All you need to know for Monday's draw!

All you need to know for Monday's draw!
Logo of the 2008 Eurovision Song Contest
This Monday, we switch to the host city of this year's Eurovision Song Contest for the first time, to determine which country takes place in which of the two Semi-Finals. The live show takes place at Belgrade's City Hall, and is being hosted by Serbian broadcaster RTS. The programme will be streamed live through Eurovision.tv's esctv, so make sure you tune in at 13:00 CET!

How are the pots composed?

The 38 countries represented in the Semi-Finals will be drawn from six pots, based on geographic location and mathematical voting patterns since 2004. This will make the outcome less predictable, and the two Semi-Final shows more exciting! "We did not want to divide Europe in east and west, as some suggested us to do. This contest is about uniting, not dividing," Svante Stockselius, Exective Supervisor of the contest said. The voting results were analyzed by the contest's pan-European televoting partner Digame.

Four pots contain the names of six countries, two pots contain envelopes with the names of seven countries. Half of the countries in the pots will be drawn into the first Semi-Final (on the 20th of May), the other half into the second Semi-Final (on the 22nd of May). The Semi-Final allocation draw will be carried out by dancers from the National Dance Ensemble KOLO.

A sneak peak into the pots!

Eurovision.tv can exclusively reveal you which countries are grouped in which pot.

Draw pots

What about the pots with seven countries?

Out of each pot, three countries will be taking part in the first Semi-Final, and three in the second. At the beginning of the draw, two envelopes with 'Semi-Final 1' and 'Semi-Final 2' will be drawn. The country left in Pot 5 takes part in the Semi-Final that is written in the first envelope. The country left in Pot 6 takes part in the Semi-Final that is written in the second envelope.

Some entertainment!

Besides the official procedure, the draw show also features some high-class entertainment. Željko Joksimović, who finished second at the 2004 Eurovision Song Contest with Lane Moje and composed Hari Mati Hari's 2006 Eurovision Song Contest entry Lejla for Bosnia & Herzegovina, will perform during the draw show.

A little more work...

France, Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom and host country Serbia are automatically qualified for the Final. So, there will also be a draw to decide which of the two Semi-Finals broadcasters from these countries will be obliged to air, and in which the audience in these countries can vote. Two of the 'Big Four' (France, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom) will be obligated to broadcast the first Semi-Final, the other two to broadcast the second Semi-Final. Finally, it will be decided in which Semi-Final Serbia will vote. Zeljko Joksimović will conduct this part of the draw. It is up to the broadcasters from all participating countries to decide if they also broadcast the Semi-Final they are not voting in.

What about the running order?

A second draw, to decide upon the starting order of the songs in each Semi-Final and the Final, will be conducted - as usual - at the Heads of Delegation meeting on 17-18 March in Belgrade.

How to qualify for the Final?

In each Semi-Final, televoters from the countries taking part in that Semi-Final pick nine participants who qualify for the Final, while the highest ranked non-qualified country of the back-up jury results also proceeds to the Final. Eventually, 25 countries will take part in the Final on the 24th of May.

Who decides in the Final?

In the Final, all 43 countries will be voting to determine the winner of the 53rd Eurovision Song Contest.


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