The national broadcaster for Lithuania LRT has announced that it intends to make slight changes to it's national selection process before the new Eurovision season starts next year.
The head of delegation Audrius Giržadas has confirmed that it intends to shorten its selection process which will see ten shows, cut to a more manageable eight. Currently the national final "Eurovizijos" dainų konkurso nacionalinė atranka" is held over a three month period. The shows consist of six heats, an online wildcard round, two semi finals, and a grand final. It is known by fans as one of the longest pre-selection shows in the Eurovision calendar starting in January, and ending in March. It is expected the new format will see the competition run into January, and February only.
In an interview with Eurovoxx last year, the head of delegation acknowledged it was a long process. However, he also commented that the show was popular in Lithuania, and that it was value for money, with the audience responding by watching the shows, and voting.
Why the change of heart? Mr Giržadas has stated that the shorter format would hopefully encourage more artists to apply to the competition in the future, as previous contestants had criticised the shows length. It is also hoped, that the shorter national final, will give the team at LRT more of a chance to prepare for the Eurovision to be held in Israel.
Despite the lengthy show last year, the ultimate winner of "Eurovzijos Atranke", Ieva Zasimuskaite proved to be a hit as she qualified for the Eurovision grand final in Lisbon that saw her achieve a respectable 12th place with the song, "When we're old".
Do you think a shorter national final could lead Lithuania into a top ten placing in Eurovision 2019? Please tell us your thoughts in the comments below.