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'The X Factor' and Pepsi announce YouTube partnership

by jmaloni
Thu, Jun 2nd 2011 12:25 pm

Online auditions begin today; singers and vocal groups can submit videos online at www.youtube.com/theXfactorusa

"The X Factor," the highly anticipated singing competition series debuting this fall on FOX, is giving fans an additional opportunity to audition for the show online via YouTube. Beginning today through June 9 - for one week only - solo artists and vocal groups 12 years old and over will have the opportunity to submit an audition video exclusively on YouTube at www.youtube.com/theXfactorusa.

YouTube auditions make it easier and more convenient than ever for hopefuls to audition for "The X Factor," giving more people the chance to become a global superstar or breakout music group and win a $5 million recording contract with Syco/Sony Music.

Entrants should demonstrate their singing ability by performing a song a cappella. Videos are limited to two minutes in length, including a 30-second introduction that explains who they are and why they have "The X Factor." Audition videos, which will be judged in a similar fashion to the live audition cities, will remain private and be viewable only by "The X Factor" team. Auditioners selected to move forward in the competition will be offered the opportunity to continue their audition in front of the judges. Visit www.youtube.com/theXfactorusa for more information and complete rules and regulations, as well as the full terms and conditions of the video submission process.

"I'm really happy we are launching auditions through YouTube," said judge and show creator Simon Cowell. "There is a lot of great talent online now, and especially young kids today are using YouTube to get themselves seen and heard. It's very easy, and it is $5 million after all! I'm very excited to see the auditions that might come through this."

"With the largest guaranteed prize in television history at stake, we've got to make sure that every potential superstar in the country has an opportunity to audition for 'The X Factor,' " said Mike Darnell, president of alternative entertainment at Fox Broadcasting Company. "YouTube allows us to broaden our talent search beyond our audition cities to the tens of millions of YouTube users in the U.S."

"We're thrilled for the opportunity to reach deep into the vast YouTube community and utilize their passion, power and opinion to help us find the next global superstar or breakout music group on "The X Factor,' " added executive producer Cecile Frot-Coutaz.

"YouTube is thrilled to partner with FOX, Syco, FremantleMedia and Pepsi to engage the YouTube community in 'The X Factor' phenomenon in the U.S.," said Robert Kyncl, vice president of TV and film entertainment at Google.

In a departure from other singing competition series, the first time contestants audition for "The X Factor" judges, they will do so in front of an audience of thousands - raising the stakes and increasing the pressure to impress not only the judges, but also a potential legion of fans. This will be the ultimate test to prove they have the vocal ability, charisma and stage presence that it takes to win an unprecedented $5 million recording contract with Syco/Sony Music.

As previously announced, Pepsi will serve as an official sponsor of "The X Factor." The comprehensive sponsorship includes an extensive, multi-platform digital and experiential marketing partnership; weekly in-show integrations and placements; and an immersive content experience online.

"We are excited about this phase of our 'The X Factor' partnership, because the YouTube auditions open up the opportunity for literally millions of people to chase their dreams - something that no other show has been able to do," said Frank Cooper, chief engagement officer at PepsiCo Beverages America. "And Pepsi is fundamentally about providing meaningful, fun opportunities to consumers in every part of the country, both on- and off-line."

To encourage fans to get involved with the live auditions and generate conversation leading up to the premiere, Pepsi has embedded social media features, including links to the Pepsi Foursquare page (foursquare.com/Pepsi) highlighting the upcoming live audition venues; the Pepsi YouTube page (YouTube.com/Pepsi) showcasing video from "The X Factor" audition crowds; the Pepsi Twitter account (@Pepsi) where fans can track news with the hashtag #PepsiXFactor; and the Pepsi Facebook page (Facebook.com/Pepsi) where fans can look for exclusive "The X Factor" content and features.

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