The Voice: Middle-Eastern style

Published July 18th, 2012 - 09:41 GMT
Four coaches who are popular performing singers will train and supervise participants in the program relying on the quality of the singing talent.
Four coaches who are popular performing singers will train and supervise participants in the program relying on the quality of the singing talent.

The Dubai-based Middle Broadcasting Center (MBC) has announced the launch of the Arabic version of the singing competition television show “The Voice.”

The show will feature 100 participants across the Arab world and they will receive training and supervision from four prominent Arab celebrity singers. The four celebrities – Kadim al-Sahir, Assi el-Helani, Shereen Abdelwahab, and Saber al-Rubai – will choose the participants in the program based on the quality of their voices without seeing them.

The competition’s “blind auditions” will be held in the UAE, Egypt, Kuwait, Tunisia, Lebanon and Morocco.

“For me the voice is the most important thing. As I have said in several previous venues, why do we think in such a way? Throughout the world there are remarkable singers and no one chose them for their appearance. They were chosen for their voice. The voice is what is important,” Iraqi singer Sahir told Al Arabiya.

Abdelwahab, meanwhile, said that she will be making her selection of candidates solely based on their voices and not on any other factor, such as belongingness.

“I am very happy with this challenge and with the big responsibility which MBC gave me to present the international program The Voice,” said renowned Egyptian actor Mohamed Karim, who will host the show.

With the addition of “The Voice” to the list of global talent-spotting TV formats, exclusive to “MBC Group” and millions of viewers, via its different channels and multi-platforms, MBC owns the rights to the three top-rated global Talent shows, namely: “Got Talent”, “Idol” and now, “The Voice.”

In a press conference held in in Beirut to unveil the star “coaches,” MBC Group’s spokesman Mazen Hayek said “The Voice” is not only a leading global singing talent-spotting TV format, but specializes in identifying exceptional musical and singing capabilities of Arab participants who are “semi-professionals” and aspire for “second chances” in their careers - thus leading them to stardom and fame.

Hayek said MBC1’s “The Voice” is distinct from other talent shows in that it focuses on the singing voice, coaching, and engagement with viewers by the use of social media.

The Voice” as a format

The program consists of three phases: Blind Auditions, the Battle Rounds, and the Live performance shows. Four coaches, all famous stars and artists, will choose teams of contestants through the blind audition process. Each coach has the length of the candidates’ performance to decide if he or she wants that singer on his or her team; if two or more judges want the same singer then the singer gets to choose which coach they want to work with.

Each team of candidates will be mentored and developed by their coach. During the second phase, coaches will have two of their team members’ battle against each other by singing the same song, and the coach choosing which team member will advance to the next stage. During the final phase, the remaining contestants will compete against each other in live broadcasts. The television audience will help to decide who moves on. When one team member remains for each coach, the contestants will compete against each other in the finale.

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