Israel: KAN introduces changes in the ESC 2021 song selection procedure

Israel: KAN introduces changes in the ESC 2021 song selection procedure

The Israeli national broadcaster, KAN, is choosing to follow a different plan regarding the ESC 2021 song selection by introducing changes in the process. 

Almost three weeks have passed since the committee convened to listen to the 220 songs sent for the selection process of the Israeli song for Eurovision 2021, but the broadcasting corporation chose not to reveal details about the committee’s results for the time being. Just last Thursday, the corporation sent an email to all the creators updating whether their song continues to the next stage in the process or whether their song was not advancing.

What was initially released

According to the regulations published by the Broadcasting Corporation for the composers who submitted songs to the committee, the corporation is supposed to publish the songs that went up to the next stage towards the end of the month (November) or the beginning of next month, but now there is a delay in the procedure. According to the plan, after the songs are published, listeners will be asked to rate the songs and select the four songs for the next stage. Committee members will select four additional songs. The eight songs will face each other in the semi-finals of the pre-Eurovision private that will be produced for Eden Elena and will be broadcast on ‘Here 11’ in February. Only four songs will advance to the finals and will be performed by Eden Elena. At the same time, the corporation has emphasized throughout that the corporation reserves the right to make changes in the procedure. 

What KAN will follow

KAN has reported to the initial screening process for songs submitted was carried out through a professional committee on behalf of the corporation. The committee listened to all the hundreds of songs submitted, completely anonymously, with the authors’ identities unknown to the committee members. From the songs submitted, the committee selected 10 songs that will be promoted to the next stage, based on professional criteria only, including matching the song to the competition and the singer. 

The 10 selected songs will be uploaded to a digital interface and from them the public will be able to choose two songs, and the committee will add one more song, a total of three songs that will go up to the last selection stage, also digital, and in it uniquely, the surfers will choose the winning song.

The winning song will be announced in a special broadcast, “Our Eurovision Song,” which will air in late January or early February, revealing the creators of the three songs, music videos and surfers’ choice of song to represent the nation in Eurovision 2021.

Authors that have submitted original songs for Eden Alene have threaten to go to courts on grounds that the process in not held in a proper way. 


Israel has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 40 times since making its debut in 1973. Israel’s first appearance at the contest in 1973 was successful, with Ilanit finishing fourth. Israel has achieved 4  victories, in 1978 and 1979, with first two wins for Izhar Cohen and the Alphabeta, with the song “A-Ba-Ni-Bi”and Gali Atari and Milk and Honey, with “Hallelujah” .  Its third victory came in 1998, with Dana International and “Diva”  and its fourth in 2018 with Netta’s song Toy. 

The country’s best results apart from  its victories  were the second-place finishes for Avi Toledano in 1982 and Ofra Haza in 1983. Former winner Izhar Cohen returned to place fifth in 1985. Duo Datz finished third in 1991, while Eden finished fifth in 1999. Israel has hosted the contest three times, in 1979 and 1999, both in Jerusalem and in 2019 in Tel Aviv.

After the introduction of the semi-finals in 2004, Israel has failed to reach the final six times. In 2014, the country failed to qualify for the fourth consecutive year, when Mei Feingold finished 14th (out of 15) in the second semi final, despite being one of the favorites to qualify. In 2015, Israel reached the final for the first time in five years, with Nadav Guedj finishing ninth. The only Israeli entrant to achieve a better result in the 21st century before their 2018 win was Shiri Maimon in 2005, who gave the country its tenth top five result in the contest, finishing fourth.

In 2018 Netta Brazilai brought the trophy home winning Eurovision 2018 in Lisbon with her song Toy. Next year the host nation was represented by Kobi Marimi and his entry “Home” which finished 23rd in the Grand final.

This year Eden Alene  won the talent show “The next Star” and the ticket to Rotterdam where she was going to perform the nationally selected song Feker Libi. Due to the covid-19 pandemic the contest was cancelled interrupting Eden’s Eurovision journey. However Eden must find a new song for next year’s competition after EBU’s decision to not allow to the Eurovision 2020 entries to compete in the 2021 edition of the contest .

That’s remember Eden’s uptempo full in motion ESC 2020 entry:


Angelo D.

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