BNT, the Bulgarian national broadcaster, has confirmed it will not be participating in Junior Eurovision 2017 due to time pressures at the broadcaster.
Bulgaria will not be taking part in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2018, due to internal changes at the broadcaster removing the time needed to organise participation in Tbilisi. Bulgaria’s withdrawal from the contest was triggered by an election to select the new Director General of BNT. As a result of the election which was held at the end of August, the broadcaster did not have the time necessary to sort out all of the procedures to select a singer and song for the competition.
At the start of September it was hoped that Bulgaria could be one of a number of countries joining the list of participating countries in Georgia, despite the official list already being released. At the time it was thought that Bulgaria, Israel and Croatia were still considering participation, when the official list of 16 participating countries was announced in the middle of August.
Sixteen countries will take part in the 15th edition of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest this year, including returning country Portugal, who haven’t participated since 2007. The contest will take place in the Olympic Palace in Tbilisi, Georgia on Sunday 26th November 2017 at 16:00 – 18:00 CET. This is the first time Georgia has hosted any Eurovision event. The sixteen countries taking part are:
- FYR Macedonia
- The Netherlands
There has been a change in the voting rules again this year. The audience will be able to vote online, which opens on Friday 24th November, and will close on Sunday 26th November. Viewers will have to watch the recap of all the songs before they place their vote on the JESC website. The first round of voting will close at 15:59 CET on Sunday 26th November. Then, during the live show, the online voting will open again once the last performance has taken place, and will be open for 15 minutes. The final audience result will be a combination of both the pre-show and live voting results. This will then make up 50% of the final vote, with the jury voting being the other 50%.
Other changes have been made to the rules of this years contest. The amount of a song that can be performed in English has been increased to 40% of the lyrics. While the number of voices on the backing track has been increased from five to six singers.
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Bulgaria debuted in the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in 2007. The country has never won the contest, and their best entry comes from 2014, when Krisia, Hasan and Ibrahim and their song “Planet of the Children” placed 2nd with 147 points. Bulgaria then went on to host the 2015 contest, in the capital Sofia. Their worst result was in 2008, when Krestiana Kresteva and her song “Edna Mechta” placed 15th with 15 points. Bulgaria have withdrawn multiple times from the contest, and were absent from 2009-2010, and 2012-2013.