RTP the national broadcaster of Portugal has this evening revealed that 16 songs will be competing in Festival da Canção 2017.
Portugal will select their participant for the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 in Kyiv, Ukraine on March 5. 16 composers have been invited by RTP the national broadcaster of Portugal to submit a song to compete in the countries selection for the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. With the selection consisting of two semi finals and a final, the dates of the shows are as follows:
- 19 February – Semi Final 1
- 26 February – Semi Final 2
- 5 March – Final
The voting for this years contest has been overhauled with the introduction of a new jury voting system. The qualifiers from each semi final will be decided by 50% televote and 50% jury voting. A total of four songs will qualify from each semi final, meaning eight songs will compete in the final, the same voting process is used in the final. The jury voting is made up of 7 regional juries from across mainland Portugal as well as the Azores and Madeira.
Another major change to the selection process is the removal of the language rule in the selection process. It is now down to the composers to decide as to whether they wish to have their song performed in Portuguese or in any other language of their choice. The 16 singers and songs will be presented by RTP at the end of January.
The 16 composers invited to submit songs for the competition are:
- Luísa Sobral
- Rita Redshoes
- David Santos (Noiserv)
- Celina da Piedade
- Samuel Úria
- Nuno Gonçalves (The Gift)
- Pedro Silva Martins (Deolinda)
- Toli Caesar Machado (GNR)
- João Pedro Coimbra (Mesa)
- Nuno Figueiredo (Virgin Suta)
- Pedro Saraiva (Sir Aiva / DR Sax)
- Nuno Feist
- Jorge Fernando
- João Only
- Heber Marques
Nuno Arta Silva who is working with RTP on this years selection stated that:
There was a need to stop to think and make this a new moment of celebration of the composition of pop music. We have summoned some of the best pop composers of the moment, be it in rock, pop or fado record.
Portugal will be hoping to make their way into a Eurovision Song Contest final for the first time since 2010, having returned to the contest next year after sitting out the 2016 contest.