Network is developing its own talent show based on Europe's 50-year-old Eurovision Song Contest. Competitors perform original songs.

NBC is preparing to take on Fox and American Idol with a high-profile talent show of its own.

The new show is based on Eurovision Song Contest, which has been airing in Europe for 50 years and has helped launch the careers of ABBA, Olivia Newton-John and Celine Dion. NBC is producing the show in association with Reveille, which holds the rights to the format.

The competition is open to amateurs and professionals—individuals or groups. And, unlike Idol, competitors must perform an original song.

NBC President Kevin Reilly made the announcement late last Friday.

While details on the show are still being worked out, it will employ a multimedia format, combining both online and televised components, NBC said.

Initial competitions will take place online on a state-by-state basis. Winners of the state competitions advance to the televised series to perform for the title.


“It’s a winning formula and Reveille will adapt it to include a more uniquely American flavor that will build to a dramatic crescendo in the season finale,” said Reilly in a prepared statement.

“Eurovision is the granddaddy of all talent shows and the Super Bowl of singing,” said Reveille CEO Ben Silverman, who will also serve as executive producer. “I can’t wait to tap into America’s multicultural heritage and see our regional flavor come to life.”

The voting will be left entirely to the viewers through an array of multimedia and high-tech methods.

The performer or performers of the winning original song will receive a recording contract and will have their single produced and released by a major record label.

Reveille also produces The Office and The Biggest Loser for NBC.

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