The ABU has revealed to Eurovoix World that is does not have a specific target for the number of countries taking part in the ABU Song Contest 2019.
The Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union is not looking for a specific number of participating countries in the first edition of the ABU Song Contest. The ABU stated to Eurovoix World that it does not have a target for how many countries it wants to see take part. However it is confident that there is sufficient interest to warrant a semi-final being held.
Unlike other ABU events the ABU Song Contest does not have an upper limit on the number of participating countries. Up to 15 countries alongside the host nation of the ABU TV Song Festival or ABU Radio Song Festival have been allowed to take part in the festivals. In 2018 a record 16 countries including Turkmenistan participated in the ABU TV Song Festival.
Currently the following countries and broadcasters have shown an interest in participating in the ABU Song Contest 2019:
Broadcasters have until March 20 to submit their intention to participate in the contest to the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union.
The ABU Song Contest will be held for the first time later this year in Qingdao, China. The semi-final will be held on Thursday the 17 of October, with the final taking place on Saturday 19 of October. One broadcaster will be allowed to take part per country, if two broadcasters apply to take part from the same country, the ABU will use its discretion to select the eligible broadcaster.
Each broadcaster will be encouraged to hold a selection process to determine their participant for the contest. To compete in the contest singers must be;
- Age 16 and above
- May be a solo artist or a group
- Singers may be professional or amateur
- Singers must perform live at the contest
Each performer will be able to compete with just one song, the rules for competing songs are as follows;
- There are no rules on the genre or language that songs should be performed in
- Both original and popular songs are allowed to compete
- Songs that describe sensitive issues will not be allowed
- Songs cannot exceed three minutes in length
All of the nations taking part in the contest will have to compete in the Semi-Final. The qualifiers and the winner in the Grand Final will be selected in the same way.
There is no televote from the public in each of the competing nations. Instead broadcasters will have to organise their own ‘Audience jury’. This jury is formed of 100 people and will decide half of the vote at the contest.
The remainder of the vote will be determined by an International Professional Jury.