a shake-up of the national selection, we no longer have duels or automatic qualifiers. Instead, each semi-final is a free-for-all battle between seven competing acts.

Melodi Grand Prix 2023 semi-final 1

Running order

  1. Alessandra Mele – “Queen of Kings”
  2. Eirik Næss – “Wave”
  3. Rasmus Thall – “Tresko”
  4. Kate Gulbrandsen – “Tårer i paradis”
  5. Umami Tsunami – “Geronimo”
  6. Ulrikke Brandstorp – “Honestly”
  7. Byron Williams Jr & Jowst – “Freaky for the Weekend”

Results: The Three Qualifiers

For the heats of Melodi Grand Prix 2023, the outcome will just be down to the public. Viewers can choose three acts to qualify for the grand final on 4 February.

The qualifiers were revealed in random order. Producers had previously said they would reveal the winner, but wisely backed away from that in order to preserve suspense headed into the final.

  • Umami Tsunami – “Geronimo”
  • Ulrikke Brandstorp – “Honestly”
  • Alessandra Mele – “Queen of Kings”

Eliminated acts

  • Eirik Næss – “Wave”
  • Rasmus Thall – “Tresko”
  • Kate Gulbrandsen – “Tårer i paradis”
  • Byron Williams Jr & Jowst – “Freaky for the Weekend”

Has anyone surprised you? Do you think any of these acts could go on to win Melodi Grand Prix 2023? Let us know in the comments below.

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Denpetter
Denpetter
6 days ago

Have you noticed how similar Alessandras song is to this one? ??? https://youtu.be/vdzHlbFItlw

Misha
13 days ago

I really liked Umami Tsunami. But as many say here, maybe with Autotune off it could be a disaster! Alessandra could do it well in the final (not a winner though), but at the same time I think the sound of Queen of Kings is a bit dated. I know most of you want Ulrikke to win, and she’s a great singer, but the song….. I don’t see it being a top 10 in the final

Steph
Steph
13 days ago

Gutted that Tresko did not get through…i loved it!!
Thought it was a pretty strong semi final.

Hdhs
Hdhs
13 days ago

quite disappointed theres autotune this year
was hoping to hear allessandras live vocals clearly
and lets be real umami tsunami would probably do worse without it despite an energetic performance

stan:
ella waist
tiril break it
maria celin freya

Zanoni
Zanoni
14 days ago

Holy cow that Elsie Bay song is good.

vetrina
vetrina
14 days ago

so far, Ulrikke seems like an early favourite for ESC 2023, though I’m not a fan of her song!

Jack
Jack
14 days ago

The umami boys without autotune would have been a vocal meme.

Roro31
Roro31
15 days ago

Sorry but Ulrikke its very good, if is like Greece’22 with a 8th place on the final, will be a good place for Norway anyway!

Ulrikke its the best so far (i’m waiting Maria Celin !!! Elsie Bay, Akuvi & Sandra Lyng

Theresa May
Theresa May
15 days ago

On Ulrikke’s song and staging, someone tweeted “its like of i tell and AI to create a eurovision performance”. Someone else said the “middle-aged OGAE fans just creamed themselves”

In his reaction, Deban said it felt overproduced but liked the vocal.

I agree with these. It’s a nice song (slightly bland) and the vocals are quite good. But that is all that it is. Not that unique or interesting. It would do perhaps Greece 22 amount of points at best. A “sure fire winner?” LMAO.

WERGELAND
WERGELAND
15 days ago
Reply to  Theresa May

Agree! All this Ulrikke frenzy – it’s overshadowing a mediocre song and a vocal that isn’t all that special. Let’s cast our minds back to all best ESC vocals over the years – and compare. Yesterday Kate G delivered by far the best vocal – for one. All in all – there is too much Ulrikke-hype and too little focus on the actual song!

Tom
Tom
15 days ago
Reply to  WERGELAND

Fully agree but wiwi unnecesarily creates Ulrikke hype as well. Its mediocre song really.

Hdhs
Hdhs
13 days ago
Reply to  Tom

agreed
they even commented on the honestly vid to congratulate her and ripped off the other participants

Mbappe
Mbappe
15 days ago
Reply to  Theresa May

It’s definitely nowhere near Greece ’22 tho, and nowhere near Attention either for that matter. Hoping for Elsie Bay to go through this year, seems like Norway’s best choice.

Jamie
Jamie
14 days ago
Reply to  Theresa May

Accurate as hell. The only thing that I don’t understand is why Wiwi keeps pushing her. If you want to stay biased, at least pick a better entry…

Hdhs
Hdhs
13 days ago
Reply to  Theresa May

ebu better create a new award called most accurate wiwi comment

Briekimchi
Briekimchi
15 days ago

The whole autotune fiasco has taken me a bit out of this selection. It really hurts acts like Ulrikke and Kate who really can sing. They’re the two acts that clearly stood out for me as needing to qualify and then, Alessandra Mele (if she can actually sing her song – who knows) has the next best song for me and deserves to be in the final.

I think Ulrikke is going to be incredibly hard to beat, not only because of her talent and her song but also, because she’s so likeable and her previous Eurovision situation.

WERGELAND
WERGELAND
15 days ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

I think “gushy” is the word – but likeable? Hm … !

Purple Mask
Purple Mask
15 days ago
Reply to  Briekimchi

Thanks. I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who thought Autotune was a disservice to the better singers.

Hdhs
Hdhs
13 days ago
Reply to  Purple Mask

woah
every participant is forced to perform with autotune?

Zanoni
Zanoni
15 days ago

“Tresko” would have been my #2 after Ulrikke, but I guess these were probably the “right” choices

Zlatko
Zlatko
15 days ago
Reply to  Zanoni

That cringe staging for Tresko though.

Hdhs
Hdhs
13 days ago
Reply to  Zlatko

pls it was iconic

Eurovision fan
Eurovision fan
15 days ago

I could see Umami Tsunami and Ulrikke in the superfinal

Ethan1994
Ethan1994
15 days ago
Reply to  Eurovision fan

Me too. But there is no superfinal this year. They’re doing only one round of voting in the final this year, 50% online vote and 50% jury vote.

Eurovision fan
Eurovision fan
15 days ago

I wish Eirik qualified, his song had positive vibe

Héctor
Héctor
15 days ago

A bit meh in general. The Scandinavian NFs sound very average each year. Some of the songs are catchy and radiofriendly but have no meaning or soul at all. They aren’t enjoyable or bringing something new either. Just more of the same, which is kind of basic.

Benito Camelo
Benito Camelo
15 days ago
Reply to  Héctor

I kind of agree with you, you can tell if a song is Norwegian just by the tempo and beat, it’s so characteristic of them –and overused at this point

Stian F
Stian F
15 days ago
Reply to  Benito Camelo

Wow imagine that… A country having a familiar sound to it. Maybe we should all do like Armenia 2022 and just sound American all of us. God forbid if Greece sound Greek, Spain sound Spanish or Italy sounding Italian…

Stian F
Stian F
15 days ago
Reply to  Héctor

You are wrong though – almost all of these songs had a meaning, except for the JOWST and the Umami Tsunami song… They were all about having fun only. Especially the Ulrikke and the Kate song has deep meaning, and Tresko came with a deep back story as well – but it wasnt conveyed well still…

Kalla
Kalla
15 days ago

On a slightly negative note. What on earth was Jowst thinking when he entered to come back with this song. Was a little embarrassing on his part I feel.

Kalla
Kalla
15 days ago

Just finished watching the show, definitely improving every year, the stage and lighting is better again. The three I most enjoyed got through. Alessandra was a surprise, hadn’t really listened before, reminded me of run to hills by klara last year, although maybe not quite as strong. Unami were as cringe and uncomfortable to watch as I was expecting, but cuedos they really sold the song and it was full of energy. Ulrikke delivered an amazing vocal, beat of the season so far, still not sure if I like it as much as Attention, maybe harsh to try compare them.… Read more »

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
15 days ago

The three qualifiers are exactly who I expected to make it to the final

Kosey
Kosey
15 days ago

Ukrikke feels like an 8/10 at the moment. I really want her to reach 10/10 status as with Attention. Hopefully something in the final with convert it from very accomplished to amazing.

Umami Tsunami were pleasantly fresh. The boy who sings the title of the track sounds exactly like the Fall Out Boy singer which is no bad thing. They did the youthful boy band thing very well.

And Alessandra ticked all the right Europop boxes and deserves a place in the final.

Zach
Zach
15 days ago

at least there’s good news here to counteract the catastrophe that was the belgium nf

willchrisian
willchrisian
15 days ago

That was a good show! There wasn’t a single song I disliked. Byron Williams Jr’s “dancing” was pretty hard to look at but I still didn’t fast forward (I didn’t watch live). Alessandra’s song is nice but the staging was bad, the song has that Scandi production that, after 10+ years, I’m quite tired of and even though she sounded fine, she is shouty and by the end of the song she started losing her voice. I expected Eirik to advance. I usually can’t stand that type of songs but for some reason his performance felt warm and cosy. There… Read more »

Hdhs
Hdhs
13 days ago
Reply to  willchrisian

il have to agree with Alessandra
i love her so g and she had so much for potential for her staging (was hoping for something like the album cover)

WERGELAND
WERGELAND
15 days ago

Ulrikke’s vocals were not on point – never heard her deliver so poorly! She could do with some technique!

Benito Camelo
Benito Camelo
15 days ago
Reply to  WERGELAND

Are we talking about the same live performance?

Hdhs
Hdhs
13 days ago
Reply to  Benito Camelo

bros watching from ohio
live stream issues
ignore him

WannaEatMySpaghetti
WannaEatMySpaghetti
15 days ago

I was team Ulrikke because I haven’t listen Alessandra’s song before. I think I fell in love :’)
But both of them are amazing. Good luck Norway to make a choice

Dane
Dane
15 days ago

am I the only one who think Ulrikkes staging was a little underwhelming? I think the song is good but it didn’t give me winner vibes yet

Theresa May
Theresa May
15 days ago
Reply to  Dane

it isnt Euro winner at all, not on that level. It is a 13th – 6th place entry. Mb NGP winner

Aaa
Aaa
14 days ago
Reply to  Dane

yes but i think it will look better on the big stage

Nikki
Nikki
15 days ago

Pretty strong qualifiewr, I liked everyone except JOWST, and I even think that it’s not that bad, maybe more something San Marino would pick than Norway. I feel sad my new baby Rasmus didn’t qualify, but, he’s got a new fan.

I liked Ulrikke, but, I do think Attention was better, by a certain distance.

I hope that Norway can keep the good level for the rest of the competition.

#justicefortresko
#RasmusThalfor2024
;-P

WannaEatMySpaghetti
WannaEatMySpaghetti
15 days ago

Norway is on fire this year, I’m f… amazed. Continue Norway, you will win Eurovision pretty soon.

brennan
brennan
15 days ago

As a Norwegian speaker I am unsurprised by the results, yet a little sad for Kate Guldbransen, who had quite the journey in getting to MGP. She was a good sport throughout the semi. Rasmus Thall was fun, I will give whatever future album he puts out a listen. Ulrikke seems like the obvious winner of the whole contest (and rightfully so given her pandemic robbery), but the song doesn’t do anything for me besides filling the “well-belted ballad” slot which is integral (!!!) to every edition of Eurovision. Umami Tsunami is unadulterated cringe, but Norway loves that, doesn’t it.… Read more »

Nikki
Nikki
15 days ago
Reply to  brennan

Cringe, well done, is fun. And they did it quite well. They do seem to work in a sort of “boyband style who tries to be kpop adjacent” style- catchy songs, elaborated choreos- who actually has a good number of fans all around, and being televote only semis, have a bunch of cute twenty somethings being “kpop adjacent” might get some 16yo nerd votes coming your way.

Renne
Renne
15 days ago
Reply to  brennan

Kate Guldbransen </3 🙁

Benito Camelo
Benito Camelo
15 days ago
Reply to  brennan

After Umami Tsunami I feel like having a Kpop boy band counterpart making songs with reggaeton, regional Mexican or afro beats wouldn’t be such a crazy idea anymore xd

wait, what
wait, what
15 days ago

Alessandra televote winner vibes
I enjoyed Ulrikke’s performance, yet too eurovision-esque
I’ll miss Tresko.

Doggy Bark
Doggy Bark
15 days ago

And after selections like this people say there are good songs in Estonian selection 😀

Tommm
Tommm
15 days ago
Reply to  Doggy Bark

Dude Estonia and Finland are serving this year, Norway too – sadly Croatia, Malta, Latvia, Belgium and Albania not that much

Alex
Alex
15 days ago

I love Ulrikke but gurl please change the styling, hair and makeup. You look older than you are.

I like her song but Attention still lives rentfree in my head.

Film4o
Film4o
15 days ago

This semi felt like a final. It was so strong and the stagings elevated all songs. Im very happy for Ulrikke, Umami Tsunami and Alessandra. Rasmus and Kate were so good too. Too bad there were only 3 spots. Rasmus staging was so interesting. Not a single dull moment. Every 20 seconds something new and wacky was happening and Kate song was nostalgia song done right and the staging was very thoughtful and elegant. Ulrikke song had so many climaxed. I hope it wins. She seems like a very emotional and kind person and her voice is something else. Umami… Read more »

The Voice of Reason
The Voice of Reason
15 days ago

Tresko was fun but I get why it didn’t qualify. Freaky for the Weekend DESPITE it being kinda cringy, had a really original opening sequence – the other contestants didn’t have such an interesting transition that made every second interesting as new things were added! Other national final acts could learn from this!

Stian F
Stian F
15 days ago

It was a good opening, but i wouldnt call it original. Starting off stage is so Robin Bengtsson 2017. LoL.

Matt
Matt
15 days ago

I’m pretty sure Ulkrikke will win the whole thing. That said, I feel like the staging can still be elevated a bit, especially if she goes to Eurovision. If she doesn’t want to use Pyro, maybe a ton of confetti or something falling down from the ceiling would be a total moment

Stian F
Stian F
15 days ago
Reply to  Matt

She wanted to… But NRK didnt allow it for the semifinals… Probably will be for the final though ?

Zach
Zach
15 days ago
Reply to  Matt

NRK cut the budget this year so no pyros allowed, though she’s supposedly working on an alternative for the final

Adina
Adina
15 days ago

tbh, I would’ve liked Tresko to go to the final over Alessandra, I thought the staging of Alessandra was a bit boring tbh

The performance of Umami Tsunami was a bit of a mess tonight but they seem to have a big fanbase, so hopefully they’ll tweak things and smooth things over until the final

and Ulrikke, she was the best of the night, no doubt

Tommm
Tommm
15 days ago

Alessandra needs to invite Lumix and Klara Hamarstrom to the final and maybe add Halo around her – would be cool 😀

I am happy for all who made it … Its funny that Jowst beated Ulrike in 2017 and now Karma worked in a different way haha

Its quite difficult to predict the winner, depends on International juries as well

Jghtl
15 days ago

Alessandra was the best tonight

Kevan1994
Kevan1994
15 days ago

Favourite 3 clips, favourite 3 songs, and favourite 3 performances. Quality semifinal overall but glad these 3 went through :).

Forrest
Forrest
15 days ago

Will Elsie Bay or Ulrikke witht he whole thing? Or will it be somebody else?

Jghtl
15 days ago
Reply to  Forrest

Im hoping for someone else

Nikki
Nikki
15 days ago
Reply to  Forrest

Right now, I’m saying Alessandra. But let’s see what the rest of the qualifiers offer.

Danny K
Danny K
13 days ago
Reply to  Forrest

Jone hopefully

Jonas
Jonas
15 days ago

I miss Ronny Brede Aase.

Colin
Colin
15 days ago

I had a hunch that this would be the qualifiers. Congrats! Too bad that Rasmus and Kate weren’t positioned in other semis. I’ll probably place these songs really high on my MGP list.

Jonas
Jonas
15 days ago

Not surprising, still disappointing.

WERGELAND
WERGELAND
15 days ago
Reply to  Jonas

Totally agree!

Elizabeth
Elizabeth
15 days ago

Congrats to Umami Tsunami, Ulrikke, and Alessandra!

BadWoolfGirl
BadWoolfGirl
15 days ago
Reply to  Elizabeth

Those are the three I expected to qualify from the semifinal anyway.

Lolek
Lolek
15 days ago

Ulrikke, Alessandra and Umami Tsunami. I expected as much, though for a moment I thought that Rasmus just MIGHT squeak through.

Forrest
Forrest
15 days ago

The final qualifier is… ALESSANDRA MELE! Kate guldbransen is out.

Forrest
Forrest
15 days ago

Erik Naess is not through. Ulrikke is through to the finals.

Forrest
Forrest
15 days ago

Umami Tsunami are through to the final. Rasmus Thall, JOWST and Byron are not through.

Lolek
Lolek
15 days ago

What an odd way to call out the qualifiers. Going through each candidate to say whether they qualified or not (and it doesn’t seem to be in the order they performed either).

Addie
Addie
15 days ago
Reply to  Lolek

Yeah it sort of seems rude to the non-qualifiers to say to their faces that they’ve not qualified.

Addie
Addie
15 days ago

Goodness this is a strong line up! I really can’t choose my favorites. Alessandra was amazing as usual. Kate was so good and her voice is just heavenly. Tresko had a very unexpected performance. I literally had to run my eyes few times to see whether I was dreaming. But I loved it and rasmus is just so charismatic! And Umami Tsunami, even though you can hear a bit of auto tune, they were fire! Like the high note at the end? That was great! Oh and then ulrikke. I wasn’t really a fan of honestly, but now I’m in… Read more »

Chris
Chris
15 days ago

Ulrikke is, sadly, very dated. I’m almost certain she’ll qualify and maybe even win MGP, but it is exactly what it is – a dated Eurovision ballad.

Tom
Tom
15 days ago
Reply to  Chris

Exactly

Newjerseyvision
Newjerseyvision
15 days ago

Don’t think he will qualify but I must say – Tresko is now in my Spotify playlist

Addie
Addie
15 days ago

Taste!

Nikki
Nikki
15 days ago

Mine too, I have a Norwegian playlist and I literally put it in while he was still performing. I Rasmus tries again at MGP someday, I really like him and his songs.

Newjerseyvision
Newjerseyvision
15 days ago

I feel like Ulkrikke was missing the wall of fire she had in Attention. A small detail but would have elevated the last portion of the song.

That being said – she is still my winner

Newjerseyvision
Newjerseyvision
15 days ago

I think the lighting specifically is what (slightly) threw off the staging. The background lights obscured the violin players. Maybe to have them as a focal point could be a good way to elevate the picture.

Fingers crossed she goes to Liverpool and can show us the elevation

Espen Pedersen
Espen Pedersen
15 days ago

NRK didn’t have enough money for pyro this year, I guess that’s why there’s so much confetti

Newjerseyvision
Newjerseyvision
15 days ago
Reply to  Espen Pedersen

Thank you for the context! Did not know that

Felix
Felix
15 days ago

I respectfully disagree. Maybe its because I’m norwegian, but I see that “wall of pyro” staging too much with power ballads. I feel like the lack of it forced them to be creative and do things like better camera angles – like when the stage goes dark except for a single spotlight for the big “Ulrikke note” moment, and when she turned for the bridge so the whole audience was behind her. I actually prefer the confetti to pyro, it has this flowery, “airy” feel that I think gives it more of a unique look. It reminds me a bit… Read more »