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🇵🇹 Road to Malmö: Portugal

We can not wait for the Eurovision Song Contest in Malmö. Therefore, we have a closer look at one of the contestants every day. Today: Portugal.


Iolanda Costa, or just Iolanda, is a singer and songwriter from Portugal. She was born on November 4, 1994, in São Pedro, Figueira da Foz, but later moved to Pombal. That’s where she fell in love with music, thanks to her parents who helped her start learning music. She first studied at a local school and then at a conservatory. When she was 14, she tried out for a singing contest on TV but didn’t get far. She tried again on a different show when she was 17 but also didn’t make it to the big stages.

After high school, Iolanda went to Lisbon for college, where she studied Communication Sciences. While there, she sang in bars and entered talent contests to get noticed. Later, she moved to London to learn more about songwriting. In 2014, she was on The Voice Portugal but didn’t get picked by the judges.

Iolanda’s big break came in 2022 when she helped write a song for a festival. In 2023, she released her own music about her time during the COVID-19 pandemic. By 2024, she won the national contest with her song “Grito,” meaning she’ll represent Portugal in the Eurovision Song Contest.

Festival RTP Da Canção

Already since Portugal’s first participation in 1964, the song is selected via Festival RTP Da Canção. This year, there have been two semifinals with 10 songs each. Six songs per semifinal headed to the final. Jury and televoter did not agree. While the jury voted for Iolanda, the televoter prefered João Borsch. In the end, Iolanda gained the most votes.

Portugal in the Eurovision Song Contest

As said, Portugal debuted in the Eurovision Song Contest in 1964. Unfortunately, António Calvário ended up with zero points. Very often, Portugal submitted unique, typical Portuguese, entries. And very often, Portugal ended up at the bottom of the scoreboard. For many years, Portugal did not enter the top-5 of the contest.

Everything changed in 2017, when Salvador Sobral represented Portugal. With the song “Amar pelos dos”, penned by his sister, Sobral brought the trophy back home to Portugal.

Last year, it was Mimicat who represented Portugal and reached the final with her song “Ai coração”.

Salvador Sobral, photo: EBU/Andres Putting

The Bookmakers

The betting odds currently predict a 34th place for Portugal in the Eurovision Song Contest. However, as soon as we know more about the staging and the live performance, that might completely change.

The song

And this is the song:


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