Albania participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 with the song "Ktheju tokes" performed by Jonida Maliqi. The national broadcaster Radio Televizioni Shqiptar organised the 57th edition of Festivali i Kenges in order to select the countrys entrant for the contest in Tel Aviv, Israel.
Prior to the 2020 Contest, Albania has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 16 times since its first entry in 2004. Albanias first entry was performed by Anjeza Shahini who performed "The Image of You" and finished in seventh place, Albanias second-highest placing to date. Albanias best result thus far was in 2012, with Rona Nishliu placing fifth with "Suus". Albania qualified for the grand final in 2018, with Eugent Bushpepa finishing in eleventh place with "Mall".
2.1. Before Eurovision Artist selection
The national broadcaster Radio Televizioni Shqiptar RTSH organised the 57th edition of Festivali i Kenges in order to select Albanias entrant for the Eurovision Song Contest 2019. This was the sixteenth time in which the competition determined the artist and song that would represent the country in the contest. It consisted of two semi-finals on 20 December and 21 December 2019 and the grand final on 22 December 2019.
On 16 May 2018, Radio Televizioni Shqiptar RTSH made an open call for artists and composers to take part in Festivali i Kenges 57. The submission process closed on 30 June 2018. The list of competing artists and songs were revealed on 17 October 2018.
2.2. Before Eurovision Final
The final took place on 22 December 2018. From the semi-finals, a total of 14 entries qualified.
3. At Eurovision
As of the rules of the Eurovision Song Contest, all participating countries with the exceptions of the host country and the Big Five are required to qualify from one of two semi-finals in order to compete for the grand final however, the top ten countries from each semi-final progress to the grand final.
The European Broadcasting Union split up the competing countries into six different pots based on voting patterns from previous contests, with countries with favourable voting histories put into the same pot. On 28 January 2019, a special allocation draw was held which placed each country into one of the two semi-finals, as well as which half of the show they would perform in. Albania was placed into the second semi-final, to be held on 16 May 2019, and was scheduled to perform in the second half of the show.
Once all the competing songs for the 2019 contest had been released, the running order for the semi-finals was decided by the contests producers rather than through another draw, so that similar songs were not placed next to each other. Albania was set to perform in position fourteen following the entry from Russia and preceding the entry from Norway.
3.1. At Eurovision Semi-finals
Albania performed fourteenth in the second semi-final. It was announced as having finished in the top 10 and subsequently qualifying for the grand final. It was later revealed that Albania placed ninth in the semi-final, receiving a total of 96 points: 58 points from the televoting and 38 points from the juries.
3.2. At Eurovision Voting
Voting during the three shows involved each country awarding two sets of points from 1-8, 10 and 12: one from their professional jury and the other from televoting. Each nations jury consisted of five music industry professionals who are citizens of the country they represent, with their names published before the contest to ensure transparency. This jury judged each entry based on: vocal capacity; the stage performance; the songs composition and originality; and the overall impression by the act. In addition, no member of a national jury was permitted to be related in any way to any of the competing acts in such a way that they cannot vote impartially and independently. The individual rankings of each jury member as well as the nations televoting results will be released shortly after the grand final.
3.3. At Eurovision Split voting results
The following five members comprised the Albanian jury:
Gent Rushi – Chairperson – pedagogue, jazz musician
Eranda Libohova – singer
Dilan Reka – singer
Julka Gramo – singer, moderator, entertainer
Vikena Kamenica - mezzo-soprano
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