CLASH OF THE CHOIRS – Premieres December 17th on NBC

CLASH OF THE CHOIRS - Patti Labelle With Her Choir

Patti LaBelle: “You have to sing like a running white woman afraid of a black man snapping her bag.”

With the Holidays around the corner and television quieting down a bit, I thought I would mention NBC’s new reality show CLASH OF THE CHOIRS, a four-night musical event.

Clash of the Choir enrolled the help of five musical superstars – Michael Bolton (New Haven), Patti LaBelle (Philadelphia), Nick Lachey (Cincinnati), Kelly Rowland (Houston), and Blake Shelton (Oklahoma) – to assemble amateur choirs of 20 people from their hometowns and compete live for the title of America’s best choir.

Clash of the Choirs will air on four consecutive nights starting Monday December 17th at 8 pm. The first night the show will last two-hours from 8 to 10pm, one hour the second night (December 18), two hours the third night (December 19), and one hour the fourth night (December 20).

Maria Menounos will host the four night event.

Last week, I took part of a conference call with Michael Bolton, Patti LaBelle, and Jason Raff (Executive Producer) to learn a little more about what we can expect from Clash of the Choirs. Here are some of the things they had to say.

Each choir is playing for charities in their hometowns that are important to them. Patti LaBelle will give the proceeds to Philadelphia for cancer, and Michael Bolton will give the proceeds for the domestic violence services of Greater New Haven, which involves shelters and families living shelters.

The show will consist of a three panel judge, commonly known on reality competition shows. After each choir performs, the other artist will make their comments, but ultimately it will be up to the American public to vote for their favorite choir.

There were only two rules during the audition process that the artists had to follow, candidates had to be over 18 and had to be amateurs. This prevented the artists from picking professional singers they knew, like background singers. In Michael Bolton’s choir, the ages range from 20 years old to 77. As for Patti LaBelle’s choir, some of them have church experience, some have never auditioned before in their lives, and some have never sang at church.

So far, choirs have had 40 hours of rehearsal, which took place during three weeks. None of the choirs have heard what the other choirs sound like.

Each choir has to learn seven songs to be performed, which range from hip-hop, rock to country western, and pretty much everything. Every artist is picking the songs to be performed. In the first show, the choirs will sing one song in addition to a group number. In addition, we will see the whole selection process of the choirs and some of the training. On the second show there will be one performance again. On the third show, each choir will perform three time. Which will lead into the finale. At the time of the conversation, the finale details hadn’t been decided yet. However, we will see all the choirs back during and Jason Raff promised some surprises.

CLASH OF THE CHOIRS - Michael Bolton with his Choir

Michael Bolton made a point that Patti LaBelle is going to demand excellence from her choir. As for him, he feels like this is a great training ground for all of his 20 choir members.

What attracted Michael Bolton to the project is the opportunity to bring 20 people together as one voice and walk them through the process of a professional preparation for a national television event in front of millions of people.

You’re watching other people become inspired by the pure love of singing. And it takes you back to what it was all about when you first started. And that the high road to me of it. That’s the depth of it to me.

I have to admit, after hearing more about the show and how passionate the artists are about their choirs, I will be tuning in to the show. Plus, musical themed shows always appeal to me.

Check out two previews for Clash of the Choirs below.