The history of the “Idol” TV reality singing franchise in the Philippines has been a rather spotty one. For instance, it never could stay in a single network for more than a season; and with every new network change came a significant rebranding of the local version. “Philippine Idol,” the first of these shows, aired on ABC5 (now TV5) in 2006. When a follow-up on that network became unlikely, Fremantle Media awarded the franchise to GMA7, which aired “Pinoy Idol” in 2008. Again now next season came of it. Now, a third iteration of “Idol” for the country is coming, courtesy this time of ABS-CBN.
CNN Philippines has it that “Search for the Idol Philippines,” or just “Idol Philippines” for short, will be premiering sometime this year as another addition to ABS-CBN’s multi-label stable of international reality show franchises. The new show will be fronted by a who’s who of celebrities from the network, including those who had been formerly part of the network that once carried “Pinoy Idol.” Go-to ABS-CBN music program host Billy Crawford has been named as presenter of “Idol Philippines” and a panel of judges has been formed. Their most prominent member and possible “Simon” is none other than Asia’s Songbird.
Regine Velasquez has been announced to be part of the panel of judges for “Idol Philippines,” alongside fellow singer Moira De La Torre, actor James Reid, and comedian Vice Ganda. Being the most “senior” judge among them, especially with regards to musical recording artistry, Regine might be pushed to become this competition’s counterpart to iconic former “American Idol” host Simon Cowell, famed for his sharp criticism and sharp eye for talent. While no information has been hinted at about Regine’s judging style for the show, she seems likely to be giving the weightiest contestant opinions.
Official social media accounts for “Search for the Idol Philippines” have revealed audition details for interested wannabe singing superstars. General auditions are to be scheduled in several major cities across the country, among them Manila, Baguio, Batangas, Cebu, Bacolod, and many others. The age range for “Idol Philippines” contestants is between 16 to 28 years old. ABS-CBN has yet to announce when the auditions, and the show itself, will begin.
The “Idol” franchise, developed by Simon Fuller and Fremantle, started in the UK in 2001 with “Pop Idol.” It became globally popular with its US version “American Idol,” which produced stars over like Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, and Katharine McPhee across its 16 aired seasons, with a 17th also coming sometime this year.
Image courtesy of ABS-CBN News