Malta in the Eurovision Song Contest
|National selection events|
|Appearances||32 (25 finals)|
|Best result||2nd: 2002, 2005|
|Malta's page at Eurovision.tv|
| For the most recent participation see|
Malta in the Eurovision Song Contest 2021
Malta has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 32 times since its debut in 1971. The contest is broadcast in Malta on the PBS channel, TVM. Malta has yet to win the contest, but is the only non-winning country to have achieved four top three results.
Malta finished last on its first two attempts in 1971 and 1972, and had a 16-year absence from the contest between 1975 and 1991. Malta's return proved more successful, reaching the top 10 in 12 out of 15 contests from 1991 to 2005, including third-place results for Mary Spiteri (1992) and Chiara (1998) and second-place results for Ira Losco (2002) and Chiara (2005). Since finishing last for the third time in 2006, Malta has struggled to make an impact, with its only top 10 result being Gianluca Bezzina's eighth-place in 2013.
Malta first participated at Eurovision in 1971, although the history of National song contests organized in the Maltese islands dates back to 1960 when the first Malta Song Festival took place. Malta has never won the contest, although it has twice finished second and twice finished third. At first, the island state sent songs in its native language, Maltese, but it failed to rank highly, finishing last in its first two attempts in the contest in 1971 and 1972 and withdrew after the 1975 contest.
Malta's return to the contest in 1991, after a 16-year absence, proved to be more successful, with eight consecutive top 10 placings (1991–1998) and finishing in the top 10 in 12 out of 15 contests from 1991 to 2005. These results included third-place finishes in 1992 for Mary Spiteri and in 1998 for Chiara and second-place finishes in 2002 for Ira Losco and in 2005 for Chiara, who in 2009 became the first performer to represent Malta at three contests, finishing 22nd. Malta's two seconds and two thirds, make it the most successful country not to win the contest.
In the last 12 contests, Malta has only once reached the top 10, when Gianluca Bezzina finished eighth in 2013. Fabrizio Faniello, who had previously finished ninth in 2001, finished last in the 2006 final, and since then the country has failed to qualify from the semi-final round seven times, in 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2015, 2017 and 2018.
Together with France, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom, Malta is one of the few countries that has not missed a contest since 1991. All of Malta's entries since 1991 have been sung in its other official language, English, which it was one of the few countries allowed to use in the contest between 1977 and 1999, being a former British colony which (as seen below) has had a close relationship with the UK within the contest. The only use of the Maltese language was three lines in the 2000 entry "Desire", performed by Claudette Pace. The Maltese broadcasters of the show are the Public Broadcasting Services (PBS). All shows are transmitted live on TVM (Malta) and Radio Malta. Also, along with Croatia and Sweden it was the only country never to be relegated, under the previous rules of the contest, that wasn't a part of the Big Four.
Malta uses a televised national final to select its entry. From its debut in 1971 through 1976, Malta Song Festival, an existing song festival that had been created in 1960 was used to select the entrant, with the winner going to represent the country at the Eurovision Song Contest. Malta did not participate in the contest between 1977 and 1990. Since its return in 1991, national finals under various names were held to select the entry, including Malta Song for Europe (Maltese: il-Festival Kanzunetta għall-Ewropa), Malta Eurovision Song Contest, and Malta Eurosong. During this time period, the organization of the event was taken over by the Maltese broadcaster Public Broadcasting Services (PBS Malta).
A typical national final would consist of: the rules for submissions by composers, authors, and singers being published in October, first elimination rounds in December, and semifinalists announced in January. The semifinal was then held in February, followed two days later by a final to choose Malta's representative at the Eurovision. In 2009, a new format of the contest was introduced, the Malta Eurosong contest, with eight semi-finals held over November 2008 to January 2009, with a final of 20 songs competing in February. In 2010 six semi-finals were held over December 2009 and January 2010, and a final was once again held in February 2010. This format was discontinued for the 2019 contest, with PBS instead using X Factor Malta to select the artist.
|Entry selected but did not compete|
|Joe Grech||"Marija l-Maltija"||Maltese||18 ◁||52||No semi-finals|
|Helen and Joseph||"L-imħabba"||Maltese||18 ◁||48|
|Renato||"Singing This Song"||English||12||32|
|Paul Giordimaina and Georgina||"Could It Be"||English||6||106|
|Mary Spiteri||"Little Child"||English||3||123|
|William Mangion||"This Time"||English||8||69||Kvalifikacija za Millstreet|
|Chris and Moira||"More Than Love"||English||5||97||No semi-finals|
|Mike Spiteri||"Keep Me In Mind"||English||10||76|
|Miriam Christine||"In a Woman's Heart"||English||10||68||4||138|
|Debbie Scerri||"Let Me Fly"||English||9||66||No semi-finals|
|Chiara||"The One That I Love"||English||3||165[a]|
|Times Three||"Believe 'n Peace"||English||15||32|
|Claudette Pace||"Desire"||English, Maltese||8||73|
|Fabrizio Faniello||"Another Summer Night"||English||9||48|
|Ira Losco||"7th Wonder"||English||2||164|
|Lynn Chircop||"To Dream Again"||English||25||4|
|Julie and Ludwig||"On Again... Off Again"||English||12||50||8||74|
|Chiara||"Angel"||English||2||192||Top 12 previous year[b]|
|Fabrizio Faniello||"I Do"||English||24 ◁||1||Top 11 previous year[b]|
|Olivia Lewis||"Vertigo"||English||Failed to qualify||25||15|
|Chiara||"What If We"||English||22||31||6||86|
|Thea Garrett||"My Dream"||English||Failed to qualify||12||45|
|Glen Vella||"One Life"||English||11||54|
|Kurt Calleja||"This Is the Night"||English||21||41||7||70|
|Amber||"Warrior"||English||Failed to qualify||11||43|
|Ira Losco||"Walk on Water"||English||12||153||3||209|
|Claudia Faniello||"Breathlessly"||English||Failed to qualify||16||55|
|Destiny||"All of My Love"||English||Contest cancelled[c] X|
Marcel Bezençon Awards
Barbara Dex Award
Commentators and spokespersons
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|1971||Victor Aquilina||No spokesperson|
|1973||Charles Saliba||Did not participate|
|1976–1990||No broadcast||Did not participate|
|1991||Toni Sant||Dominic Micallef|
|1992||Anna Bonanno||Anna Bonanno|
|1993||Charles Saliba||Kevin Drake|
|1994||Charles Arrigo||John Demanuele|
|1995||Enzo Gusman||Stephanie Farrugia|
|1996||Charles Saliba||Ruth Amaira|
|1997||Gino Cauchi||Anna Bonanno|
|1999||Charlo Bonnici||Nirvana Azzopardi|
|2001||Alfred Borg||Marbeck Spiteri|
|2002||John Bundy||Yvette Portelli|
|2004||Eileen Montesin||Claire Agius|
|2007||Antonia Micallef||Mireille Bonello|
|2008||Eileen Montesin||Moira Delia|
|2009||Valerie Vella||Pauline Agius|
|2011||Eileen Montesin||Kelly Schembri|
|2012||Ronald Briffa and Elaine Saliba||Keith Demicoli|
|2013||Gordon Bonello and Rodney Gauci||Emma Hickey|
|2014||Carlo Borg Bonaci||Valentina Rossi|
|2015||Corazon Mizzi||Julie Zahra|
|2016||Arthur Caruana||Ben Camille|
|2017||No commentary||Martha Fenech|
- Spain originally gave its 12 points to Israel and 10 to Norway. After the broadcast it was announced that Spanish broadcaster wrongly tallied the votes and Germany should have got the top mark - 12 points - instead of being snubbed, as it happened. The mistake was corrected and so Germany was placed 7th over Norway. Israel and Norway both received 2 points less than originally and Croatia, Malta, Portugal, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Belgium, Estonia and Turkey all received one point less than indicated during the broadcast.
- According to the then-Eurovision rules, the top ten non-Big Four countries from the previous year along with the Big Four automatically qualified for the Grand Final without having to compete in semi-finals. For example, if Germany and France placed inside the top ten, the 11th and 12th spots were advanced to next year's Grand Final along with all countries ranked in the top ten.
- The 2020 contest was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Cremona, George (2018). "The Eurovision Song Contest within Formal Educational Learning Contexts: A Critical Multimodal Interpretation of Possible Inter-Disciplinary Connections (Selected proceedings of the Conference 'Connections', University of Malta Junior College, 18–20 September 2017)" (PDF). Symposia Melitensia (14): 151–160. ISSN 1812-7509.
- Klier, Marcus (8 February 2009). "Malta: Eurovision entrant chosen". ESCToday. Archived from the original on 9 February 2009. Retrieved 8 February 2009.
- Sanz Martin, Jorge (8 February 2009). "Malta: Chiara bids in Eurovision 2009 for third time". Oikotimes. Archived from the original on 11 February 2009. Retrieved 8 February 2009.
- Klier, Marcus (2 September 2009). "Malta: major changes to the selection process". ESCToday. Archived from the original on 3 September 2008. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Floras, Stella (14 October 2008). "Malta: More developments on 2009 national selection". ESCToday. Archived from the original on 15 October 2008. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Stella, Floras (19 November 2009). "Malta: National final on 20th February". ESCToday. Archived from the original on 21 November 2009. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- "Marcel Bezençon Awards". eurovision.tv. Archived from the original on 16 July 2019. Retrieved 8 December 2019.
- Adams, William Lee (9 July 2015). "Poll: Who was the worst dressed Barbara Dex Award winner?". Wiwibloggs. Retrieved 8 December 2019.