RTVSLO, the Slovenian national broadcaster, will reveal the 16 contestants that will take part in EMA 2018 on December 8.
A total of 108 songs were submitted to EMA 2018. This was an increase on the 90 songs received for the 2017 contest. There was a change to the rules this year, as songs were only permitted in Slovenian, or another minority language of Slovenia such as Croatian, German, Hungarian, Italian, Romani, or Serbian.
From the 108 submissions, 16 have been selected to take part in EMA 2018. All 16 songs will be performed in a semi-final in February, from which 8 will qualify for the final, which will also be held in February. Four of the qualifiers will chosen by juries and the other will be chosen by pubilc voting. In the final, the winner will be chosen by 50% jury vote and 50% public vote, and will go on to represent Slovenia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018. The exact dates of the semi-final and final are yet to be confirmed. The semi-final will take place in RTVSLO Studio 1 in Ljubjlana.
Slovenia has used EMA (Evrovizijska Melodija) to select their Eurovision entry since 1996, with the exception of 2012 and 2013. The winner of EMA 2017 was Omar Naber, who went on to the Eurovision Song Contest in Kyiv, Ukraine. With his song “On My Way”, he didn’t manage to get out of the semi-final and finished 17th with 36 points. This was not the first time Omar represented his country, as he made his first appearance at Eurovision in 2005 with his song “Stop”.
Slovenia in the Eurovision Song Contest
Slovenia was one of three countries to join the Eurovision Song Contest in 1993. The country qualified through a specially organised selection round called “Kvalifikacija za Millstreet” which was hosted in Slovenia, seven countries competed for three spots in Eurovision 1993. The country has participated in 22 editions of the Eurovision Song Contest. Their best result came in 1995 when Darja Švajger finished 7th scoring a total of 84 points, she is closely followed by Nuša Derenda who finished 7th in the 2001 contest with 70 points.