RTÉ has confirmed that the national final to select Ireland's Eurovision Song Contest 2008 entry will take place on Saturday February 23rd 2008 in a venue outside the capital Dublin.
According to allkindsofeverything.ie it is believed that the University Concert Hall in Limerick city would be the venue.
This wouldn't the first time that Limerick's University Hall has been the venue for the selection of Ireland's Eurovision entry. Back in 1994, the University Hall staged the National Song Contest, hosted by Pat Kenny and the song chosen on the night of March 13th, was Rock'n'Roll Kids sung by Paul Harrington & Charlie McGettigan. Two months later, the song went on to give Ireland a record breaking third successive Eurovision Song Contestvictory, in Dublin's Point Theatre. Unlike 1994, when regional juries chose the Irish entry, the 2008 entry will be chosen by the public, from a selection of six songs.
As Saturday February 23rd is confirmed, RTÉ seems to have chosen the busiest night in this year's Eurovision calendar, as this is also the night when Bulgaria, Croatia, Iceland, Poland and Romania select their entries. It is expected that RTÉ will once again broadcast the show live on the internet.
RTÉ has also confirmed that around 150 entries have been submitted to its national selection process.
While most of the singers are songwriters who have submitted potential entries to Ireland's Eurovision selection are not going public on their intentions, one former Eurovision entrant that has declared his hand is Ireland's 2005 songwriter Karl Broderick. Karl wrote Love? which was performed in Kyiv,by Donna & Joe. While it didn't make the final, Karldidn't give up on Eurovision, despite saying that he would not enter the contest again, after the 2005 disappointment. Karl says the return of the old style Irish final prompted him to change his mind; "The only reason I decided to try again was because RTÉ changed the rules to allow songwriters to pick their own performer for the songs".
If its selected for the Eurosong final , Karl's song Missing You will be performed by model turned singer Michelle McGrath. Michelle has recently starred as "Snow White" alongside 1992 Eurovision winner Linda Martin in Broderick's production in Dublin.
If the rumours are true, Karlwill not the only former Irish Eurovision songwriter trying again in 2008.