Malta in the Eurovision Song Contest 2017

Eurovision Song Contest 2017
Country  Malta
National selection
Selection process Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017
Selection date(s) 18 February 2017
Selected entrant Claudia Faniello
Selected song « Breathlessly« 
Selected songwriter(s) Philip Vella
Sean Vella
Gerard James Borg
Finals performance
Semi-final result Failed to qualify
Malta in the Eurovision Song Contest
◄2016 2017

Malta will participate in the Eurovision Song Contest 2017 with the song « Breathlessly » written by Philip Vella, Sean Vella and Gerard James Borg. The song was performed by Claudia Faniello. The Maltese entry for the 2016 contest in Kiev, Ukraine was initially selected through the national final Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017, organised by the Maltese broadcaster Public Broadcasting Services (PBS). The national final was held on 18 February 2017 and « Breathlessly » performed by Claudia Faniello eventually emerged as the winning entry after receiving the most votes from the televote.

Malta was drawn to compete in the second semi-final of the Eurovision Song Contest which took place on 11 May 2017. Performing during the show in position 4, « Breathlessly » was not announced among the top 10 entries of the second semi-final and therefore did not qualify to compete in the final.


Prior to the 2017 Contest, Malta had participated in the Eurovision Song Contest twenty-nine times since its first entry in 1971.[1] Malta briefly competed in the Eurovision Song Contest in the 1970s before withdrawing for sixteen years. The country had, to this point, competed in every contest since returning in 1991. Malta’s best placing in the contest thus far was second, which it achieved on two occasions: in 2002 with the song « 7th Wonder » performed by Ira Losco and in 2005 with the song « Angel » performed by Chiara. In 2015, Malta failed to qualify to the final with the song « Warrior » performed by Amber. In 2016, Malta placed twelfth with the song « Walk On Water » performed by Ira Losco.

For the 2017 Contest, the Maltese national broadcaster, Public Broadcasting Services (PBS), broadcast the event within Malta and organised the selection process for the nation’s entry. Malta has selected their entry consistently through a national final procedure Malta Eurovision Song Contest, a method that was continued for their 2017 participation.

Before Eurovision

Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017

Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017 was the national final format developed by PBS to select the Maltese entry for the Eurovision Song Contest 2017. The national final took place at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre in Valletta, Malta and it was hosted by Daniel Azzopardi and Charlene Mercieca. It was broadcast on TVM as well as online at the broadcaster’s website, and broadcast on TVM as well as online at the broadcaster’s website


The competition consisted sixteen entries competing in a national final which took place on 18 February 2017. The winner was decided solely by a public televoting.

The Maltese selection was undergoing a lot of changes for the 2017 contest. On 28 December, John Bundy, the chief executive of the Public Broadcasting Services, confirmed that the winning song would be the country’s official Eurovision song for the contest in Kiev and it wouldn’t be replaced like in 2016. It was revealed that Malta Eurovision Song Contest would no longer have a semi-final and there would only be a final instead. The broadcaster also had the right to shortlist only one song per artist, so there wasn’t a repeat of Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2016 where Ira Losco entered with two songs – “Chameleon” and “That’s Why I Love You”. The voting system was also changed by removing the jury vote in favour of 100% televoting result.[2][3]

Competing entries announced the 60 songs selected among 156 songs which applied to participate in the Malta Eurovision Song Contest 2017. An eleven-person expert panel assessed the songs and selected 16 finalists. They were revealed on 21 December 2016.[4]


The final was held on 18 February 2017. It took place at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre in Valletta, Malta and it was hosted by Daniel Azzopardi and Charlene Mercieca. The show consisted of 16 competing acts and the winner was decided solely by a public televoting. Claudia Faniello with the song « Breathlessly » was selected as the winner.[5] In addition to the performances from the competitors, the show featured guest performances by the 2016 Junior Eurovision entrant Christina Magrin and 2016 Eurovision entrant Ira Losco.[6]

Draw Artist Song Songwriter(s) Televote Place
1 Klinsmann Coleiro « Laserlight » Dreher Emanuel, Stefan Moessle, Mathias Strasser 332 10
2 Raquela Dalli Gonzi « Ray of Light » Boris Cezek, Dean Muscat 551 8
3 Deborah C & Josef « Tonight » Jonas Gladnikoff, Primož Poglajen, Michael James Down, Sara Ljunggren, Angie Laus 572 7
4 Kevin Borg « Follow » Kevin Borg, Simon Gribbe 2,502 3
5 Jade Vella « Seconds Away » Kevin Borg, Simon Gribbe 166 14
6 Crosswalk « So Simple » Boris Cezek, Dean Muscat 245 12
7 Franklin Calleja « Follow Me » Ivan Grech, Cyprian Cassar, Muxu 1,303 5
8 Rhiannon « Fearless » Cyprian Cassar, Rhiannon Micallef 288 11
9 Miriana Conte « Don’t Look Down » Cyprian Cassar, Muxu 156 16
10 Shauna Vassallo « Crazy Games » Cyprian Cassar, Muxu 159 15
11 Janice Mangion « Kewkba » (Star) Mark Scicluna, Emil Calleja Bayliss 4,544 2
12 Cherton Caruana « Fighting to Survive » Boris Cezek, Dean Muscat 340 9
13 Maxine Pace « Bombshell » Noel Cohen, Michael Macallister, Julie Hardy, Erin Bowman 627 6
14 Richard Edwards « You » Richard Micallef 186 13
15 Brooke Borg « Unstoppable » Christian Schneider, Aidan O’Connor, Sara Biglert, Brooke Borg 2,000 4
16 Claudia Faniello « Breathlessly » Philip Vella, Sean Vella, Gerard James Borg 4,996 1


Claudia Faniello made several appearances across Europe to specifically promote « Breathlessly » as the Maltese Eurovision entry. On 2 April, she performed during the London Eurovision Party, which was held at the Café de Paris venue in London, United Kingdom and hosted by Nicki French. Between 3 and 6 April, Faniello took part in promotional activities in Tel Aviv, Israel where she performed during the Israel Calling event held at the Ha’teatron venue.[7][8] On 8 April, Claudia Faniello performed during the Eurovision in Concert event which was held at the Melkweg venue in Amsterdam, Netherlands and hosted by Cornald Maas and Selma Björnsdóttir.[9]

At Eurovision

Claudia Faniello during a press meet and greet

According to Eurovision rules, all nations with the exceptions of the host country and the « Big 5 » (France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom) are required to qualify from one of two semi-finals in order to compete for the final; the top ten countries from each semi-final progress to the final. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) split up the competing countries into six different pots based on voting patterns from previous contests, with countries with favourable voting histories put into the same pot.[10] On 31 January 2017, a special allocation draw was held which placed each country into one of the two semi-finals, as well as which half of the show they would perform in. Malta was placed into the second semi-final, to be held on 11 May 2017, and was scheduled to perform in the first half of the show.[11]

Once all the competing songs for the 2017 contest had been released, the running order for the semi-finals was decided by the shows’ producers rather than through another draw, so that similar songs were not placed next to each other. Originally, Malta was set to perform in position 5, following the entry from Macedonia and before the entry from Romania.[12] However, following Russia’s withdrawal from the contest on 13 April and subsequent removal from the running order of the second semi-final, Malta’s performing position shifted to 4.[13]


The Maltese performance features Claudia Faniello wearing a glittery silver full-length tight-fitting formal dress, taking inspiration from her music video of the song « Breathlessly ». The LED backdrops are mostly dark blue. Claudia appears on the LED backdrop, sometimes with just a close-up of her face and sometimes with a full body shot. The chandelier is prominent, which is also taking inspiration from the setting of the music video.

Points awarded to Malta

Jury members

The following five members will comprise the Maltese jury: [14]

  • Kevin Abela – Chairperson – principal of the Trumpet Malta Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Whitney Cremona – singer
  • Karl Bonaci – TV director
  • Chiara Siracusa – singer, represented Malta in the 1998, 2005 and 2009 contests
  • Mark Spiteri Lucas – teacher, musician, band leader, songwriter, arranger


  1. ^ « Malta Country Profile ». EBU. Retrieved 13 August 2014. 
  2. ^ Lee Adams, William (29 December 2016). « MALTA’S EUROVISION 2017 SONG WILL NOT BE CHANGED AFTER THE NATIONAL SELECTION CONTEST ». Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  3. ^ Lamp, Andy (3 November 2016). « PBS ANNOUNCES CHANGES FOR MALTA EUROVISION SONG CONTEST 2017 ». Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  4. ^ Gallagher, Robyn (21 December 2016). « MALTA: PBS REVEALS 16 FINALISTS FOR MALTA EUROVISION SONG CONTEST 2017 ». Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  5. ^ Roxburgh, Gordon (19 February 2017). « Claudia Faniello becomes the 30th Maltese representative at Eurovision ». European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  6. ^ Quinn, Angus (18 February 2017). « CLAUDIA FANIELLO WINS THE MALTA EUROVISION SONG CONTEST 2017 WITH « BREATHLESSLY« « . Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  7. ^ Kavaler, Ron (22 March 2017). « ISRAEL CALLING! EUROVISION PROMO EVENT SET FOR APRIL 3 TO 6 ». Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  8. ^ Laufer, Gil (5 April 2017). « Tonight: Israel Calling 2017 to be held with 28 participating countries ». Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  9. ^ Jordan, Paul (29 March 2017). « Eurovision in Concert sets a new record with 33 acts ». European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 30 April 2017. 
  10. ^ Jordan, Paul (25 January 2017). « Semi-Final Allocation draw to take place in Kyiv ». Retrieved 25 January 2017. 
  11. ^ Jordan, Paul (31 January 2017). « Results of the Semi-Final Allocation Draw ». European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 31 January 2017. 
  12. ^ Jordan, Paul (31 March 2017). « Semi-Final running order for Eurovision 2017 revealed ». European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 12 April 2017. 
  13. ^ « EBU: « Russia no longer able to take part in Eurovision 2017« « . European Broadcasting Union. 22 April 2016. Retrieved 22 April 2016. 
  14. ^ Jordan, Paul (29 April 2017). « Who will be the expert jurors for Eurovision 2017? ». European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 3 May 2017. 

See also