PBS, the Maltese national broadcaster, has confirmed that the winner of the second series of X Factor Malta will represent Malta at the Eurovision Song Contest 2020.
The second series of X Factor Malta began airing last week, with the first set of auditions being shown. The live shows will take place in January. The grand final will be held on February 8, with the winner becoming the Maltese representative for Rotterdam. The entry for Eurovision will then be selected at a later date. This will be the second year in a row that the winner of X Factor Malta will represent the country at Eurovision.
This year, X Factor Malta replaced the existing Maltese selection format, Malta Eurovision Song Contest.The Malta Eurovision Song Contest, also previously known as the Malta Song Festival, had been used to select Malta’s Eurovision entry since their debut in 1971. The selection had undergone a number of revamps in recent years, including the introduction of televoting and cutting out the semi-final stages.
Michela Pace won the first season of X Factor Malta and represented Malta in Tel Aviv this year. She finished 14th in the final with “Chameleon”, scoring a total of 107 points.
Malta in the Eurovision Song Contest
Malta debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1971 and was represented by Joe Grech and the song “Marija L-Maltija”, which finished last. Malta competed again in 1972 and 1975 but then withdrew until their return in 1991. During the 1990s Malta only once finished outside of the top 10, and in 1998 they came within just 7 points of victory. It was Chiara who brought the country their 3rd place finish in 1998, and who went on to finish in 2nd at the 2005 contest in Kyiv. The only other artist to finish 2nd for Malta is Ira Losco, who was 12 points away from victory in 2002. They are the longest and most successful participating country never to have won the Eurovision Song Contest.