Italy: RAI releases full Sanremo 2020 rules – Changes announced

The Italian broadcaster has published on its official website the final rules for the next edition of Festival di Sanremo. Although the artistic director, Amadeus, had already advanced some new aspects over the last weeks, the final document still has some really interesting parts.

Artists and their labels must confirm to RAI if they want to participate in Eurovision 2020 before the first night. In order to do this, they’ll be required to fill in a form and submit it to the Italian broadcaster before the festival. So, if the winner doesn’t submit the form, RAI will internally select the Italian entry from the other participants.

This puts an end to the Eurovision drama that has been happening yearly since 2015: once we knew the Sanremo winner, we had to wait until the artist expressed their intention. Although this normally happened just a few hours in most cases, this year we had to wait two days to know if Mahmood intended to perform on the Eurovision stage.

Regarding the format, the voting system has undergone several changes. Most notably, a jury made up of all the members of the orchestra will have a say on the third show, while they’re also completely getting rid of the expert jury.

  • First and second nights (4-5 February):
    • The 20 performers will make their first appearance, 10 per show. The voting for this show is fully up to the demoscopic jury (a jury selected by RAI that represents the Italian population).
    • The 8 artists from the youth category will also perform for the first time. The demoscopic jury will decide which four of them will advance to the next show.
  • Third night (6 February):
    • The 20 artists will cover memorable songs from Sanremo’s past commemorating the 70th anniversary of the competition. The orchestra will vote this time.
    • The 4 qualified youth artists will perform their entries once again. A combination of the televote, the press jury and the demoscopic jury will decide the two finalists.
  • Fourth night (7 February):
    • The 20 artists will perform their entries again. While the press jury will decide the results of that show.
    • The 2 youth artists that had made it to the final will perform their entries. Once again, the televote and the two panels will decide the winner of the Youth category.
  • Final night (8 February):
    • The 20 artists will perform their entries for the last time. A combination of the televote, the press jury and the demoscopic jury will decide the outcome. As usual, the three superfinalists will be decided after adding up the votes of all shows. 
    • At the superfinal, the winner of Sanremo 2020 will be decided through the same voting combination, but, this time, the points will be reseted. So, only the points of the superfinal will help choose the final winning entry. 

The Italian media has reported that the full list of participants of the main Sanremo 2020 category will be revealed in the first half of January.

You can read the full regulations here (in Italian).

What artists do you want to see performing in the famous Ariston Theatre in Sanremo?

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