American Idol became a national phenomenon overnight. Millions of Americans tune in to this Fox hit series each week to see aspiring singers vie for the title of American Idol and a chance to achieve fame and fortune in the music industry. The television show’s auditions begin with hundreds of interested contestants, including some very humorous, less-than-talented singers. As the show progresses, America votes for the singers it wishes to see continue in the competition.
The process is simple, and three dedicated fans of the show, sophomores Kari Gertz, Emily Cullings and Mila Adamova, decided to bring a taste of American Idol to Colgate. Thanks to Adamova’s involvement at CUTV and the previous incarnation of the show created three years ago by Will Cathcart ’05 and current senior Rodney Mason, Colgate Idol was reborn.
“Our aspiration is to make a show that will both display the musical talent of Colgate students and be fun to watch,” Colgate Idol co-producer Adamova said. Fellow co-producer Cullings commented that she “got involved because for the last three seasons, I’ve been a huge fan of American Idol … my friends and I were sure that Colgate has untapped singing talent, and we thought making a Colgate Idol version would be an opportunity to combine talent and humor. We’ve been working on the idea for a long time, and are excited to finally be making the show.”
The first round of Colgate Idol auditions will take place at the CUTV studio this afternoon. These auditions will be filmed and judges will determine which contestants will continue to the next round, which will be held in front of a live audience in Golden Auditorium in Little Hall next Saturday. Following the performances in the second round, Colgate students, like the American public in American Idol, will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite contestants. Voting will take place in an online survey, and the results will determine which aspiring singers continue on to the final round. This round will be held on April 8, also in Golden Auditorium, with students encouraged to come and support their favorite contestants.
As fans of American Idol know, the judges become television personalities on which viewers rely in making their voting decisions. Those coveted positions, held on national television by Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Paula Abdul, will be held at Colgate by Gertz, Cullings and sophomore Martin Pinnes. “I’m also going to be a judge on the show, taking the role of a kind of Paula Abdul-like judge,” Cullings said. “People tell me that I’m overly nice in real life, too, so I don’t think it will be tough to pull off!”
Another important part of American Idol is the host, Ryan Seacrest. Sophomores Barnes Kelley and Brandon Lansche will serve as co-hosts of Colgate Idol.
The behind-the-scenes work for the production of Colgate Idol has proved to be an exciting challenge for the creators of the show. Adamova was involved with production on CUTV before Colgate Idol, so her experience helped the rest of the group immensely. “Through Mila, I learned how to edit film in the CUTV studios, and she has taught me so much about what goes into making a television show,” Cullings said.
Sophomore Melanie Fischer, who is involved in production work on CUTV’s The Bottom Line, ‘Gate Update and CUTV basketball broadcasts, will now also serve on the camera crew of Colgate Idol. “I’m excited to be a part of the show. It’s going to be a fun addition to the network!” Fischer said.
Due to the popularity of Fox’s American Idol, the Colgate community appears to be anxiously anticipating CUTV’s new series. “This season, American Idol has incredible talent; hopefully Colgate will be able to come close to matching it,” senior Vanessa Weller, a dedicated fan of American Idol, said. First-year Kate Hollerbush said, “Well, I don’t suppose that Il Divo 2 is out there waiting to be found on our campus, but it’s a pretty grand idea to give students a chance to debut their talent. I’m interested to see what Colgate Idol is going to produce.”
Even students who aren’t fans of American Idol are looking forward to the show. “I’m yet to get addicted to a reality show, but I’m looking forward to seeing Colgate Idol because I’ll actually know the contestants and it will seem more real to me,” sophomore Kate Bradbury said.
The contestants and crew of Colgate Idol encourage the Colgate community to get involved with this interactive show and watch the series premiere, which will air footage from today’s first-round auditions on CUTV. The definite time slot for the program is still to be determined, but tune in to CUTV and look for advertisements around campus announcing the first showing.