Despite electing a far-right party into power, the Dutch Eurovision Song Contest 2024 entry promises to blend diversity and inclusion.
AVROTROS, the Dutch broadcaster, has received a record-breaking number of over 600 submissions for the 2024 contest. Inside sources say the songs reflects a rich diversity of genres and languages. From pop to hip-hop, soul, opera, R&B, and reggae. While most entries are in English, a significant number feature Dutch lyrics, along with a sprinkling of French, Arabic, Spanish, Turkish, and Italian.
Twan van Nieuwenhuijzen, the Chairman of the selection committee, expressed his optimism, stating, “The interest in participating is enormous and diverse… I have a lot of confidence in finding the right song and artist this year”.
Back to song selection by committee
The Dutch have had a fairly decent run over recent years – coming after a long slump where they regularly scraped the bottom of the Eurovision barrel. Last year saw two uncharismatic unknowns wail their tuneless way out of the final, and rather than carry on with what had (generally) been working just fine, AVROTROS may have knee-jerked back into what used to fail for sure.
A selection committee, consisting of prominent figures including Twan van de Nieuwenhuijzen, Carolien Borgers, Cornald Maas (obvs), Hila Noorzai, Sander Lantinga, Jaap Reesema, and Jacqueline Govaert, now has the task of listening through these entries to choose the next Dutch representative. Jaap Reesema and Jacqueline Govaert are new to the committee and AVROTROS insists this means they will bring fresh perspectives to the selection process.
I heard a rumour
There’s been some buzz around the selection method for the Dutch entry. Last year, after the writing was on the all for Mia Nicolai & Dion Cooper, following painfully poor vocal performance at Eurovision preparties, AVROTROS director Eric van Stade was already hedging his bets. He hinted at a national final for 2024: “Even after the upcoming Eurovision Song Contest, the decision whether the Dutch entry should be chosen by the public or not will be discussed again, in a serious way with all involved”
The Nationaal Songfestival (2009-2012) saw the Dutch miss out on the Grand Final year in, year out. Since 2013, the country has predominantly selected its entries internally. Anouk was the first act selected in this way and finished in the top 10. The Common Linnets reached second place in 2014, and Duncan Laurence scored a victory in 2019 with the song “Arcade”