The months-long process of choosing the Estonian entry for next year's Eurovision Song Contest got under way today with a call for first-round submissions for Eesti Laul 2014.
The autumn selection round of the nation's Eurovision pre-final typically attracts around 150 hopefuls, who this time have until December 9 to get their recordings in to ETV, uudised.err.ee reported.
Since its introduction in 2009, Eesti Laul has developed into a platform for giving up-and-coming artists nationwide exposure as well as for deciding who will represent the country in the Europe-wide competition.
"The previous season showed that participation in Eesti Laul can bring prizes even to those artists who didn't end up in first place. For example, Winny Puhh went on to perform at Paris Fashion Week thanks to their fantastic show in the Eesti Laul final," said Mart Normet, head of entertainment at ETV.
Once the deadline for submissions has passed, a jury panel will choose 20 semifinalists from among the entrants.
The chosen 20 will then be divided into two groups of 10 to compete in semifinals on February 14 and 21. From each semifinal, five will be chosen to compete in the live final on March 1.
Rules for submission, in Estonian, can be found here. To qualify, the singer or composer must be either an Estonian citizen or resident.