Belgium: VRT announce SENNEK as first artist for Eurovision 2018

The Flemmish broadcaster in Belgium, VRT, have this evening announced SENNEK as the first act for this years Eurovision Song Contest in Portugal. The song will be chosen at a later stage. 

SENNEK (pictured above, source: Instagram) was announced as the first artist for the 2018 contest on the talk show Van Gils and Gasten this evening. SENNEK and VRT will present the song at a much later date.

Who is SENNEK?

SENNEK is the stage name for female soloist Laura Groseneken. Laura was born in 1990 in Leuven. Eurovision is not her first high profile project. Laura has previously worked on the 50th anniversary celebrations of the James Bond franchise in Belgium.

Besides singing, Laura also plays something called the melodica, which is a type if keyboard that you blow into. She does this alongside another famous Belgian musician, Alex Callier, under the name Hooverphonic. She wrote the song Gravity alongside him. The song became known globally when the worldwide brand Cacharel used it for one of their global advertisements. During the day, Laura works as a visual merchandiser for Ikea.

Successful format?

This is not the first time that an internal selection has been used to select the Belgian representative. More recently, in 2017, Blanche was selected using this method. She sung the song City lights, finishing 4th overall on 363 points. In 2015 The Voice Belgique Runner Up Loïc Nottet took his song Rhythm Inside to Vienna. He also finished 4th overall but with 202 points. In 2010 the runner up of the Belgian Flemmish X factor was internally selected. This was Tom Dice, and his song was called Me and My Guitar. He reached the Final for Belgium for the first time since 5 consecutive years of non qualification for them. He finished first in his semi final, but could only finish 6th in the Grand Final.

Belgium was unsuccessful in reaching the finals in 2011, 2012 and 2014, years in which they selected their song through a national final.

The only time Belgium was successful with a national final format recently, was in 2016. That year, VRT selected via their Eurosong national final set up. Laura Tesoro represented Belgium with the song What’s The Pressure? She performed first in the Grand final, then ended up finishing 10th overall with 181 points.