In an surprise move, AVROTROS announced today that the Junior Songfestival would return to a televised format for the first time since 2015.
AVROTROS originally announced that they would follow the same format as last year, in which a pop group would be formed from applicants, who would then go on to represent the Netherlands in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. However, in a video on the Junior Songfestival Youtube channel, it was announced that six finalists will compete over two semi-finals and a final in order to decide who will represent the Netherlands in Tblisi. In a change from the live shows of past years, all acts will sing cover versions instead of original songs. The finalists consist of three soloists, a girl band, a duo and a boy band.
The six acts through to the semi-finals are:
- Luana, Manou and Lois
- Wieke and Dylan
- Niels, Max, Jannes and Ian
Ivo was originally part of the boy band but he decided to withdraw from the Junior Songfestival after getting a role in a musical. Ian was then brought in to replace Ivo.
Romy Monteiro will take over from Jan Smit as the new Junior Songfestival presenter. Speaking to the new website Mediacourant.nl, Monteiro says that she is honoured to be presenting the live shows:
“It’s a jubilee year: the Junior Songfestival is turning 15 and is returning to television after one year of absence. In recent years the festival has proved to be a true springboard for young singing talent. And the boys and girls we see in the semifinals this year are also very promising talents.”
The two semi-finals will be shown on NPO 3 on September 2nd and 9th at 19.25. The final will be on the same network on September 16th at 19.25.
[tw-accordion-section title=”The Netherlands in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest”]
The Netherlands debuted at the first edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in 2003. To date the country has only won the competition once. Their only victory came in 2009 when Ralf Mackenbach performed “Click Clack” scoring a total of 121 points, this was just 5 points more than runners-up Armenia and Russia. The Netherlands narrowly lost the contest in 2011 when Rachel performed “Teenager”, she lost by 5 points. The Netherlands worst result came in 2015 when Shalisa finished in 15th place out of 17 competing countries.