Confirmed: MSFE final on January 26

by Victor Hondal 80 views

After the MaltaSong board decided to bring forward the Malta Song for Europe shows to January, today it has been confirmed that the Maltese national final for Eurovision 2008 will be held on January 26. The semifinal will take place two days before and the Fairs and Conventions Centre in Ta'Qali has been once again elected as venue of Malta Song for Europe.

As reported a week ago, the MaltaSong Board was considering those dates due to the Maltese general elections, that will be held in February. Then, a MaltaSong spokesperson stated that those dates were "more than likely to be the final new dates".

Today, Mr. Robert Abela, chairman of the Board of MaltaSong, has admitted that there have been some difficulties in scheduling the dates and deciding the venue. Finally, those problems were sorted out and today the dates and venue have been officially announced. The semifinal of Malta Song for Europe will be held on January 24 and the final on January 26, both of them at Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre, in Ta'Qali. The eliminatory stage, when the 36 participating songs will be narrowed down to 16, will be held on January 9 at the Salesian Theatre, in Sliema. It is expected that about 8 songs will qualify for the final.

This year's Maltese national selection will be hosted by John Demanuele, Ruth Casingena and Chiara, Maltese representative in Eurovision 1998 and 2005. She was very close to win the both times she entered: she finished 3rd in Birmingham 1998 with The one that I love and 2nd in Kiev 2005 with Angel.

The voting system throughout the Malta Song for Europe shows will be a mix of jury and televote in a proportion of 20% – 80%. The televote lines will be open for 30 minutes, and every phone number is allowed to vote up to two times. There will be different ways to cast the votes: by fixed phone calls, mobile phone calls and SMS. Moreover, both the eliminatory phase and the semifinal will be judged by a foreign jury.

Some details on the ticket prices have also been revealed: LM 10.00 (€ 23) and LM 12.00 (€ 28) both for the semifinal and the final. Some VIP tickets will be available for the final night, at LM 15.00 (€ 35). There will be 1,000 seats for use.