Belgium has spoken: it’s Roberto Bellarosa!
Following on the heels of their neighbor to the north bringing Anouk to Eurovision, today brought word of Belgium’s choice for Malmo (well, technically, Walloonia, but that’s neither here nor there). Fresh off of his victory on The Voice Belgique this past spring, and the release of his first album Ma voie in September, Roberto Bellarosa has been given the challenge to bring Belgium back to the Finals for the first time since Tom Dice’s 6th place in Oslo, and to possibly be the first Walloon performer to break into the Finals at all. Since his victory on The Voice, Roberto has released the hit single “Je Crois”, which might be an insight into the style of entry we might get to hear from him.
A modest National Final on December 16th (the day after the Swiss Selection, for those of you keeping track) will determine what he’ll bring to Sweden. Walloon broadcaster RTBF have been experimenting with selection styles over the past few years, with middling levels of success. Their previous entry, “With Love Baby” by acapella group Witloof Bay, was chosen by a full National Final system, but just missed out on the final. Before that, RTBF went for a completely internal selection, picking the awkward Elvis impersonator Patrick Ouchène and his appropriately-titled “Copycat”, which ended up near the bottom of the table on Semifinal night in Moscow. Also internally selected, the same fate befell 2007’s representative, the KMGs, with their funk-inspired “Love Power”. Fortunately, Roberto has already been “selected” by the people of French-speaking Belgium by emerging victorious from one of their biggest televised talent shows, and the Belgian people (or, at least, half of them) will get to have their say in the song he sings in May.
Stay tuned for more updates on Roberto, as well as all of the other news coming down the pipeline as National Finals approach and broadcasters make their announcements.