Afro-Dite will soon be singing for Sweden. But if they sing too well – and win – , it may damage the Melodifestivalen next year.
Swedish broadcaster SVT is already planning next year's national preselection – the Melodifestivalen – and the plan is again to have eight semi-finals.
However, with this year's Swedish entrants Afro-Dite climbing higher and higher up European ranking lists, the SVT management fear an economical crisis medio 2003.
“If Afro-Dite win, and we have to stage the 2003 ESC, it will seriously complicate our budget”, says an SVT employee to Expressen.
SVT are at the same time reluctant to dissing the semi-finals, which had great ratings. “Via the televoting alone, we raised eighteen million SEK appr. 2.5 m. � for the Swedish Save the Children”, says the employee.
In order for SVT to give up on semi-finals next year they need a very special reason. “For example”, the employee suggests, “a victory in Tallinn on 25th May.”