Confusion reigns amongst viewers in Sweden, as two separate junior contests are held to two different international contests.
This Saturday, the Swedish selection for the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2006 will be held in the Globe Arena, Stockholm, and televised on TV4 from 20:00 CET. Then, on Wednesday 6th September, SVT will unveil its own ten finalists for the Lilla Melodifestivalen who will compete in October to be the Swedish candidate at the pan-Scandinavian junior contest to be held in November.
Two chances for Sweden
Sweden is the only country to be represented at both festivals this year, with SVT hosting the MGP Nordic for Swedish, Danish and Norwegian competitors. Only a week later, the winner of Saturday's TV4 final will represent the country in Bucharest at the Junior Eurovision Song Contest. Sweden had originally withdrawn with the other Scandinavian competitors after concerns about the appropriateness of an international competition for youngsters. However, JESC participation was saved by TV4, who stepped in to take the lead.
It is not the first time a country has been represented at the ESC and JESC by separate TV companies; in the UK, the broadcaster ITV had been responsible for participation rather than the BBC, the corporation which has traditionally supported the Eurovision Song Contest. However, commercial channels in Norway and Denmark have not yet followed the example of neighbouring Sweden, where rival broadcasters are keen to grab the largest chunk of the ratings.