The BBC has announced today that it will shake things up for their Eurovision selection process ‘Eurovision: You Decide’, when it returns to our screens in February 2019. While a final date, competing artists and song titles haven’t been confirmed, the show will once again be hosted by the brilliant pairing of Mel Giedroyc and Måns Zelmerlöw. It will move from last year’s location (Brighton’s Dome) to Salford’s Media City (outside Manchester) in 2019.
This is the fourth year that the UK have used ‘You Decide’ to select their Eurovision artist and song. In the last three outings six artists competed with their specific individual songs, and a combination of jury and public votes decided the winner. This year the BBC have opted to change this format, and it all seems a little bit confused. An international jury has shortlisted three songs. Artists will then do battle singing the song in different styles, before the public will be asked to vote for their favourites.
Mel Balac (Eurovision: You Decide’s Executive Producer) remarked that the change in format: ‘…will give fans the chance to compare and contrast these fantastic songs in a fresh, new way and deliver the United Kingdom the artist it deserves to fly the flag out in Tel Aviv.’
Is this a well-thought-out tactical move to try something a bit different, or does it point more to a scaling back in an effort to cut costs? Only time will tell if the gamble will pay off. The UK have had an abysmal recent history in the Contest with only one top ten finish in the last fifteen years. In 2018 the UK were represented by SuRie. The singer was interrupted by a stage invasion during her performance of ‘Storm’ in the Grand Final. She turned down the opportunity to perform again at the end of the show and finished 24th of 26.
What do you make of the proposed changes to ‘You Decide’? Leave us a comment below!