HRT has today held a press conference, confirming the host city and date of the final of Dora 2019.
The contest will be returning to Opatija and be hosted at the Marino Cvetkovic Sports Hall. Opatija is the home of Dora, having previously hosted the contest during its early years in the 1990s. The final of Dora 2019 is not set for February 16, with the winner representing Croatia at the Eurovision Song Contest. The Head of HRT commented;
It is a special honor to announce that HRT’s project Dora returns to Opatija. This is a long tradition, so I would like to remind you that in 1992 there was the first festival organized in which the Croatian song for the song Eurovision was chosen. Over the years, it was a break, and now HRT and Opatija City will jointly return this project where it belongs. Therefore, we can announce that as part of the HRT Music Days, Dora will be held on Saturday, February 16th, a contest for the Croatian representative for the Eurovision Song Contest in 2019
Dora will be surrounded by two days of programming from Opatija. In the day before the contest there will be a concert by the Symphony Orchestra, while the day after the Jazz Orchestra of HRT will perform.
Dora was previously used to select every Croatian entry from the country’s debut in 1993 until 2011. HRT cancelled the selection after 2011, citing Croatia’s poor results in the last ten years and decreasing public interest.
Croatia debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1993, they were one of three countries to debut in the contest that year. Croatia’s best result came in 1999 when Doris Dragovic finished 4th in Jerusalem. She performed the song “Marija Magdalena” which scored a total of 118 points, this included 12 points from Slovenia and Spain. Croatia returned to the contest in 2016 having withdrawn after the 2013 contest due to a string of poor results and financial difficulties.