RTVSLO, the Slovenian national broadcaster, has revealed the artists that will participate in EMA 2018, the Slovenian selection for the Eurovision Song Contest. The songs will be revealed at a later date.
The 16 participants are:
- Anabel – “Pozitiva” (Positive)
- BQL – “Ptica” (Bird)
- Gregor Ravnik – “Zdaj je čas” (Now is the Time)
- Ina Shai – “V nebo” (In the sky)
- Indigo – “Vesna” (Spring)
- KiNG FOO – “Žive sanje” (Live the Dream)
- Lara Kadis – “Zdaj sem tu” (Now I’m Here)
- Lea Sirk – “Cirque” (Circus)
- ManuElla – “Dan potem” (The Day After)
- Marina Martensson – “Blizu” (Close)
- MILA – “Svoboda” (Free)
- Nika Zorjan – “Uspavanka” (Sleepy)
- Nuška Drašček – “Ne zapusti me zdaj” (Don’t Leave Me Now)
- Orter – “Tisoč let” (A Thousand Years)
- Proper – “Ukraden cvet” (Stolen Flower)
- Tanja Ribič – “Ljudje” (People)
The line up contains several names that are familiar to fans. BQL, Ina Shai, KiNG FOO, Lea Sirk, Nika Zorjan and Nuška Drašček all participated in last year’s EMA. Two of the contestants have also represented Slovenia on previous occasions. ManuElla represented Slovenia in 2016 with “Blue and Red”, finishing 14th in the second semi-final. Tanja Ribič came 10th in 1997 with “Zbudi se”. Her daughter Zala also took part in EMA 2017 with “Lalalatino”.
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 1993, 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.