Israeli Pop Idol finalists for Eurovision 2008

by Itamar Barak 160 views

Israeli newspaper, Yediot Ahronot and Ynet.co.il report today that IBA and the producing company of the Israeli Pop Idol series have agreed on a cooperation in which one of the 3 finalists of this season will represent Israel in the 2008 Eurovision Song Contest.

It now seems that IBA's hesitations whether or not to participate in next year's Eurovision Song Contest in Belgrade are over, as the Israeli broadcaster has decided indeed to take part again.

According to today's report in Yediot Ahronot, IBA's head of entertainment, Yoav Ginay, has reached an agreement with Israeli Pop Idol's (Kohav Nolad) producers. In accordance with this agreement, one of the 3 finalists of Kohav Nolad's current season will automatically be selected to represent Israel in Serbia. "This is one of the most interesting national selection procedure we can think of", said Ginay to the newspaper. It should be mentioned, that this cooperation is unique, since IBA and Channel 2 (broadcaster of Kohav Nolad) are adversaries.

It is said that the main reasons for IBA's approach to Kohav Nolad are the lowest viewing figures of therecent Eurovision Song Contest and the lack of budget to produce a decent national selection in 2008. Israel was one of the most successful Eurovision Song Contest competitors throughout the 70s (2 wins), 80s and 90s (1 win). In recent years, fortunes have fallen sharply, the only strong result since 1999 being Shiri Maimon's 4th place in 2005, and she was a Pop Idol finalist in 2003.

Next year's Israeli participant at the Eurovision Song Contest will have to sing first at the contest's semifinal, due to Teapacks 24th position in the semifinal in Helsinki.