Speculation that Hungary may withdraw from the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 began today after the rules for the upcoming edition of A Dal were published by MTVA.
The rules for A Dal 2020, the show which has been used to select the Hungarian Eurovision entry since 2012, contain no reference to Eurovision. The rules also state that competing songs must not have been released before March 1 2019, which goes against the September 1 rule for Eurovision. The other rules (which have since been removed from the official A Dal website) are as follows:
- Songs must not be over three minutes in length.
- The competing artists must have a record deal and/or a contract with a professional manager.
- All artists must be at least 16 as of January 18 2020.
- All artists be Hungarian citizens or Hungarian speakers.
- The songs must be in Hungarian, though foreign composers and songwriters are allowed.
- There can be a maximum of 10 people on stage.
- The performances will be half-playback (live vocals performed to a backing track).
- The competing artists will have to be available for MTVA until the end of March.
- A Dal’s acoustic competition will be held this year too, together with awards for “Best Lyrics” and “Best Newcomer”.
- The prize that the winner will get consists of the Petőfi Musical Award, opportunities to perform on the main stages of the VOLT and STRAND festivals, promotion in Radio Petőfi worth of 25 million forints, and 25 million forints in cash that has to be spent on their musical career (recording, gigs, music video shooting etc).
- The song submission deadline is November 15, 24:00 CET.
A Dal 2020 will be aired from January 18 to March 7, with eight shows in total. This is an increase from six in the last edition.
Hungary is one of three countries that took part in Eurovision 2019 (the other two being Armenia and Moldova), that have yet to confirm their participation in Eurovision 2020. If MTVA does confirm Hungary’s participation in Rotterdam, it is likely that they will either use a new national selection format or internally select the next Hungarian Eurovision representative.
Joci Pápai represented Hungary in Tel Aviv with “Az én apám” and finished 12th in the first semi-final with 97 points. This was the first time since 2010 that Hungary had not been featured in the Grand Final.
Source: ESC Portugal
Hungary in the Eurovision Song Contest
Hungary debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1994, they were represented by Friderika Bayer and the song “Kinek mondjam el vetkeimet”. She went on to finish in 4th place scoring a total of 122 points and four sets of 12 points. This result remains’ Hungary’s best in their history in the contest. Hungary participated from 1994 to 1994 before withdrawing until 2005, the country didn’t return again until 2008. Hungary then once again withdrew in 2010 before returning in 2011. Since their return in 2011 Hungary has qualified for the final every year.