Georgia’s Junior Eurovision 2024 campaign will kick off this evening, with ten young hopefuls battling it out over the course of four rounds, a semi-final, and a Grand Final to earn the right to represent the Caucasus nation in Spain later this year.

For the seventh year running, Georgia’s 1TV will use the Ranina singing contest as the method of selection for its Junior Eurovision participant.

A popular show within Georgia, ten children are put to the test over four rounds (or “tours”), and this evening’s tour will feature each contestant in a duet or group with past Ranina participants.

Host David Aladashvili – a celebrated concert pianist who graduated from Julliard – returns, as does Ranina 2022 finalist Vache Ghviniashvili as co-host and green room interviewer.

Familiar faces also return for judging duty, including head judge and award-winning composer David Evgenidze (the man with the patterned bandannas).

Kicking off on March 23, 2024 at 21:30 p.m. Georgian time, the first episode will introduce each young talent in a pairing with a former Ranina participant.

Assuming the show follows the format of previous years, the other tours will include a performance of a traditional Georgian song with the famed polyphonic choir Shavnabada, a performance with young Georgian jazz and acapella group Quintessence, and a performance of a song from either a famed Western musical or cartoon.

The ten participants this year are as follows:

  • Sandro Ashotia
  • Sandro Gurgenadze
  • Anastasia Iremadze
  • Ia Lichelle
  • Mate Martiashvili
  • Andria Mishvelidze
  • Barbara Morgoshia
  • Martha Nozadze
  • Andria Putkaradze
  • Giorgi Shashiashvili

Each contestant can potentially earn up to 120 points per round. There’s 10 points available for each judge across the four judging categories of vocals, performance, artistry and collaboration.

The five contestants with the highest scores after four tours (usually spread over eight weeks) progress to the Semi-Finals, where the top three progress to the Grand Final.

This is the seventh time that Ranina will be used to select Georgia’s representative at Junior Eurovision. The song is usually released close to the European Broadcasting Union deadline, with the songwriter selected internally (more often than not, it’s serial JESC winning songwriter Giga Kukhianidze).

The best performance by Georgia in the Ranina era is Mariam Bigvava, who came in 3rd at Junior Eurovision 2022 with “I Believe,” one year after Niko Kajaia’s 4th place with “Let’s count the Smiles.”

Last year, 1TV mixed up the formula slightly by pairing Season 6 winner Anastasia Vasadze with Season 5 finalists Nikoloz Kharati and Oto Bazerashvlili on “Over the Sky.” Georgia came in 14th, equaling their lowest ever placement of Giorgi Rotiashvili’s “We Need Love” from 2019.

Overall, Georgia has the most wins among Junior Eurovision nations with three victories (all Kukhianidze compositions) in 2008, 2011, and 2016.

Do #YOU think Georgia should persist with “Ranina” as its method of selection for Junior Eurovision? If so, do #YOU want to mix up the formula with a new type of singing challenge for the contestants? Let us know in the comments, in our forum, or in our social media.

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