In a surprise announcement early this morning, the Croatian broadcaster HRT revealed the 18 artists and 4 reserve artists that will be taking place in Dora 2023.
After an open submission period that began in September, 196 entries were received for the broadcaster which is only 12 more submissions than in 2022. All competing entries were decided by a nine person expert panel comprised of Head of Delegation Željko Mesar, Zlatko Turkalj, Robert Urlić, Ema Gross, Igor Geržina, Željen Klašterka, Ivan Horvat, Tomislav Krizmanić and Dražen Miočić .
The eighteen selected artists and songs are:
- Barbara Munjas – “Putem snova”
- Boris Štok – “Grijeh”
- Damir Kedžo – “Angels and Demons”
- Đana – “Free Falin”
- Detour – “Master Blaster”
- Eni Jurišić – “Kreni dalje”
- Hana Mašić – “Nesreća“
- Harmonija Disonance – “Nevera (Lei, Lei)”
- Krešo and Kisele Kiše – “Kme kme”
- Let 3 – “Mama šč!”
- Maja Grgić – “I Still Live”
- Martha May – “Distance”
- Meri Andraković – “Bye Bye Blonde”
- Patricia Gasparini – “I Will Wait”
- Tajana Belina – “Dom”
- The Splitters – “Lost and Found”
- Top of the Pops fr. Mario Petreković – “Putovanje”
- Yogi – “Love at First Sight”
Eurovision fans will be quick to notice that former Dora winner Damir Kedžo is making his return to the national selection. Damir was supposed to represent Croatia at the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest, but due to it’s cancellation never received the chance. Also returning is Đana, who competed alongside Damir and finished in 6th place out of 16 entries.
In the event that any of the 18 finalists cannot compete in Dora 2023, HRT has selected the following as back-up participants and songs:
- Lana Mandarić Lanchi – Sama
- Mirna Skrgati – “Odlazi”
- Voice For You – “On the Same Train”
- Roasanna Kumerle – “Talking to Me”
Dora 2023 is set to take place on February 11th in the Marino Cvetković Sports Hall in Opatija as it has been since it was reintroduced as the national selection in 2019. Croatia has struggled to qualify into the grand final, with their last qualification occurring back in 2017 with Jacques Houdek’s song “My Friend”. In both 2021 and 2022 Croatia barely missed out on qualification due to an 11th place finish in the semi-finals.