Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2022 kicks off tonight following three-year absence

Following Destiny’s sixth place finish with ‘Je Me Casse’ last year, Malta will once again choose its Eurovision representative through its traditional national selection and will give the opportunity to 22 artists at tonight’s semifinal, which will once again feature a live audience from the MFCC in Ta’Qali.

Malta is back stronger than ever. The small Mediterranean island will fight to find the best entry for the Eurovision Song Contest 2022, which will take place in Turin (Italy) in May 2022. It will do so through the familiar ‘Malta Eurovision Song Contest’, which returns to the small screen after a three-year absence with a semifinal, a special evening, and a grand final in order to find its next Eurovision representative.

The first out of the three expected shows is happening tonight from the Malta Fairs and Convention Center (MFCC) pavilion in Ta’Qali. This venue, which hosted the grand final of the worldwide popular talent show ‘The X Factor’ last Sunday, is repeating as the venue for this competition, having embraced the same task for several years in the past.

Tonight’s gala will welcome 22 artists, who will face each other on the same stage that was used for ‘The X Factor’ live shows, and fight for one of the 16 tickets leading up to Saturday’s grand finale. Some of the names competing are actually well known to the ESC community!

As we already introduced in late December, this is the full line-up for tonight:

Aidan‘Ritmu’Aidan Cassar, Boban Apostolov
Baklava feat. Nicole Azzopardi‘Electric Indigo’Philip Vella, Gerard James Borg
Denise‘Boy’Aidan Cassar
Derrick‘II’Cyprian Cassar, Emil Calleja Bayliss
Emma Muscat‘Out of Sight’Antonio Caputo, Emma Muscat, Gabriel Rossi, Lorenzo Santarelli, Marco Salvaderi
Enya Magri‘Shame’Cyprian Cassar, Jodie Magri
Francesca‘Rise’Mark Scicluna, Etienne Micallef
Giada‘Revelación’Aidan Cassar
Janice Mangion‘Army’Cyprian Cassar, Mark Scicluna, Emil Calleja Bayliss
Jessica Grech‘Aphrodisiac’Philip Vella, Gerard James Borg
Malcolm Pissani‘We Came For Love’Gaspare Incatasciato, Muxu
Mark Anthony Bartolo‘Serenity’Mark Anthony Bartolo
Matt Blxck‘Come Around’Matt Blxck, David Grech
Miriana Conte‘Look What You’ve Done Now’Cyprian Cassar, Muxu
Nicole Azzopardi‘Into the Fire’Peter Boström, Per Jonsson, Marika Linde, Dimitri Stassos, Nektarios Tyrakis
Nicole Hammet‘A Lover’s Heart’Cyprian Cassar, Joe Julian Farrugia
Norbert‘How Special You Are’Shaun Farrugia, Norbert Bondin, Peter Borg
Rachel Lowell‘White Doves’Ylva Persson, Linda Persson, Peter Frodin, Emil Calleja Bayliss
Raquel Galdes‘Over You’Aidan Cassar
Richard Edwards‘Hey Little’Richard Micallef
Sarah Bonnici‘Heaven’Aidan Cassar
Jessica Muscat (Jessika)‘Kaleidoscope’Philip Bella, Gerard James Borg

To this effect, the running order of the night will be decided by the show producers to ensure a certain television dynamism according to an appropiate rhythm of the show itself. However, a draw which took place amidst rehearsals decided that AIDAN and his ‘Ritmu’ will open the night; and Jessika, with ‘Kaleidoscope’ will be the last to sing her song.

As mentioned lines above, some of the singers have already tried their luck on this very stage. We are talking about Jessika, who was already fortunate enough to step onto the 2018 Eurovision stage for San Marino, and competed seven times in the past here at the Malta Eurovision; Nicole Azzopardi, who represented Malta at Junior Eurovision 2010 in Minsk; Richard Micallef, who waved the Maltese flag at Eurovision as the lead vocalist of Firelight in 2014; Francesca, who went to Junior Eurovision 2009 in Kiev as part of a duo; as well as some others such as Aidan, Baklava, Matt Blxck, Janice Mangion or Miriana Conte.


For the last few days, PBS has been unveiling different details concerning the three shows and who will serve as the TV hosts of the three nights. This issue has is no longer unknown as they announced that the duo formed by Stephanie Spiteri and Quinton Scerri will introduce the semifinal. Both will be joined by fellow TV presenter Ron Briffa, a popular face within PBS ensuring some humour. Bot Josman and Ryan Borg, also familiar faces in Maltese TV scene, will play a role during the live shows.


The 16 qualifiers out of the 22 original line-up of acts making up this year’s Malta Eurovision Song Contest will be decided by an equal combination of the veredict determined by a professional jury panel as well as the audience with their votes from home. Nonetheless, the system is not expecting any variations for Saturday’s Grand Final where Malta’s Eurovision 2022 entry is set to be chosen following the same procedure, which has been heavily criticised in the past due to the televoting weight being lowered down to the least in the final result.


After several public national selection systems being tested for years prior to 2019, where Malta failed to qualify to Eurovision’s grand final from 2015 till 2018, Public Broadcasting Services (PBS) decided to adopt ‘The X Factor Malta’ as the competition which would also determine the island’s entrant for the contest. As it was established in the rules, the winner of ‘The X Factor Malta’ would have the honor of representing his or her very own country at Eurovision with an original composition especially the ocassion. In 2019, the winner was Michela Pace, who achieved the 14th place in Tel Aviv; and Destiny, who came 7th in Rotterdam. This was Malta’s best result since Ira Losco’s ‘7th Wonder’ placed 2nd in 2002.

Despite the success, local industry has been pushing to bring back the much-anticipated return of the MESC comes after three years where PBS is seeking to reunite the Maltese audience after the pandemic. MFCC doors have been opened again for those who want to attend the live shows.

Tickets are still available to buy on

For those who still want to watch but are unable to attend the actual show can tune in on TV and expect three great music shows put up by the best Maltese lightning and sound experts, technicians, camera directors, OBS vans, production and their vast experiences behind this kind of TV shows as most of them already worked in the last series of ‘The X Factor’. Rehearsals for MESC 2022 actually began even before the final show, which crowned Ryan Hili as its winner, happened a few days ago. Could we expect to see him competing to be Malta’s next Eurovision entrant in 2023?

Gordon Bonello, artist director of the show, stated that “MESC 2022 will be one of the most beautiful shows which the Maltese have long beein waiting for“. “It is a very complicated machine. We adopt the Eurovision system where each singer comes with its idea and we develop it as best as possible for TV“, he noted during rehearsals at MFCC.

Here you can watch a sneak peak of how the stage looks in action as well as Jessika’s performance for ‘Kaleidoscope’. You can also visit PBS Official YouTube Channel to take a look at the rest of performances. Names tipped as hot favorites to win, based on YouTube views as a reliable indicator, are Italian-based Emma Muscat and Aidan.

On the other hand, meanwhile the shows on Thursday 17th and Saturday 19th are set to be a proper competition, a special evening will be held on Friday to commemorate singers who represented the nation in former years. From Malta’s first participation in 1971 featuring Joe Grech to Destiny’s outstanding performance with ‘Je Me Casse in 2021. Most of them will be present to talk about their experiences as well as archives footage which will be shown on TV in the meantime.


You can watch the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2022 semifinal via our ‘ESCplus Live: Multiwindow’ by clicking HERE from 21:00 (CET) onwards.

Who will get to follow in Destiny’s footsteps in the European competition? The answer will be known on Saturday as the excitement grows as it leads up to the moment.

eurovision, Malta

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