The national broadcaster of Bosnia & Herzegovina has turned down an offer by Ralph Siegel to sponsor the nations participation in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019.
BHRT has confirmed that veteran Eurovision songwriter and composer Ralph Siegel had approached them to fund their participation in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019. Mr Siegel had offered to sponsor the nations participation at the 2018 contest on the condition that Hanka Paldum represent the country in Lisbon. However current EBU sanctions have meant the offer has had to be declined.
Lejla Babovic informed Klix.ba that;
Last year we could not accept that offer because we did not participate in the Eurosong. We left this opportunity open and this year we contacted the EBU regarding the possibility of BHRT participation at the Eurosong in 2019. Unfortunately, the BHRT remains under the sanctions of the EBU, who told us that BHRT can not participate in the Eurosong until it resolves the trial and does not see how it will begin to repay debts that are higher than 6 million Swiss francs,
Ralph Siegel has written and produced 25 songs for the Eurovision Song Contest to date. The first Eurovision song produced by Siegel was performed in 1974, and was called “Bye Bye I Love You”, which brought a respectable 4th place for Luxembourg. The latest song, “Spirit of the Night” was performed in the 2017 contest by Valentina Monetta and Jimmie Wilson for San Marino, which came last in the semi-final. Eurovision fans will also notice that Siegel was responsible for all San Marinese entries from 2012-2015. The most successful Siegel song at the Eurovision Song Contest was “Ein bisschen Frieden”, which brought Germany their first victory in 1982.
Bosnia and Herzegovina last participated at the 2016 contest, in which returning artist Deen represented the country with the song “Ljubav Je” along with Dalal, Ana Rucner and Jala. The group just missed out on qualification chances, ending in 11th place in the semi-final with 104 points. Before 2016, the country took a break between 2013 and 2015. Before then, the country had managed to qualify from the semi-finals every year they participated. To date the best Bosnian entry is from 2006, in which Hari Mata Hari brought home a 3rd place finish with his song “Lejla”.
Bosnia & Herzegovina debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1993, at the time the country was at war with Yugoslavia, with the singers having to leave Sarajevo under the cover of darkness to make it to Millstreet, Ireland. The countries best result in the Eurovision Song Contest came in 2006 when Hari Mata Hari made it to the final in Athens and finished 3rd with 229 points, the country received eight sets of 12 points, more than any other country. Bosnia last participated in 2016 where Dalal & Deen feat. Ana Rucner & Jala finished 11th in their semi final and failed to reach the final.