It has been announced today that singer-songwriter Ryan O’Shaughnessy has been picked to sing this year's Eurovision song for Ireland. It will be a ballad called Together that was penned by O'Shaughnessy, Mark Caplice and Laura Elizabeth Hughes.
You may remember Ryan from his role as Mark Halpin in Fair City while he also impressed judges on Britain's Got Talent back and The Voice of Ireland in 2012.
In August of last year, RTÉ held a Eurovision Song Contest Forum and invited key industry professionals, songwriters and performers to come to RTÉ to gain a deeper insight into the present day contest from international Eurovision experts and key RTÉ decision makers. The forum created debate and fostered new ideas as to the way RTÉ might approach the song contest this year. Over 300 songs were submitted to RTÉ for consideration before the November deadline. The song Together was chosen after being selected by a panel of music industry professionals who listened to and judged the shortlisted final entries.
Ryan said, "As one of three songwriters on Together, I’m delighted it has been chosen to represent Ireland in Eurovision 2018, and on top of that, to be asked to perform for my country is an absolute honour. I plan on doing Ireland proud by bringing a song and performance to Eurovision that we haven’t seen since the days of ‘Rock and Roll Kids'. Last year’s winning song from Salvador Sobral was a beautiful, melodic piece, and I think it may have carved the way for the Eurovision to revert back to being a song contest where true songs can flourish. I can’t wait to get onto that stage and perform an honest piece for millions of people."
The Eurovision Song Contest semi-finals take place in Lisbon, Portugal this summer on Tuesday, May 8 and Thursday, May 10 with the grand final taking place on Saturday, May 12. Ryan will perform Together in the first semi-final on Tuesday in the Altice Arena.