The CW to broadcast the final 3 episodes live as viewers get to vote for "The Next" via online and social media
Songs performed on "The Next" available for digital download following each episode
As the competition heats up and with an Atlantic Records recording contract awaiting the winner, The CW will broadcast the final three episodes of its new music competition series "The Next" live from Los Angeles on Thursday, Sept. 27 (9 p.m.), Tuesday, Oct. 2 (9 p.m.), and the special two-hour finale on Thursday, Oct. 4 (8 to 10 p.m.). During these live performance episodes, viewers will be able to vote online and through social media for their favorites, narrowing the field until one is chosen as "The Next."
Premiering Thursday, Aug. 16 (9 p.m.), "The Next" travels to cities across the country, including Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Orlando, Los Angeles and New York, searching for undiscovered artists on the verge of stardom. The finalists from the local cities will then converge on Los Angeles to compete for the grand prize over the final live episodes. Following every episode, the songs performed by the competitors will be available for download on all digital service providers, including iTunes and Cricket's Muve Music.
In each episode of "The Next," four music industry superstars - pop icon Gloria Estefan, country star John Rich, hip-hop star Nelly, and pop star and actor Joe Jonas - will drop in on the lives of four up-and-coming local singers in each city and have 72 hours to get them ready for a head-to-head singing competition at a well-known local venue. After performing in front of an audience filled with friends, family, local music fans and the four icons, one winner will be chosen to move on to represent their city in the semifinals. Then it's on to the next city and four more contestants.
As an extra twist to the competition, even the contestants who don't win in their home cities will still have a chance to compete in the finals - viewers across the country will be able to vote for their favorite among the performers who didn't make the first cut, and the contestant with the most votes will go on to the finals.
After six episodes in six different cities, each of the local winners and the fan favorite will battle it out on stage over the course of the final three live episodes until only one contestant remains. The vocalist left standing at the end will be rewarded a recording contract with Atlantic Records and the chance to open for one of the superstar icons.
Atlantic Records celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2008. Founded in New York City, the label literally grew from a one-room operation into one of the world's pre-eminent music companies. Atlantic has released a string of recordings that have had a profound impact on the course of modern music, its rich history including such musical icons as Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, John Coltrane and Led Zeppelin. The Atlantic roster today includes many of the world's most popular recording artists, among them: Bruno Mars, Jason Mraz, Matchbox Twenty, Kid Rock, B.o.B, Death Cab for Cutie, Flo Rida, Lupe Fiasco, Janelle Monáe, Shinedown, T.I., Trey Songz, Wiz Khalifa and Zac Brown Band.