And then completely fail on live television
By Jennifer Lin (Music Director)
South Korea's "I Can See Your Voice" is a television show with a pretty interesting premise. The show invites a celebrity singer each week who has to choose a person from a group of 7-8 pre-selected contestants that the show's producers and writers have screened. The celebrity then has to perform a duet with the chosen contestant with no prior rehearsal.
The main catch? No one knows if the contestants are actually talented or completely tone deaf.
ICSYV goes hard in each extreme. Either the contestants are incredibly skilled (some have used their newfound spotlight to launch singing careers) or absolutely, horridly terrible. Now in its third season, the show doesn't allow the contestants to speak at all. Instead, celebrities must judge their potential duet partners based on their appearance, ability to lip sync, and the deductions from a panel of other celebrities and singers. If the contestant is tone deaf, they win the equivalent of $5000. If they're talented, they get the opportunity to record and release a digital single with the celebrity singer.
Whenever I need a good laugh, I go through YouTube and watch all of the duets with tone deaf people. Here to start you off is singer Hwanhee (of Korean R&B group Fly to the Sky) and the lucky girl he chose to sing with:
Incredibly, because the show encourages tone deaf people to participate and treats them with a sense of awe, I don't get the feeling they're being exploited like the poor American Idol contestants who all get cut into a terribly depressing reel. (Also, she got paid $5000, and the joke is really on singer Hwanhee, who was so incredibly confident she would be skilled.) So more power to you, tone deaf people of South Korea! Long may ICSYV air on your television sets.
JENNIFER LIN has very emotional connections to inanimate objects and is obsessed with polka dots. She works in and around Los Angeles as a music director/teacher, which means she drives way too much, drinks a lot of tea, and is constantly eating.
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