Before American Idol, there was the Eurovision Song Contest. The European singing competition has been a phenomenon since the 1950s, and now it’s finally coming to the US. “The American Song Contest” is scheduled to take place during the 2021 holiday season, but rather than pitting nations against each other, it will be representatives from different states.
According to a news release, “The American version of the Eurovision Song Contest will, as it is currently conceived, position the artists head to head against other states’ representatives in a series of 5-10 televised Qualifier Competitions, leading to Semi-Finals and the ultimate primetime Grand Final.”
The legendary contest has helped launch the careers of some of the world’s most popular artists, including previous winners Celine Dion and ABBA. To usher in the US version, an American Song Contest Academy will be formed of music professionals, who will create juries of artists and music industry figures to select the top talent from all 50 states.
Martin Österdahl, executive supervisor of the Eurovision Song Contest, said in a statement, “It’s time for America to experience this spectacle…Love of music is universal and celebration of music in different genres and styles can transcend boundaries and unite people. We are excited to have found the right partners to offer another series that our fans across the globe can fall in love with and to share this unique competition with the American people.”