Finland unveils new format for 2012
The Finnish broadcaster YLE starts today a new selection format to choose the Finnish entry. Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu or simply UMK (Contest for New Music) is the name of the new annual music contest. The winner of UMK will represent Finland at the Eurovision Song Contest in Baku.
The purpose of this new contest is to find the best Finnish song and artist. According to the producer of the show, Anssi Autio, "there are a lot of talented musicians and artists in Finland. Uuden Musiikin Kilpailu is a good and effective way for professional songwriters, as well as for new talents, to promote their music to a wider audience".
The contest is open to all songwriters and artists and the style of music is free. However, according to the rules, at least one of the songwriters and the leading vocalist must be a Finnish citizen or have a permanent residence in Finland.
YLE is accepting demos to the contest from today, 15th of August, until the end of September 2011. The demos can be submitted to the website of UMK where you can find the rest of the rules.
Final to take place in Helsinki in February
During January and February next year UMK will be shown on Finnish tv. After the assessment based on jury selections, auditions and club gigs, the top competitors will proceed to the final, which will be held in Helsinki in February. YLE promises that the final will be the biggest and most impressive music show of the year in Finland.
The winner of this final will represent Finland at the 2012 Eurovision Song Contest in Azerbaijan in May.
Finland won the competition in 2006 with Lordi's Hard Rock Hallelujah and their latest entry Da Da Dam performed by Paradise Oskar reached the Final in Düsseldorf this year placing 21st.