LTV, the Latvian national broadcaster, will reveal the artists that will take part in Supernova 2018 on Wednesday. The announcement will take place during a press conference in the Alfa shopping centre in Riga.
The competing artists were chosen via online voting and jury voting. Fans from around the world were able to listen to all 63 shortlisted songs on the official Supernova website and express their opinion of the participating songs by clicking the “like” or “dislike” buttons. The names of the artists were not revealed this year as to prevent potential influences to the voting. The jury then selected 30 artists to put through to the next stage of the competition, taking into consideration the results of the online voting. Supernova producers later revealed that 72% of online votes were “dislikes”.
A total of 30 artists were selected to perform live in front of the professional jury. The jury was made up of Supernova producer Ilze Jansone, music producer DJ Rudd, Supernova host Toms Grēviņš and jazz singer Jolanta Gulbe. It was revealed that 10 of the successful acts were unanimous favourites of the jury, while the rest needed more deliberation. Jury member Jolanta Gulbe revealed she was surprised by some of the newer artists:
“There were unexpected surprises when it seemed that there was nothing special in the recording, but the perception changed completely with the live performance. It’s a pleasure to see a new strong generation of musicians who are endowed with both good voices and the ability to create their own songs, who can speak and defend their views.”
LTV has not revealed exactly how many artists will be selected for the Supernova live shows. Supernova was first used to select the Latvian entry for the Eurovision Song Contest in 2015. It proved successful, as Aminata Savadogo finished 7th in the final with “Love Injected”, Latvia’s first appearance in the final since 2008 and first top 10 placing since 2005.
Latvia in the Eurovision Song Contest
Latvia debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 2000, being the last of the Baltic nations to join the contest. On their debut, Brainstorm finished in 3rd place with the song “My Star”. Latvia won the contest for the first and only time in 2002, with Marie N’s “I Wanna”. Latvia only participated in 2002 thanks to the withdrawal of Portugal from the contest, as Latvia’s poor result in 2001 had relegated them from the 2002 contest. Latvia struggled in to the contest after 2002, failing to qualify for the final for six years between 2009 and 2014. In 2015 and 2016 Latvia has finished 6th and 15th in the final respectively.