Finland's broadcaster YLE has decided that the format of next year's Finnish national final will remain unchanged for 2009: 12 artists will appear in three semi-finals of four songs each of which two will directly go to the final while the two others will have another chance to qualify in a second chance round. The three semi-finals will take place on the 9th, 16th and 23rd of January in YLE's Tampere studios while the second chance round will be broadcast directly before the grand final on the 31st of January which will take place also in Tampere, in the Exhibition and Sports Centre.
The 12 artists selected were revealed by YLE today, here they are in alphabetical order:
The Finnish national final will see the return of Jari Sillanpää who represented Finland in the 2004 Eurovision Song Contest. Before the final, a compilation album will be released including all the songs from the Finnish heats 2009. The shows will be presented by Jaana Pelkonen - one of the hosts of the 2007 Eurovision Song Contest - and Mikko "Peltsi" Peltonen, and the winner will be decided by telephone- and sms-voting.