Singer Anggun is set to be one of the judges for Indonesia’s own version of the X-Factor to premiere on Dec. 28.
Along with Anggun, the judging panel will include Ahmad Dhani, Rossa and Bebi Romeo.
The show that searches for new vocal talent is a franchise of the series created by Simon Cowell that originated in the UK.
“Not only do they sing, but there is an ‘X-Factor’. What is that? Actually, we do not have a definition of it, because everybody has their own ‘X-Factor’ that can bring them success,” said Ella Kartika, director of production and programming at RCTI, which is managing the program, at a press conference on Wednesday. The concept is similar to the show’s predecessors in other countries.
Like other talent shows, X-Factor consists of judges that are the jury for emerging talents.
But this time, they are also their mentors. “The theme is similar like talent search shows before, but some of the differences include judges involved in mentoring talent, no limitations in age requirements [15 and above], and also a different concept compared to established programs,” said Untung Pranoto, operations manager at RCTI.
The X-Factor has already gone through the audition stages and is now entering the “Bootcamp” stage in which 70 contestants will be filtered down to 24. These contestants will later be divided into four categories, Boys (six contestants aged 15-24), Girls (six contestants aged 15-24), Over 25s (six contestants aged 25-above) and Groups (six group contestants).
Each of the contestants in each category will be mentored by one of the four judges. For now, the contestants and their mentors have not been decided as they are just entering this stage.
“The big thing about the X-Factor is that it is about the battle between the jury,” said Glenn Sims, creative advisor of Fremantle Media Indonesia, which is working with RCTI on the show. This is a new element that has never been seen before in an Indonesian talent show, he added.
“I think it will be very interesting when we get to the battle stages of the competition, to see the mentors creating their own acts and styling, dressing and making their [talent’s] music choices,” Glenn said. These concepts can be seen before in X-Factor shows overseas that launched One Direction, Leona Lewis and Alexandra Burke, among others.
The judges themselves are excited about the new show.
“The program is very unique for me, because we as the judges are also going to be the mentors. Finding new talent and guiding them makes me very excited. I am looking for something unique from these artists,” Anggun said.
Ahmad Dhani, who was also a judge on Indonesian Idol, said he faced a dilemma when deciding whether or not to judge again.
“Indonesian Idol in 2012 was a huge success, I don’t know who was responsible for that. Judging on the X-Factor could be a trap for me, what if its prestige is lower than Indonesian Idol? Then it was because of Anang,” Dhani joked on who was responsible for Idol’s success.
“At first I had second thoughts about this, but because I promised RCTI, so I decided to do it. I hope the contestants will be better than Idol’s,” he added.
“In the end, the success of the show will depend on the ratings. So, it is how the team along with the judges collaborates in creating a show that, in the end, has to be remarkable,” Dhani said about the future success of the show.
Former child star and now singer Bebi Romeo said, “looking at previous Idol shows, this should be much more promising for the contestants.” This perhaps is because contestants now have the opportunity to be guided by such successful Indonesian singers and songwriters.
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