Three weeks after its scheduled start on October 31, the HaKokhav HaBa (Rising Star) talent show, which will determine Israel’s representative in the 68th Eurovision Song Contest to be held in Malmö, Sweden, next May, begins tonight.
The armed conflict between Israel and Hamas has led to the so far delayed start of the talent show, with Keshet 12′s makers deciding not to air HaKokhav HaBa until now following the outcry from the Israeli media and the Israeli people for the show’s scheduled premiere at the end of October.
In fact, the title of HaKokhav HaBa is being changed and will now be called The Next Star – Special Edition 2023. However, the name change does not change anything regarding Israel’s participation in Eurovision 2024, as the winner of The Next Star will be the one who will receive the anointment to represent Israel in Malmö.
The presenters of the show will be Assi Azar and Rotem Sela who have been in this position since 2014. The jury members will be Shiri Maimon, Itay Levy, Assaf Amdorsky, Ran Dankar and Keren Pels while Eden Hasson is a new addition.
Through HaKokhav HaBa, Israel managed to qualify for the final of the beloved contest every year from 2015 to 2020, and in 2018 Netta was also the winner of Eurovision with the song “Toy“.
This year Israel at Eurovision 2023 in Liverpool was represented by the explosive Noa Kirel and her song “Unicorn” which gave the Middle Eastern country third place in the Grand Final, scoring 362 points.