Archive for June, 2011
India's version of the X factor has launched with performances ranging from the amazing to the downright atrocious. But as one of many reality singing shows in India, can the format win over one of the world's largest television audiences?
All are veterans of the reality TV format, having starred on similar shows before. Bhansali was a judge on the Indian version of Strictly Come Dancing (Jhalak Dhikalaja).
"India is a great country with good music. This X Factor should beat every other X factor in the world," he says.
The show, which is already available in 24 countries including Australia and Indonesia, is set to launch in China and the United States this year.
"We are looking for this show to be making all the difference because this is the largest and the biggest market for the show. It's 1.2bn people we are talking about," says Raj Barua, from Fremantle Media, the show's creators, in India.
Mr Barua and his colleagues believe the growth and evolution of India's television market will make it a big success.
The show has taken more than a year of planning, says Barua. His colleagues at Sony TV, the network airing the show, hope it will fill a ratings hole left by the end of the Indian Premier League cricket season.
But the reality singing format is nothing new to Indian viewers.
As far back as the 1990s similar shows were airing on television. Meri Awaaz Suno (Listen to my voice), could lay claim to being one of the world's first reality singing shows, launching the career of Indian singer Sunidhi Chauhan.
In 1995, the Sa Re Ga Ma Pa show began. Arguably one of the most popular programmes on Indian television, it has a simple and familiar format, with contestants singing songs in front of a panel of judges before getting feedback.
Still on television now, the show has a number of spin-offs including a children's version, and shows in regional Indian languages. It is also popular with Indians around the world.
The first presenter of Sa Re Ga Ma was Sonu Nigam, who was later replaced by Aditya Narayan. Narayan is the current host of X-Factor. He is India's answer to the UK's Dermot O'Leary – his presenting style and mannerisms are identical.
Western formats like Pop Idol (Indian Idol), and Strictly Come Dancing (Jhalak Dikhhla Ja) are also popular here.
So will the X Factor win the approval of Indian audiences? Ratings for the current show are not yet out, but the calibre of the judging line up could help the show, says Jyoti Venkatesh, an entertainment journalist who has covered Bollywood for more than three decades.
Mr Venkatesh says the reality TV market is already saturated in India: "As of now, we've had enough of reality singing shows. Frankly speaking, there is no room for anymore, but you never know which one will break through and become a success," he says.
Originally Published On: www.bbc.co.uk – Original Article Here