Having been one of the first countries to officially confirm their presence at the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest, it’s time for Estonia to reveal their plans for their upcoming participation in Lisbon. The broadcaster ETV is going to use their national selection show Eesti Laul in order to pick up their Eurovision entry, as the song submission process has already begun.
What about the 10th Eesti Laul?
According to an official press release from the broadcaster, ETV is proud to host this show for the 10th time and to give the opportunity to the best musicians and artists from the country to show their talent in Estonia and beyond.
The deadline for the candidate artists to submit their entries concludes on 1 November, at 15:00 (local time) at Gonsiori 27, Tallinn valvelauda. About the current submission process, the producer of the show Mart Normet made the following statements:
Everyone is welcome! It doesn’t matter if you’re an established artist or a complete newcomer – the most important thing is that your song gives us something unique in 180 seconds. Eesti Laul is a celebration of Estonian music and has grown into an Estonian institution. It is our aim that we showcase a wide variety of Estonian artists that are bravely representing themselves and their music.
Rules regarding the show
ETV’s announcements also include the regulations that both the artists and their songs have to obey, in order to be accepted by the broadcaster.
The lyrics and the music of each participating song cannot have been released before 1 September, something that is also an established requirement from the EBU.
The maximum duration of each entry is 3 minutes, as usual. Each author or group of authors is able to submit up to 3 songs and one singer cannot present more than 3 acts in the national final show.
When it comes to non-Estonian participants, ETV welcomes everyone to Eesti Laul. However, at least the half team members of each participating act have to be Estonian citizens or residents.
ETV will be announcing the full list of the selected songs on 19 and 20 December via their official website eestilaul.ee.
Eesti Laul will consist of two semi-finals, scheduled to take place on 10 and 17 February respectively and the final evening which will be taking place on 3 March at the Saku Suurhall, that has also been the venue for the Eurovision Song Contest 2002.
According to the CEO of Saku Suurhall, Tarmo Hõbe, almost half of the venue is already sold out for the final evening. Tickets for the show can be booked here.
Estonia at Eurovision
The Baltic nation made its debut in 1994, three years after the dissolution of the former Soviet Union, where it used to belong. Estonia achieved the Eurovision victory seven years later, in 2001, when Tanel Padar, Dave Benton & 2XL won the contest singing an “invitation to party” entry, called Everybody. This has been the only victory of Estonia to date.
The country has struggled to qualify to the Grand Final, since the introduction of the semi-finals in 2004. Estonia has missed 9 finals and has reached the Top 10 only thrice since, with the last time being in 2015, as they came 7th.
The most recent Eesti Laul winners are Kooti Tome & Laura, with their ballad song Verona. Despite being a favorable song among the fans, it didn’t manage to progess to Kyiv’s 2017 final, as it received a 14th place in the second semi-final and 85 points.