Oscar-winning singer Markéta Irglová competing to represent Czechia in Eurovision

The audience will vote which of the five Czech Television nominees will go to Liverpool in May.

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 17.01.2023 11:30:00 (updated on 17.01.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

Czech musician Markéta Irglová is among those hoping to represent the Czech Republic in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. Czech Television (ČT) has selected five acts to compete to represent Czechia, from the 170 songs that were submitted. The viewing public can vote for the winner between Jan. 30 and Feb. 6, who will then go to Liverpool to face acts from Europe and Australia between May 9 and 13.

Irglová, who won an Oscar for the song “Falling Slowly” from the 2007 film “Once,” has lived in Iceland since 2012. She sought to represent Iceland in the 2022 Eurovision contest but was eliminated in that country's semi-finals.

Czechia’s Eurovision contenders

For the Czech nomination this year, she will compete against the all-woman band Vesna, singer Rodan, Czech singer with Armenian roots Pam Rabbit, and London-based Michaela Charvátová performing under the stage name Maella.

Vesna mixes elements of folklore into modern pop. Their debut album was nominated for a Czech Anděl award in 2019. Rodan, who writes his own songs in English, released his debut album last year. Pam Rabbit, who also competed for the nomination in 2020, blends spooky and humorous elements in her music and also directs videos. Author, singer, and producer Maella was an ambassador for Spotify's Equal playlist last year.

The selection process for the Czech national representative will start with a live broadcast on YouTube on Jan. 30. Viewers will also be able to watch it on ČT’s iVysílání platform. The event will be hosted in English, for an international audience, by the singer Adam Mišík.

People can vote via the Eurovison mobile app from the end of the live broadcast until midnight on Feb. 6. The winner will be announced the next day.

Eurovision has been getting more interest despite the country not performing well so far.

Honorable mentions

“I am proud of how the Eurovision brand has grown on our music scene, it is becoming extremely interesting and attractive. This year we received an overwhelming response from the domestic music industry, songs mostly by Czech authors, and all with Czech singers,” Czech delegation head Kryštof Šámal said in a press release.

Ukrainian band Kalush Orchestra won last year’s Eurovision with the song “Stefania.” While the winning country usually hosts the following year’s contest, for security reasons the competition was moved to the UK, which is home to the second-place act.

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The Czech representative last year, We are Domi finished in 22nd place with the song “Lights Off.”

Counting this year, the Czech Republic has entered Eurovision a total of 11 times since 2007 and has made it to the finals four times. The best showing was in 2018 when Mikolas Josef came in sixth. Czechoslovakia never competed in Eurovision, but singer Karel Gott represented Austria in 1968.

The Eurovision Song Contest is organized by members of the European Broadcasting Union. It has been held annually since 1956, except for 2020 (due to Covid), making it the longest-running international televised music contest. It is the world’s most-watched non-sporting televised event, attracting an average of 180 million viewers every year.  

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