It has been announced that Irish traditional group Dervish are to represent Ireland at the 52nd Eurovision Song Contest in Helsinki next year.

The Co Sligo-based band will play a song which will be chosen following a public competition.

Songwriters have until 8 January to submit songs for consideration with more information available here.

The final four shortlisted songs will be performed by Dervish on a 'Late Late Show' Eurosong Special in February when the public will vote for the song to represent Ireland in Eurovision 2007.

Commenting on Dervish's selection, Kevin Linehan, Commissioning Editor, Entertainment Programmes, RTÉ Television, said: "With the Eurovision now an increasingly complex and competitive competition, RTÉ feels that Dervish's proven experience of delivering exciting performances to mass live audiences around the world makes them an exciting proposition for the Eurovision stage. We look forward to finding the best song for Dervish to take to Finland in 2007." 

Shane Mitchell of Dervish said: "We are honoured to accept RTÉ's invitation to represent Ireland at Eurovision 2007 and look forward to raising the roof of the Areena (sic) in Helsinki."