You are currently viewing 🇮🇸 Sneak Peek: Songvakeppnin Semi-Final 1 2024
Photo credit: RÚV

Söngvakeppnin returns to our screens again on Saturday 17th February, with a fresh crop of artists who may represent Iceland at Eurovision 2024.

Last year saw Diljá perform ‘Power’ in Liverpool, although unfortunately she did not progress to the Grand Final of the 2023 contest. However, this year Söngvakeppnin is independent from Eurovision: petitions received from the Association of Composers and Lyricists of Iceland (FTT) and activists of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement protesting the presence of Israel in this year’s competition have led broadcaster RÚV to announce that Iceland’s participation in the contest would be decided after discussions with the winner of Söngvakeppnin. To read The Phoenix ESC‘s statement regarding their coverage of Israel in Eurovision, click here.

All semi finalists must perform their songs in Icelandic. Two of the five competing artists in each semi will be chosen by televote to progress to the final, with RÚV reserving the right to choose a wildcard act if they wish. The finalists will then have the option to perform their songs in either English or Icelandic in the final.

Read on to find out all you need to know about the artists and songs competing in Semi Final 1 of Söngvakeppnin.

CeaseTone – RÓ

CeaseTone are an indie electronica band who formed when frontman Hafsteinn Þráinsson decided to extend his 2012 solo project into a group, bringing in Sólrún Mjöll Kjartansdóttir (drums) and Jökull Brynjarsson (synth). They are known for their strong live performances, having played music festivals such as All Tomorrow’s Parties and SXSW Festival in Austin, Texas. They have released two studio albums: ‘Two Strangers‘ in 2016 and ‘EgoTopia‘ in 2021.

CeaseTone will be performing the song ‘‘ (‘FLOW’) which is characterised by the electronica sound the band have become known for, gradually building in intensity as the song progresses.

Blankiflúr – Sjá þig

Inga Birna Firðjónsdóttir, who performs under the stage name Blankiflúr, is a singer-songwriter and designer who has grown up in both Sweden and Iceland. She is primarily known for her music in the electronica genre and released her debut album ‘Hypnopompic‘ in 2021.

Blankiflúr will be performing her song ‘Sjá þig‘ (‘Love You’). Featuring an electronica instrumental accompanied by soaring strings before building to a more dance-inspired chorus, could this be a real moment on stage?

ANITA – Stingum af

ANITA is a choreographer as well as a singer, having worked on a number of productions, including the musical ‘Chicago‘. She recently loaned her vocals to the summer 2023 dance track ‘Used To Be‘, which was produced by G. LOGI.

Her Söngvakeppnin ‘Stingum af‘ (‘Downfall’) also contains those same dance elements which should give the performer plenty of opportunities to showcase her impressive moves as well as her vocals. The Icelandic lyrics were written by Ásdís María Viðarsdóttir, who also competed in Söngvakeppnin 2014 with her song ‘Amor‘.

Sunny – Fiðrildi

Sunny is the stage name of Sunna Kristinsdóttir, who grew up in Bakkafjörður. The 30-year-old singer has spoken openly about experiencing a traumatic adolescence, including being a victim of sexual assault and experiencing mental health issues as a result of this, as well as dealing with the neurological condition epilepsy.

Sunny’s life experiences are laid bare in her song ‘Fiðrildi‘ (‘Butterfly’) which documents lyrically the depression and anxiety she has dealt with but also the resulting freedom she gained from art. Speaking to RÚV, she said:

Having a history of trauma and experience builds a certain maturity and understanding of emotions. It helped me with character creation and creating and writing scripts. You have a better understanding of emotions, not only your own but also those of others.


Sunny is the only artist in this semi to have not submitted an English version of her song, meaning it is highly likely she will sing in Icelandic should she reach the final.

VÆB – Bíómynd

VÆB consists of twin brothers Matthías Davíð Matthíasson and Hálfdán Helgi Matthíasson. They have been making music together since 2022, releasing their debut album ‘VÆB TÉKK‘ in that same year. The brothers combine dance and Scandinavian pop elements with rap.

Rap, dance and pop are all present in the pair’s Söngvakeppnin entry ‘Bíómynd‘ (‘Movie Scene’) which is sure to close the semi with a bang. Emerging as a popular act among Icelandic youth, could we see this in the final?

So now we’ve met the five artists taking part in Semi Final 1 of Söngvakeppnin, which two artists will qualify for the final and who will be heading home? Could we see a wildcard entry emergency from this semi? You can watch the semi on the RÚV website from 20:45 CET.

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