There were rumblings about the Eurovision Song Contest, coming to America, but now it appears that a US version of Europe’s popular music competition WILL air in America.
The format is set to debut during the 2021 holiday season, reports Variety.
Next Christmas seems a long way off, but considering how widespread and consistent the COVID-19 pandemic has been, here’s hoping the USA is healthy enough to host a massive new singing contest by then. The Eurovision Song Contest was cancelled this year, for the first time since it debuted in 1956, due to coronavirus concerns.
Acts will come from all 50 states
The premise for The American Song Contest will be similar to the European version. Professional musical artists, including solo singers, duos or groups up to six members can compete. Acts will come from each of the 50 states and will cross every musical genre to present original songs on the live televised event.
The format will position the artists head-to-head against other states’ artists in a series of televised qualifier competitions, leading to semi-finals and then finally the ultimate primetime Grand Finale. The format is compared to college basketball’s March Madness.
Propagate Content will create The American Song Contest Academy, a group consisting of music professionals based in the U.S. that represent all genres and backgrounds, from which juries of artists and music industry notables who, along with the regional audiences, will select top talent from all 50 states to compete.
Content producer and creative director Christer Björkman was a fan of the show, but ended up competing in 1992, representing his home country of Sweden. “Eurovision has been a dream project ever since I was a child,” Björkman told Variety. Of the American version, Björkman added: “To have a chance to use everything you know about the format and redo it from the beginning and to bring it to an audience that has no history with it is such a privilege.”
Executive producer Ben Silverman believes that the show comes at just the right time. “When America is more fractionalized than ever and we are dealing with so many issues that divide us, the one [thing] that truly unites us is our culture. … It can unite it by celebrating its diversity, its distinctions and in pulling everyone around its love of music and its love of song.”
It’s a competition where you root for your home state
Another producer, Anders Lenhoff agrees. “We’ve had countries at war with one another and when the contestants come on, we’ve seen them hug or cry afterward,” he says.
“It’s a competition where you root for your home state and your hometown and there isn’t another show out there that does that,” added Björkman.
Heck yeah. Pitting states against each other in a country as divided as America will surely have us all holding hands and singing Kumbaya by the end. Heh.
Interestingly, this appears to be a show without a deal. The press announces when it will air, but does not mention a network or streaming service where it might possible air…
In any case, the Eurovision Song Contest is good cheesy fun. Hopefully, the American version won’t take itself too seriously.
Watch the official American Song Contest trailer below