For the upcoming season, The Voice UK has introduced a new “brutal” twist, which was revealed on the red carpet before the first Blind Auditions in Manchester this week (Oct 18).
Emma Willis – who will be hosting the show solo following its move from the BBC – told Digital Spy about the change of format, revealing: “If you don’t push your button for a contestant, you don’t get to see them.
“So only the people who press the button get to see who it is, so if no one turns, no one sees who sung.”
So far, so harsh, but the presenter insists the twist will be “good for the show”, and will allow the coaches – including will.i.am, Tom Jones, Gavin Rossdale and Jennifer Hudson – to be less apologetic and more critical.
The Voice UK, which has just moved from the BBC to the home of X Factor, ITV is obviously trying to shake things up a bit. Emma goes on to explain the rational:
“When they see someone who hasn’t turned, it’s very apologetic. But if they haven’t seen that person and don’t have to interact directly, it’s a bit more ‘that was a little bit off key’, where they might not have said having seen them. So I think it’s a good thing for the show.”
In other words, denying the coaches who don’t hit their buttons the ability to come face to face with the singer they rejected, will mean less guilt and more honesty. Can you imagine the US version introducing this twist? Nope. Neither can I, as the show sells itself on creating a nurturing environment for their contestants. Apparently, there are already versions of The Voice across the world that have employed the format.
Meanwhile, new coach Jennifer Hudson explains her built-in advantage over the other coaches. As an American Idol alum, she knows what the contestants are going through.
“I do [have an advantage]!” the Dreamgirls star told Digital Spy. “I totally get them [the contestants]. I know how they’re feeling, I know what they’re going through, the odds they’re up against.
“Before I started performing in Hollywood I had all the time to rehearse a song but in this world you don’t get that much time, so you don’t get a chance to rehearse for as long as you want, or you might not feel as prepared as you want to be.
“So I know all of those setbacks that they face, and only having 1 minute and 30 seconds to display your whole world of talent. So those things I’m considering from my experience and I see it from the same perspective.”
The Voice UK begins in January. Just in time to help fill in that giant sized hole in our lives the absence of American Idol has left. So yeah. We’re covering it.