Former Maltese Eurovision singer Richard Micallef has called for a return of the Malta Eurovision Song Contest, arguing that the winning song should be selected by the public and not a “small circle of people.”
“No need to discard X-Factor but Malta Eurovision Song Contest should return,” said Micallef, who represented Malta in 2014 as part of the band Firelight and finished in 23rd place.
“Malta’s Eurovision song shouldn’t be selected by a small group of people. It should be our choice as Maltese to select a song we are proud of and not done behind closed doors by a bunch of people with power who think it’s OK to hijack a decision which should be ours.”
“Not to mention all the work and opportunities lost for singers, musicians, songwriters, producers etc when the contest was removed.”
Micallef becomes the latest Maltese Eurovision winner to criticise the mechanisms behind the scenes.
Ludwig Galea, who represented Malta in 2004, warned that a ‘social media formula’ exists to create huge hype around Maltese singers and raise their betting odds ahead of the show.
Lynn Faure Chircop, who represented Malta in 2004, coyly said the way some people “change perspective when they discover the politics involved” at the Eurovision reminds her of the Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
Since 2019, Malta’s Eurovision singer has been selected through a public vote on X-Factor Malta, with the song chosen behind the scenes. This recipe has so far seen Michela Pace finish 14th in 2019 with ‘Chameleon’ and Destiny finish 7th this year with ‘Je Me Casse’.
The last two Maltese Eurovision songs which were selected by the general public, Christabelle’s Taboo in 2018 and Claudia Faniello’s Breathlessly in 2017, both failed to qualify from the semi-final.
Do you think we should bring back the MESC?