Festivali i Këngës takes start tonight!

The Albanian National Final called Festivali i Këngës starts Friday evening. The show includes two semifinals and a final during the next three days.20 acts competes to get to represent the country at the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest to be held in Moscow.

The 2008 Festivali i Këngës will consist of two semi-finals, to be held on 19th and 20th of December, and the final will be taken place on 21st of December in Palace of Congress, Tirana.

According to the public broadcaster RTSH some slight changes to the voting procedure has been made this year compared to previous editions of the festival. On the final night, seven jurors will vote on the finalists, and they will openly announce their votes one by one. In addition to that, the public can give their opinion on the songs by SMS voting, the results of which will be added to the jury votes, making up 25% of the total result. 

This year, there are only 20 songs to compete at the festival. The first running order for tomorrow night will be:

1. Dorina Garuci – Dite 1 jetë (Life one day)
2. Endri & Stefi Prifti – Ti bere faj (You made the fault)
3. Evis Mula – Unë jam dashuria (I am love)
4. Juliana Pasha & Luiz Ejlli – Nje jetë (A life)
5. Group West Side Family – Jehonë (Echo)
6. Shpat Kasapi – Aromë mediterane (Mediterranean aroma)
7. Kejsi Tola – Më mërr në ëndërr (Take me in your dreams)
8. Marjeta Billo – Era e tokës (Scent of the earth)
9. Rovena Dilo & Gent Bushpepa TBA
10. Agim Poshka – Fajtor për ngrohjen globale (Guilty of global warming)
11. Julian Lekocaj – Nuk Je Ti (You aren’t)
12. Group Burn – Jam I Pari I Jettes Sime (I’m the first of my life)
13. Erga Halilaj- Dikush mungon (Someone’s missing)
14. Emi Bogdo – Kur buzet henen e kafshojn (When the lips bite the moon)
15. Kujtim Prodani – Nostalgji (Nostalgy)
16. Adelina Thaci- Oret e fundit (The final hours)
17. Era Rusi – Shpirt i humbur (Lost soul)
18. Vedat Ademi – Po me prite – (You waited for me)
19. Besa Kokedhima – Ajer (Air)
20. Soni Malaj – Zona zero (Zone zero)  

It’s rumoured that on the second night (this Saturday) the performers will perform their songs with famous artist such as Tamara Todevska who represented F.Y.R. of Macedonia in 2008 Eurovision Song Contest. And the running order will be:

1. Group West Side Family
2. Soni Malaj
3. Juliana Pasha & Luiz Ejlli
4. Kujtim Prodani
5. Emi Bogdo
6. Erga Halilaj
7. Marjeta Billo
8. Adelina Thaci
9. Rovena Dilo & Gent Bushpepa
10. Dorina Gauci
11. Endri & Stefi Prifti
12. Kejsi Tola
13. Era Rusi
14. Julian Lekocaj
15. Shpat Kasapi
16. Evis Mula
17. Group Burn
18. Vedat Ademi
19. Agim Poshka
20. Beska Kokedhima 

On the final night (this Sunday) contestants will perform in the same way with first semi final. And the winner will take place in Eurovision Song Contest 2009, Moscow. Olta Boka won the festival last year with the song Zemrën E Lamë Peng and represented Albania in Belgrade. She came 17th with 55 points.

The  Festivali i Këngës will also be available to watch via internet from festival website by clicking here.

Source: EuroVisionary, RTSH, eurovision.tv
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