Malta will no longer use the X Factor Malta for its Eurovision selection, instead returning to a separate selection show.
The Chairman of the Valletta Cultural Agency, Mr. Jason Micallef has confirmed on Facebook that the Maltese broadcaster is returning to a separate selection for Eurovision. The news comes after PBS announced auditions today for the third series of the X Factor Malta, which had been the Maltese Eurovision selection since 2019. Mr. Micallef stated:
It is fitting to commend the wise decision of the new management of PBS, that with immediate effect, the representation of Malta in the next edition of Eurovision, will be through a specially staged festival, and not the winner of X Factor Malta.
I am convinced that this news will be received with great satisfaction by all Maltese singers, authors and composers.
It is not known what the format of the new Maltese selection process will be. Previously the Malta Eurovision Song Contest had been held with an open submissions process for singers to compete with songs in the contest. The Maltese public last selected its Eurovision song in 2018, when Christabelle competed with “Taboo”.
Image Source: EBU / Thomas Hanses | Source: Jason Micallef
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.