Albania: The reason behind Samanta Karavella’s withdrawal from FiK 62!

In just two weeks from now, the second national selection of this Eurovision season will take place. As usual, Festivali i Këngës, will serve as the selection method for the Albanian act in Eurovision 2024, for the 20th edition in a row. While the preparations for the big, for the Albanian music and culture scene, festival are on fire, we had some quite interesting news regarding the withdrawals from the festival that we saw last month, which also indicate Albania’s direction for Eurovision 2024.

As we have previously informed you, following the announcement of the participants of the 62nd edition of Festivali i Këngës and during a press conference where the regulations were announced, two artists decided to withdraw. These two artists were Samanta Karavella, a five times participant in FiK, and Kejsi Tola, the winner of FiK 47 and the Albanian representative in Eurovision 2009.

The reasons behind Samanta’s withdrawal

During a interview on the Albanian TV show “Më lër të flas“, Samanta broke her silence about her decision to withdraw from this year’s FiK where she was due to participate with her song “N’majē“.

To begin with, Samanta mentions that even though she does not wish to elaborate more about FiK, she sees it as a duty to explain herself to her fans. Hence, she just gave a small explanation. According to Samanta, the reason behind her withdrawal was the organisers’ disapproval of her stage performance. The song with which she was to participate was supposed to be upbeat and rhythmical, necessitating a spectacular stage show. However, this did not meet FiK’s conservative standards.

Kejsi Tola

There was also a mystery behind the withdrawal of the former Eurovision participant, Kejsi Tola, bearing in mind the excitement of the Eurovision fandom on a possible return of hers.

Although Samanta speculated that the reasons behind Tola’s withdrawal might were the same as hers, it is now confirmed by the artist herself that “personal reasons” led her to this decision, reasons that remain unspecified.

Albania’s direction for Eurovision 2024

My stage performance was disapproved by FiK’s organisers as it did not meet the festival’s criteria” mentions Samanta. The festival’s criteria need to be elaborated more.

As Samanta mentions, the organizing committee of FiK 62 orientates to a Sanremo-type of contest, which is more musical and lyrical and less a spectacular TV show with impressive stage shows, pyros etc.

The aforementioned indicate that Albania aims to return to its Eurovision “basics”, selecting a ballad with impressive vocals, following their two past entries which were more rhythmical and upbeat.

Unfortunately, this strategy has already begun and will continue to cause controversy inside Albania, while successful artists decide to step back from a musical competition and from the country’s representation at a worldwide event, such as Eurovision. As long as the Albanina delegation does get more modernized, more and more famous and beloved around Europe artists will continue not giving a shot for the Albanian representation. Moreover, bearing in mind the return of the three-times FiK winner, Elsa Lila, which has never stepped at the Eurovision stage regardless winning last year’s edition, may cause troubles to RTSH, as she has been the broadcaster’s favorite three times already.

Festivali i Këngës 62

A total of 31 artists were shortlisted for FiK 62. Samanta’s and Kejsi Tola’s acts were replaced by the newcomers Irma Lepuri and PeterPan Quartet, while there was no announcement made regarding a possible replacement of another artist that withdrew, namely Sardi Strugaj.

Excluding Sardi Strugaj, the following thirty artists will compete:

  1. Stivi Ushe – Askush si ty
  2. Besa Kokëdhima – Zemën n’Dorë
  3. Mal Retkoceri – Çmendur
  4. Eldis Arrnjeti – Një kujtim
  5. Shpat Deda – S’mund t’jetoj pa ty
  6. Jehona Ponari – Evol
  7. PeterPan Quartet
  8. Festina Mejzini – Melos
  9. Kastro Zizo – 2073
  10. Luan Durmishi – Përsëritja
  11. Melodajn Mancaku – Nuk jemi ne
  12. Olsi Ballta – Unë
  13. Andi Tanko – Herë pas herë
  14. Sergio Hajdini – Uragan
  15. Santino De Bartolo – Dua të rri me ty
  16. Olimpia Smajlaj – Asaj
  17. Big Basta and Vesa Luma – Mbinatyrale
  18. Elsa Lila – Mars
  19. Jasmina Hako – Ti
  20. Michela Paluca – Për veten
  21. Anduel Kovaçi – Nan’
  22. Irma Lepori
  23. Erina and the Elementals – Jetën n’skaj
  24. Kleansa Susaj – Pikturë
  25. Arsi Bako – Zgjohu
  26. Tiri Gjoci – Në ëndërr
  27. Besa Krasniqi – Esenciale
  28. Bledi Kaso – Çdo gjë mbaroi
  29. Troy – Horizonti i ëndrrave
  30. Martina Serreqi – Vetëm ty

Just like last year, FiK 62 will have two separate winners. The winner of the jury voting will be crowned as the winner of the festival and the winner of the public vote will be the chosen one for the Albanian representation in the Eurovision Song Contest.

The 62nd edition of FiK will take place from December 19 to December 22, 2023 at Pallati i Kongresseve in Tirana. Last year’s winners of the public vote were Albina & Familja Kelmendi with their song “Duje”, gaining the right to represent Albania at the Eurovision Song Contest 2023 in Liverpool. Albina & Familja Kelmendi brought their country back to the Grand Final, finishing tenth in the public vote and twenty-second overall.

Stay tuned to EurovisionFun for all news!

Czechia: ESCZ 2024 took place tonight | Watch the performances and Vote!

Just a while ago, ESCZ 2024, the national final of Czechia, took place and the artists presented the songs with which they are vying to represent their country in Eurovision Song Contest 2024, in Malmö.

The hosts of the night were the well-known actor from Prague, Adam Mišík, and the Austrian representative in 2018, Cesár Sampson as a co-host.

The Performances

The seven finalists, presented their song, by performing them live and here are the perfromances:

  • Aiko“Pedestal”
  • Elly“The Angel’s Share”
  • Gianna Lei“Starlet”
  • Lenny “Good Enough”
  • MYDY“Red Flag Parade”
  • Tom Sean“Dopamine Overdose”
  • Tomas Robin “Out if My Mind”

The results will be announced on December 12

The voting started during the show and will go on until next Monday, December 11, with the winner being announced next Tuesday.

The winner will be determined by 100% publice vote:

  • 70% International Online Voting
  • 30% Czech Online Voting

If you want to vote for your favourite song and help Czechia select its representative, you just need to download the official Eurovision app, HERE!

Until we find out who will represent Czechia at Eurovision 2024, let’s remember the country’s participation in last year’s contest. The previous ESCZ winners and representatives of the Czech Republic at Eurovision 2023 were Vesna with the song “My Sister’s Crown” and they finished in 10th place:

Stay tuned on Eurovisionfun for all the news regarding the Czech participation at the Eurovision Song Contest 2024, in Malmö!

Denmark: A returning artist among contestants of DMGP 2024!

Dansk Melodi Grand Prix will remain as the Danish selection format for Eurovision 2024. Great changes are expected to come to the competition next year as a try to overturn the tables and bring Denmark back to the Grand Final after five years. The Danish broadcaster now aims at a younger audience, in order to select a more appealing and in trend Eurovision act.

In a recent interview with, Erik Struve Hansen, the project manager of the Danish competition, revealed that the eight songs and performers are already in place, however, everything is still secret. In early January, DR will reveal names and songs at a press conference. Erik, also made an interesting statement that at least one contestant has previously made a name for himself on a Eurovision stage. We will have to wait until the announcement of the eight competing entries to find out who that returning artist is.

DMGP 2024 will take place on February 17, 2024, while the participating songs are expected to be revealed about three weeks prior to the show, possibly in late January.

Despite not being the public’s favorite, Reiley won the ticket to Liverpool in 2023. He performed his song “Breaking My Heart” in the second semi-final, failing to qualify and scoring only 6 points, all from Iceland.

Stay tuned at EurovisionFun for all the latest news regarding the Eurovision Song Contest!


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Israel: Everything that happened in the third HaKokhav Haba episode!

The third episode of HaKokhav Haba (special edition), the talent show through which the Israeli representative for Eurovision 2024 will be selected, aired on Sunday, December 3rd!

Four more artists qualified for the next round of HaKokhav Haba and are still vying for the Israeli representation in Malmö. The broadcaster determined they could broadcast the third episode of the show just one day after the second one, without making any statements beforehand.

Out of the five auditions in the third episode, four qualified for the next round. Assi Azar and Rotem Sela, who have been hosting HaKokhav Haba since 2014, are the show’s presenters. The jury is made up of Eden Hasson, Shiri Maimon, Itay Levy, Assaf Amdorsky, Ran Dankar, and Keren Pels.

Shaoli Grinlik

Currently fighting Hamas in Gaza, 25-year-old Shaoli is a member of the Israeli military forces. His performance was well-received by most of the judges, as well as by the majority of the studio audience. He advanced to the next round of the competition with 83%.

Michelle Shimonov

Michelle, who is 26 years old, currently works as a waitress, although she aspires to be an actress and singer. The judges all voted for her and gave her favorable feedback on the tone of her voice. She advanced to the next round after receiving 88% of the vote.

Ido Bartel

Ido Bartel is 39 years old. She has acted in numerous TV shows in Israel. In addition to being a businessman, tens of thousands of followers on Instagram watch him regularly showcasing his singing prowess. Among his greatest interests are musical mashups. Despite not receiving a unanimous vote from the judges, Ido advanced to the next round with 80% of the vote.

Adele Seltzer

Adele, a 19-year-old resident of southern Israel, relocated to Tel Aviv due to the ongoing conflict. Her performance was considered by the judges to be among the best thus far this season. Many told her they could totally picture her performing on the Eurovision stage. Adele advanced to the next round with an 87%.

In the upcoming episode—the airdate of which is still unknown— additional auditions will be broadcasted. Israel qualified for the finals every year from 2015 to 2020 through HaKokhav HaBa, and Netta won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2018 with the song “Toy”.

Israel was represented this year by Noa Kirel and the song “Unicorn”, which came in third place with 362 points overall.

Stay tuned on EurovisionFun to stay up to date on all the latest news about the world’s largest music competition!





Czechia: ESCZ 2024 Final takes place tonight!

The Czech Republic chooses its representative in Eurovision 2024 tonight, as in a few hours the Grand Final of ESCZ 2024 will take place.

ČT, the public broadcaster of Czechia, decided to organize a national final, for the sixth year in a row (with the exception of 2021), in order to select their representative for Eurovision 2024. The public broadcaster selected seven artists that are going to compete in the Grand Final of ESCZ 2024.

The hosts of the nationl final, will be Adam Mišík, and also the Austrian representative of 2018, Cesár Sampson will be a co-host.

The final of ESCZ 2024 will take place tonight at 20:15. The national final will be broadcasted by the official Eurovision YouTube channel and you can watch it HERE.

The participants of ESCZ 2024:

In the following list you can watch the seven artists taking part in ESCZ 2024:

  • Aiko
  • Elly
  • Gianna Lei
  • Lenny
  • MYDY
  • Tom Sean
  • Tomas Robin

The competing songs were meant to be revealed during the national final, however some of them are already available online:


The five artists will perform their songs live during the Czech national final, with voting opening during the evening.

The final result will be determined by 70% of the voting of the international public and 30% of the voting of the Czech public, a clear indication of the importance given by the Czech delegation to the preferences of foreign Eurofans who will also have the final say during the three nights in May in Sweden. Subsequently, the final result and the representative of the Czech Republic in Sweden will be announced.

Until we find out who will represent Czechia at Eurovision 2024, let’s remember the country’s participation in last year’s contest. The previous ESCZ winners and representatives of the Czech Republic at Eurovision 2023 were Vesna with the song “My Sister’s Crown” and they finished in 10th place:

Stay tuned on Eurovisionfun for all the news regarding the Czech participation at the Eurovision Song Contest 2024, in Malmö!

Italy: The first betting odds for Sanremo 2024!

Just a couple of hours before, the famous Italian TV presenter Amadeus announced all the 27 artists that are going to compete in “Festival di Sanremo 2024”, which is going to take place from the 6th of February up until to the 10th of February; the Festival’s winning artist will gain the right to represent Italy at the Eurovision Song Contest 2024, as long as this is desired.

However and no matter the fact that the Festival di Sanremo 2024 is yet to come, the first betting odds have been released as you can see below:

So according to the bookmakers and the first odds, the most favorite to win are the Negramaro with 5.00 betting performance, while in the second position are both Annalisa and Eurovision’s former runner up and participant Mahmood with 6.00 betting performance equally. They are followed by Altro, Diodato, Emma and Geolier, who fill in the first seven positions up until now.

Nevertheless, take a brief look at the artists who are going to participate in “Festival di Sanremo 2024”, until the release of the official results on February of 2024, by reading the following article:


What do you think about the first betting odds of “Festival di Sanremo 2024”? Let us know down in the comments’ section!

Stay tuned on Eurovisionfun for even more news!

Italy: The artists’ initial reactions upon their participation announcement at Sanremo 2024!

Amadeus revealed the lineup for the 74th edition of the Sanremo Festival just a few hours ago. Many previous winners, successful artists of the Italian music scene as well as Italian superstars make up the lineup, who will compete for the Golden Lion from February 6 to 10 at Sanremo’s Teatro Ariston.

The artists were extremely anxious until Amadeus’ announcement of the competing acts. The chosen artists had no idea whether they’d be on the Amadeus shortlist, as shown on their social media posts, with some of their reactions being literally epic!


Bigmama, despite being only 24 years old, was able to accomplish one of her greatest dreams, to participate at the Sanremo Festival. She is a symbol for many plus-sized women, but she is also an activist for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community in Italy, which adores her.

Bigmama is unable to control her joy and excitement when she hears her name from Amadeus and falls down sobbing in the video posted on Twitter.

Renga and Nek

The classic Italian pop-music enthusiasts just found their favorites on Renga and Nek. It will not be their first time on the stage of Sanremo. Renga took first place at Sanremo in 2005, while Nek finished in second place in 2015. Nek has also given us the now-iconic “Laura non c’e” during his 1997 debut at the festival, which, although it did not win, went on to become a worldwide hit.

When Amadeus announced their participation, they were in the kitchen getting ready for lunch as their faces lit up.

Mr. Rain

Mr Rain’s participation in this year’s Sanremo festival gave him the necessary boost in his career, in addition to a third place finish. Mr Rain returns to the Festival in 2024 following a successful season with sold out shows all over Italy. Mr Rain’s intentions are revealed in the laconic video he uploaded.

Alessandra Amoroso

Sanremo’s biggest surprise was definitely Alessandra Amoroso. Not only Amadeus, but also his predecessors, have been begging her to perform at the Sanremo Festival for many years. Everyone’s pleas were heard this time, and Alessandra will participate at this huge musical celebration.

Along with a photo showing her back, a small text accompanied her post on X following the announcement of her participation, mentioning:

With an eye on everything that will happen from now on. As if it were the first time on stage. On that stage for the first time.

Il Volo

Following their extremely successful world tour, Il Volo will return once again to Sanremo aiming to win. The Amadeus’ announcement found them in flight, but that did not stop them from watching the artists’ announcement live.


Negramaro is one of Italy’s most well-known pop bands and they are also the big favorites to win, according to the early betting. The group appears to be taking their participation in Sanremo 2024 very seriously, as evidenced by a special video for their participation.


Having already won the festival twice in just four years, Mahmood will claim the the victory once again, while he’s a favorite of the press. With a quite humorous post, Mahmood reacted to his participation at the Sanremo 2024.

The winner of the 2023 edition of the Sanremo Festival was Marco Mengoni with his song “Due Vite“. Mengoni accepted the RAI invitation and represented his home country at the Eurovision stage for the second time, finishing 4th overall. His single “Due Vite” went to become a major success in Italy and was recently awarded as a five-times platinum record.

Stay tuned to EurovisionFun for all news regarding the 2024 edition of the Sanremo Festival!

Italy: Amadeus reveals the participants of Sanremo 2024!

Being his last feestival as presenter and artisitic director of Sanremo, Amadeus wants to amaze everyone, and of course he succeeded without a doubt, judging from the roster of artists that will take part in the historic Festival di Sanremo, he just revealed through TG!.

In Teatro Ariston, in the small city of Liguria, the 74th Fetsival di Sanremo will take place with 30 participants, and not 23 as was initially announced. From the 6th to the 10th of February, not only Italy, but the whole lot of Europe, is turned to Sanremo, the small city that contains all the modern music history of the country.

Amadeus kept his promise and he announced the strongest line-up, according to the artists’ names, maybe in the whole hostory of Saneremo. All the Italin music scene, with previous winners, artists with countless hits, with millions of followers in social media, all claiming the Golden Lion as well as the ticket to Eurovision 2024.

The Participants

  • Fiorella Mannoia
  • Geolier
  • Dargen d’Amico
  • Emma
  • Fred de Palma
  • Angelina Mango
  • La Sad
  • Diodato
  • Il Tre
  • Francesco Renga & Nek
  • Sangiovanni
  • Alfa
  • Il Volo
  • Alessandra Amoroso
  • Gazzell
  • Negramaro
  • Irama
  • Rose Villian
  • Mahmmod
  • Loredana Bertè
  • The Kolors
  • Big Mama
  • Ghali
  • Annalisa
  • Mr. Rain
  • Maninni
  • Ricchi e Poveri

We remind you that the three winners of Sanremo Giovani, which is set to take place in December 19, will be added to this cast but with a whole new song.

The Program of Sanremo 2024


The 30 songs will be listened for the first time, with the results of that day being 100% determined by the press, TV and web jury – no elimination


The first 15 songs will be listened again, with the results of that day being determined by a dual voting: 50% televoting and 50% radio jury – no elimination


The last 15 songs will be listened again, with the results of that day being determined by a dual voting: 50% televoting and 50% radio jury – no elimination


The 30 acts will perform (alongside a guest act or acts of their choice) a cover version of either an italian or an non-italian song with the result of that day being determined a threesome voting: 34% televoting, 33% press, TV and web jury and 33% radio jury – no elimination


The 30 songs will be heard again, with the results of that day being 100% determined by the televoting After that, the results of the day will join those of Sanremo 2024’s previous 4 days.

The sum of all those results will then determine the top-5 (even the 4th day will count, despite the fact the acts sing covers as opposed to their original songs) (Note that during each show, they reveal a part of the results from those days just before the end of the current show… and they show only a part of the provisory general results either just before the end of the current show or at the start of the following show) – The top-5 will either perform their entries again or a recap will be shown and then the winner will be determined by a threesome voting: 34% televoting, 33% press, TV and web jury and 33% radio jury


Any of the 30 acts (and its respective record labels) who are interested in going to the Eurovision Song Contest 2024 will have to fill a special form concerning ESC – The winning act of Sanremo 2024 is automatically considered to be the Eurovision 2024 act. The winning act also has first refusal on that matter, though – in case it doesn’t accept going to Eurovision at all, the show’s organizing committee will then pick the Eurovision 2024 act according to their own criteria (this is especially important to those who have filled the form that determines its interest in going to ESC)

Sanremo 2024, will have different hosts every night alongside Amadeus:

  • Marco Mengoni, the Italian representative for Eurovision 2023 will be the co-host of Night 1.
  • Giorgia, a well-known Italian singer who has participated in Sanremo four times and was crowned its winner in 1995, will be the co-host of Night 2.
  • Teressa Mannino, Italian actress and comedian, will co-host Night 3.
  • Lorella Cuccarini, Italian dancer, TV presenter, singer and actress, will co-host Night 4.
  • Fiorello, Italian actor, will co-host among with Amadeus the big night of the Festival’s Final.

So for those who are fans of the Italian music scene, are not bored of the endless TV shows and are ready for a week of night and day, we at Eurovisionfun will keep you the best company!

Alongside the outstanding line-up, the stage of the next Sanremo was also revealed and it’s as amazing as ever:

The previous winner of Sanremo and Italy’s representative at Eurovision 2024, was Marco Mengoni, with his song “Due Vite”, ending up in fourth place of the Grand Final with 350 points:

What do you think of the finalists of Festival di Sanremo 2024? Write us in the comments below!

Stay tuned on Eurovisionfun for all the news regarding the Italian  participation at the Eurovision Song Contest 2024, in Malmö!

Israel: What happened in the second episode of HaKokhav Haba!

Last night, Saturday 2/12, was broadcast the second episode of HaKokhav Haba (special edition), the talent show through which will emerge the next representative who will fly the flag of Israel in the 2024 Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö, Sweden.

Three more artists advanced to the next round of HaKokhav Haba, continuing to claim the ticket to Malmö. Two weeks after the airing of the first episode, and after much tension and emotion caused by the release of dozens of hostages by Hamas, on Saturday the organizers thought they could broadcast the second episode of the show.

In the second episode we watched four audtions, however only three artists qualified to the next round. We remind you that the presenters of HaKokhav Haba are Assi Azar and Rotem Sela who have been in this position since 2014, while the members of the jury are Shiri Maimon, Itay Levy, Assaf Amdorsky, Ran Dankar and Keren Pels with a new addition being Eden Hasson.


Moriah is 26 years old and comes from the southern settlements on the border with Gaza, where about 1,400 Israeli citizens were massacred by the Hamas terrorist strike. Moriah dances and sings but doesn’t have much stage experience. The judges were moved by her performance, as was the audience. With 96% of positive votes, she advanced to the next phase.

Yonathan Biton

Yonathan, 28 years old, sang with a group of six other people. Although he did not know that the winner of the show will represent Israel at Eurovision 2024, he happily accepted this invitation wanting to spread “light” in Europe. The judges thought that the covers he makes are very original and gave him their positive vote. With 86%, he also passed to the next round of the process.

Arik Sinai

Arik Sinai, 74 years old, is already a very successful and well-known artist in Israel. His success started in the 80s with many hits, while his career even extends to the USA! He is participating in HaKokhav Haba because he was approached by the production team who had already tried twice to make it with no success. At the end of his performance the judges stood up and gave him a standing ovation. He does not believe that age is an obstacle and will do his best to reach Malmö. With 90% of the votes, he advanced to the next phase.

HaKokhav Haba continues with more auditions in the next episode, which so far no one knows when this will be aired. Through HaKokhav HaBa, Israel managed to advance to the final of our favorite competition every year from 2015 to 2020, while in 2018 Netta was also the winner of Eurovision with the song “Toy”.

This year at Eurovision 2023 in Liverpool Israel was represented by the fiery Noa Kirel and the song “Unicorn” who gave the Middle Eastern country a third place in the Grand Final, collecting 362 points

Stay tuned on Eurovisionfun for all the updates around the 2024 Eurovision Song Contest!

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Albania: Another performer drops out of Festivali i Këngës 62!

Following Kejsi Tola and Samanta, one more performer withdrew from Festivali i Këngës 62.

More specifically, Sardi Strugaj, whose song “Boshatisur” was chosen to be performed at this year’s Festivali i Këngës, announced earlier today that he was pulling out of the popular Albanian competition. Presently, the singer is taking part in the Albanian version of “Dancing With The Stars,” wherein his withdrawal was announced.

Two emerging artists took the position of Kejsi Tola and Samanta. It is still unclear, though, if Sardi Strugaj will be replaced by a different performer.

Festivali i Këngës 62 is set to take place from 19 to 22 December. The country’s Eurovision representative will be chosen by the TV audience, and the festival winner will be chosen by the jury.

Stay tuned on EurovisionFun to stay up to date on all the latest news about the world’s largest music competition!