After what seemed like a wait for Singapore Idol 4 that took forever, an English reality singing competition will finally come on air from Channel 5 this year. The Final 1 is a new singing competition from the MediaCorp channel to find the next big star in Singapore. The competition coincides with the return of Chinese teen reality singing competition Campus Superstar this year as well. Teasers of the show were released from New Year’s Day until 11 January, the date flashed at the end of each teaser which coincided with the big announcement. The teasers starred YouTube hits such as Joshua Simon

At stake is a $100,000 contract including $50,000 in cash up-front. (Mental note: Hound said winner for free drinks at parties for the next 3 months after win.) The contract at stake is a two-year artiste management contract. So far, no word has surfaced on which artiste management company the winner will be signed to. Surprisingly, there is also no mention of a recording contract for the winner. As of press time, Popspoken is unable to confirm these details.

Nevertheless, we are really excited for The Final 1 to come on air especially in the current music climate in Singapore. Singapore acts are increasingly breaking into the mainstream, with acts such as ShiGGa Shay, Trick, Mark Bonafide and Daphne Khoo getting radio airplay. Recently, Hot FM 91.3 has started playing local music courtesy of Kevin Lester’s newest single Hear Me Go, returning back to their former WKRZ self. In the live performance field, new acts like YouTube sensations Tzire and Sam Driscoll are now muttered in the same breath as musicians such as Charlie Lim and Inch Chua. The Singapore music scene has gained a strong foothold of late, with media personalities such as TODAY music reviewer (and KAMCO Music chief) Kevin Matthews to thank for increased exposure.

A cultivation of the country’s indie cred has led to more of such acts gracing our shores of late. It even propelled radio station Lush 99.5FM to rebrand itself away from its jazzy roots and into indie to cater to the growing demographic. With K-Pop’s rising prominence as well, it will be interesting to see people of different musical tastes battle for top honours in the singing competition. More interesting than the contestants would be how the fans will react to the supposed multi-screen experience, promising continued access to the show and its contestants. News to look out for would also be the judging panel — would Florence Lian step out of her management role in MediaCorp Radio to join Dick Lee & Ken Lim once again or will a whole new team take over? Will there be mentors this time? We will have to wait for more announcements to come.

Watch the trailer from The Final 1 below! Submit your application to The application date closes February 12.