Former Executive Supervisor Jon Ola Sand has revealed that the EBU discussed plans to make national selections mandatory for the Eurovision Song Contest.
Jon Ola Sand has spoken to Jan Bors for the latest edition of Humans of Eurovision, regarding his past role as the Executive Supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest. During the interview, a number of topics came up including the use of national selections to determine a nation’s representative for the contest.
Mr. Sand revealed that during his tenure, the EBU looked at making it compulsory for the participating broadcasters to hold national selections for the Eurovision Song Contest. He explained that the thought process behind the idea was:
to strengthen the Eurovision Song Contest brand and give the audience a chance to vote, to make sure (artists) have the support from the viewers
During his time as Executive Supervisor, a number of countries held national selections that had in recent years internally selected their representatives including:
- Armenia – Depi Evratesil – 2017 to 2018
- United Kingdom – Eurovision: You Decide – 2016 to 2019
- France – Destination Eurovision – 2018 to 2019
- Montenegro – Montevizija – 2018 to 2019
- Serbia – Beovizija – 2018 to 2020
Jon Ola went on to explain that plans for the introduction of such a rule were dropped as “It’s not a good idea to make it mandatory because we (the EBU) cannot influence the schedule of the broadcasters”
National selections have been mandatory in other EBU competitions including the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. From its first edition up until a rule change in 2014 it was required for broadcasters to hold a national selection to determine their representative. Broadcasters were only allowed not to hold a selection if they received permission from the EBU.
Image Source: Eurovision.tv | Source: Jan Bors