Melodifestivalen had moved from the Örnsköldsvik in the north east of Sweden to the center this week. The little town of Sandviken and its Göransson Arena had the honour of hosting the second semi-final of the immensely successful Swedish selection, one of the most watched events in Sweden every year. Only two spots for the final were available for the eight contestants, so 6 artists had to leave the hall disappointed (qualifiers in bold):
Eric Saade - Manboy
Andra Generationen & Dogge - Hippare Hoppare
Anna Maria Espinosa - Innan Alla Ljusen Brunnit Ut
Highlights & MiSt - Come And Get Me Now
Pauline - Sucker For Love
Andreas Johnson - We Can Work It Out
Kalle Moraeus & Orsa Spelmän - Underbart
Hanna Lindblad - Manipulated
This week saw a mix of Melodifestivalen veterans and newcomers. Andra Generationen and Andreas Johnson had taken part in the selection before, with Mr. Johnson reaching the final both in 2006 and 2007. He had also tried to win a ticket in a duet with former Eurovision Song Contest winner Carola in 2008, but the twosome were spectacularly voted out then. Andra Generationen also participated in the 2008 Melodifestivalen but missed out on a final spot then. The rest of the artists were all new names to the festival.
Eric Saade and Andreas Johnson were the incredibly happy winners of the two direct tickets for the Swedish final tonight, but also Pauline and Kalle Moraeus & Orsa Spelmän will have another chance to qualify in the so-called Second Chance round which will take place on the 6th of March in Örebro.
Next week, the Melodifestivalen circus will move to Gothenburg where 8 more artists will have a chance to grab a spot for the final.
Sweden managed to reach the final of the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest with Malena Ernman's La Voix which was ultimately placed 21st.
Eurovision.tv's Gustav Dahlander had the chance to talk to Andreas Johnson, one of the qualifiers this week, and a veteran in Melodifestivalen history. Listen to what he's got to say!