Estonia reveals 20 hopefuls, two disqualified

For 2011, ERR decided to go bigger with the third edition of the selections and add two semi-finals to the previously single show event. They will all be held in consecutive weeks in February.

Today, a professional jury picked a total of 20 songs out of 140 submissions and the list was revealed in the daily magazine show Ringvaade, hosted by the frequent Estonian commentator for Europe's favourite TV-show, Marko Reikop and his editor, Anu Välba.

The list, according to the Executive Producer of Eesti Laul, Heidy Purga is as follows:

  • All & Now - Performed by Rolf Roosalu - Written by Rolf Roosalu, Liis Lass
  • Baby Had You - Victoria - Viktoriya Suslova, Stanislav Bulganin
  • Be My Saturday Night - Noorkuu - Mart Vainu
  • Don't Want Anything - Jana Kask - Jakko Maltis, Jana Kask
  • Hoppa-Pa-Rei! - Ithaka Maria - Ithaka Maria Rahula, Peeter Pruuli
  • I Wanna Meet Bob Dylan - Outloudz - Stig Rästa, Fred Krieger
  • Jagatud Öö - Uku Suviste - Rein Rannap, Indrek Hirv
  • Kes Ei Tantsi, On Politsei - Elmayonesa - Nicolas Behler, Nora Reitel, Helen Heinmäe
  • Lapsed Ja Lennukid - Ans. Andur - Madis Aesma, Mihkel Kirss, Gert Pajuväli, Madis Kirss
  • Lubadus - Kait Tamra - Kait Tamra
  • My Melody - Sofia Rubina - Sofia Rubina, Talis Paide
  • Rahu, Ainult Rahu - Sõpruse Puiestee and Merili Varik - Allan Vainola, Mait Vaik
  • Rockefeller Street - Getter Jaani - Sven Lõhmus
  • Smile - Mid - Markus Robam
  • St. Cabah - Shirubi Ikazuchi - Silvi Pilt
  • The Storm - Mimicry - Paul Lepasson, Timmo Linnas, Kene Vernik, Jaanus Telvar
  • Valss - Jaan Pehk - Jaan Pehk
  • Veel On Aega - Marilyn Jurman, Karl Kanter - Marilyn Jurman, Karl K
  • Second Chance - Tiiu Kiik - Tiiu Kiik
  • Unemati - Meister ja Mari - Mari Meentalo

Janne Saar's song was disqualified due to the reason it had been released before the allowed date of the 1st of September. Tiiu Kiik, last year's finalist, replaces her with the song Second Chance. Another song was disqualified on the 23rd of December when it was revealed the song by Laika Virgin was already revealed in the evening of the 31st of August, hours before the official deadline for revealing songs.

Several names are well known, and a number of artists have already have taken part in the Estonian national selection for the Eurovision Song Contest - Mimicry (2010), Rolf Roosalu (2010, 2009, 2008), Ithaka Maria (Co-wrote the Estonian entry in 1998, and participated in the Estonian selection in 2003, 2004, 2009), Noorkuu (2006), Stig Rästa & Fred Krieger (2009), Rein Rannap (2008), Janne Saar (2009), Sofia Rubina (2006), Jaan Pehk (2009), Jarek Kasar (2009).

Also participating is the winner of the 2008 Estonian version of Pop Idol - Jana Kask - as well as Sven Lõhmus, the composer of the most successful Estonian entry in the last 5 years -  Rändajad in 2009 - which finished 6th. Uku Suviste has also become one of the most popular singers in Estonia, after doing very well at the New Wave song contest in Latvia.

"Compared to last years, it was much more equal. If we just had to pick just ten songs this time then we wouldn't have finished today. The participants were all very equal,"  said jury member Toomas Puna from Sky Plus, one of the most popular radio stations in Estonia.

The first semi-finals will be broadcast from the studios of ERR, respectively on the 12th and 19th of February and the final of the selection will be hosted from the Nokia Concert Hall - the same arena where the 2010 European Film Awards were held - on the 26th of February.

The final winner will be picked by a televote, preceeded by a shared vote between the viewers and a professional jury. The show will be once again hosted by Märt Avandi (who also hosted the European Film Awards this year together with one of the hosts of next year's Eurovision Song Contest - Anke Engelke) and Ott Sepp.

In 2010, Estonia failed to qualify for the Final of the Eurovision Song Contest with the song Siren, performed by Malcolm Lincoln. Despite that, he's managed to build a successful career afterwards.

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