The BBC have announced changes to the format of the upcoming edition of Eurovision: You Decide, the British national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest.
Eurovision: You Decide will take place in February 2019 in MediaCity UK in Salford in the northwest of England. This will be the first edition of the selection to be held outside of southern England. Mel Giedroyc and Måns Zelmerlöw will both return to host the show for the second year in a row.
The format of the show has also been changed. Three songs will be performed in the competition by six artists. Each song will be performed by two different artists, who will compete against each other in a sing-off. After the three sing-offs are completed, the three remaining combinations of artist and song will be voted on again. The winner of this vote will represent the United Kingdom in Tel Aviv.
Speaking about the format changes, Mel Balac, Creative Director for Entertainment BBC Studios and Executive Producer of Eurovision: You Decide said:
“This year the three songs presented to the United Kingdom have been selected with the help of an international jury. Our exciting “euro-version” format will give fans the chance to compare and contrast these fantastic songs in a fresh, new way and deliver the United Kingdom the artist it deserves to fly the flag out in Tel Aviv in May.”
Kate Phillips, Controller of Entertainment Commissioning at the BBC said:
“Forget about a sing-off, next year it’s all about the song-off as we once again try to marry a great singer with a great song, one which could finally get us on the left hand side of the leader board. We may be leaving the EU but we are still determined to win Eurovision again one day!”
Ken Bruce, BBC Radio 2’s Eurovision commentator, will be broadcasting from Salford on the morning of the event. The guest performers will also be announced soon.
SuRie recently represented the United Kingdom at the Eurovision Song Contest 2018, where she placed 24th in the Final with her song “Storm”. Her song “Storm” entered the Official Singles Charts in the United Kingdom at No.50, becoming the highest charting entry from the nation in four years.
The United Kingdom in the Eurovision Song Contest
The United Kingdom debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1957 and holds the record for the most consecutive appearances in the contest. To date the UK has won the contest a total of five times, with their first victory coming in 1967 and their latest in 1997. The UK holds the record for the most second place finishes in the contest, having been runner-up a total of 15 times. Since 2000 the UK has finished within the top 10 only twice, this being in 2002 with Jessica Garlick and in 2009 with Jade Ewen.