A record number of entries have been received by the Norwegian national broadcaster, NRK, for the country’s upcoming national final for the Eurovision Song Contest, Melodi Grand Prix 2017.
Receiving a total of 1,035 entries, MGP Executive Producer Jan Fredrik Karlsen confirmed to Dagbladet:
We have received 1,035 songs. That’s a record. We will now pick 10 great songs of different genres, which can be broadly based. We have a stronger focus on winning the international final.
An initial shortlist of around 100 entries is expected to be made initially, with a finalised set of 10 final songs to be selected via a NRK panel, with the national broadcaster determined and ready to bring Norway their fourth Eurovision victory.
Introducing the international jury
Back in September, NRK confirmed a big change would be made to the Norwegian national final following the country’s non-qualification earlier this year in Stockholm; an international jury consisting of 10-12 countries will have their say in the Melodi Grand Prix final for the first time in over 20 years.
Speaking of the changes to the Norwegian selection process, Karlsen revealed:
There will be jury members from 10 to 12 countries. It is important to have a good geographical spread, and people with a flair that can choose the right song to send off – a song that can be embraced by the whole of Europe.
Norway’s last victory to date was in 2009 when Alexander Rybak was selected to compete in Moscow with his entry Fairytale, gaining the now second highest amount of points to date with 387. Could 2017 be Norway’s year?