The qualification round of next year�s Eurovision Song Contest, which will take place on Wednesday before the big final, will not be broadcasted in Germany's first channel ARD. As a part of the “Big Four”, Germany has a secured place in Saturday�s final and does not have to qualify. There is however a small chance that the qualification round will be aired via some of the regional channels of the German broadcaster, but only on the proviso that German viewers will be allowed to vote in the semifinal, as Dr. Jürgen Meier-Beer from German broadcaster NDR told in an interview in the recent edition of the fanzine “TOM”, issued by German Eurovision fan club ECG.
“In Germany, a live broadcast of the qualification show on Wednesday on first channel is out of the question”, Dr. Meier-Beer said in the interview. “I hope that we can offer a live broadcast in some of the regional third channels. But this is under the precondition that the German televiewers are allowed to vote then.” Meier-Beer declared his understanding for the technical needs that resulted in the decision to stage the qualification round four days before the final, but bemoaned that “it would have been better for the acceptance of the viewers to hold the qualification on Friday.” Final decisions will be made at a meeting of the Eurovision Reference Group in early September.
Concerning the German nation final, Meier-Beer stated that “the preselection will have to change in a major point next year. This year, the recent practice of how record companies have supplied the show with participants was not satisfying anymore.” The head of entertainment at NDR is in negotiations recently, but there are no official results yet. There are rumours circulating concerning a cooperation with the German music channel VIVA, but an official statement will most probably not be given out before late autumn.