America is finally getting its very own Eurovision: Everything to know
Eurovision grew out of the dream for a united European consciousness and has since spread to include countries from the middle east, and as far as Australia. The Eurovision competition has grown into one of the biggest singing competitions in the world, helping to launch countless musicians from ABBA to Zelmerlöw. Now an American brand of Eurovision is set to debut in 2021, The American Song Contest.
What’s the American Eurovision going to be like?
The American Song Contest will keep a similar format to Eurovision and include solo singers, duos, and groups of up to six members. The competitors will be from each of the 50 states and will perform original songs that can be in any musical genre. The competition will come to a head in a March-Madness style single-elimination finale.
Much like the Eurovision voting format, The American Song Contest will have US-based music professionals serve as the jury for the first set of points. The second set of points is given by viewers at home electronically casting their votes for their favorite performances.
Who’s producing the American Eurovision?
Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Ola Melzig, Peter Settman, and Ben Silverman are producing the U.S. spin-off. Björkman, Melzig, and Settman stated how excited they are to start this new show, “Imagine if music was an Olympic sport and artists from all over the world came together to compete for the gold. That’s the Eurovision Song Contest. The American version will be different than anything seen before.”
The producers go on to say that this will be different from anything “on U.S. television, marrying the fanfare and excitement of March Madness and the NFL playoffs with the artistry and beauty of world-class performances.” It’s clear that the producers are expecting big things, and if The American Song Contest is done right it might even become more popular than Eurovision one day.
Ben Silverman knows how to produce European shows for the American market
Ben Silverman has had successful experiences bringing European programs to America in the past. You can thank Silverman for the American versions of The Office, Big Brother, and The Weakest Link, all of which went on to become incredibly more successful than their European counterparts. Silverman, a self-professed Anglophile, says the Eurovision concept was hard to bring to American audiences.
Ben Silverman says he’s spent 20 years trying to bring this to America. “When I was chairman of NBC, when I was an agent at William Morris, and when I started at Reveille. I just love the format.”
It’s the perfect time for Eurovision to come to America.
After all those years trying to get Eurovision to America, Silverman states that the time might finally be right, “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.”
The American Song Contest is set to premier during the holiday season of 2021, so it’s still a little ways away. For those who are itching to get their Eurovision fix, Netflix just picked up the streaming rights for all the new and old seasons of the competition.
Unfortunately, the 2020 Eurovision competition was cancelled due to the global pandemic, but if you’re looking for new Eurovision content, you should check out Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga on Netflix, starring Will Ferrell and Rachel MacAdams.