As one of the Big Five, Italy automatically get to compete in the Eurovision Finals. Since their debut in the first contest in 1956, Italy have won twice (Gigliola Cinquetti in 1964 and Toto Cutugno in 1990), come second on four occasions (Franca Raimondi in 1956, Tonina Torrielli in 1956, Gigliola Cinquetti in 1974 and Raphael Gualazzi in 2011), they have also finished third five times including their most recent attempt with Il Volo in 2015. Italy didn’t participate in the contest between 1994 and 1996 and again from 1998 to 2010. What are their plans for 2016?
Italian broadcaster RAI confirmed that the performer that will represent Italy at the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest would be selected from the competing artists at the Sanremo Music Festival 2016.
Although the winner of the Sanremo contest will be given first refusal to represent Italy in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest, this is not a given. If the winner were to refuse, or were not available, the organisers of the event reserve the right to choose another participant via their own criteria. Sanremo will take place between 9–13 February 2016 with the winner being selected on the last day of the festival.
20 acts competed in Italy’s Sanremo Contest. Click the links below to see the results from each night of the contest. The final night results are listed below:
Big Artists Contest
Stadio – “Un giorno mi dirai”
Francesca Michielin – “Nessun grado di separazione”
Giovanni Caccamo & Deborah Iurato – “Via da qui”
Enrico Ruggeri – “Il primo amore non si scorda mai”
Lorenzo Fragola – “Infinite volte”
Patty Pravo – “Cieli immensi”
Clementino – “Quando sono lontano”
Noemi – “La borsa di una donna”
Rocco Hunt – “Wake Up”
Arisa – “Guardando il cielo”
Annalisa – “Il diluvio universale”
Elio e le Storie Tese – “Vincere l’odio”
Valerio Scanu – “Finalmente piove”
Alessio Bernabei – “Noi siamo infinito”
Dolcenera – “Ora o mai più (le cose cambiano)”
Irene Fornaciari – “Blu”
Although Stadio won the contest and automatically earned the right to represent Italy in the Eurovision Song Contest, the band turned this opportunity down. It wasn’t until the following morning at a press conference, that it was announced that the runner up Francesca Michielin will be the Italian representative in Sweden in May. It is expected that she will sing her Sanremo song ‘Nessun grado di separazione’ at Eurovision, but this has yet to be confirmed.