Who will Estonia pick to follow Ott Lepland?
Estonian broadcaster, ERR has announced that their national selection for the 2013 Eurovision Song Contest will take place on the 2nd of March. Entries can be submitted till mid-December.
Basing on the success of their national selection called Eesti Laul (Song of Estonia) , ERR is now starting the fifth season of the show. Once again it'll be a live show with two semi-finals and a grand final.
Songs can be submitted by the 10th of December. After it, a professional jury picks 20 semi-finalists and will announce the list by the 14th of December. The semi-finals will be held on 16th and 23rd of February, the final on the 2nd of March.
"We give our best to help the winner to gain plenty of international contacts" - Mart Normet, Head of Entertainment
"Eesti Laul is a great way to make yourself be heard and gain experience in front of a large TV audience," says the Executive Producer, Heidy Purga. She has been leading the project since 2009.
Mart Normet, Head of Entertainment at ERR's TV side points out how their 2012 winner, Ott Lepland has gained popularity all over Europe after winning Eesti Laul and participating at the Eurovision Song Contest in Baku with his song Kuula.
"We give our best to help the winner of the contest as well as other successful participants to gain plenty of international contacts," Normet adds.
Open for local musicians only
However, as has been the case since 2009, only entries by local authors are accepted.
"There is lot's of yet undiscovered talent in Estonia. That's why our main aim is to foster and promote local authors and musicians." Normet explains. "We encourage each creative unit to deliver their very own sound, music and lyrics to the contest. We try to avoid "average Eurovision-pop" songs"."
The Estonian national selection format has been a runaway hit since its introduction in 2009, with high ratings and many of its songs dominating the Estonian music charts.
It has also qualified Estonia to the Final of the Eurovision Song Contest three times in the last four years.