Weighing the Worth of Chinese TV Singing Competitions

An in-depth listen

In the past two or three years, China’s televised reality singing competitions have taken the region by storm. These shows boast high-flying artists as judges and mentors while promising audiences fresh cream-of-the-crop talent. Shows such as ‘Sing! China’ and ‘I Am Singer’ boast viewerships in the hundreds of millions, and are rapidly solidifying their reputation as a viable source of opportunity and success for artists both established in the Mandopop scene and amateurs looking to find fame. Yet we are left with mixed feelings about the wider cultural impacts of these shows, so in this three-part series, we’ll explore their pros and cons in relation to three issues: brand China, the reality show format and finally their impact on the Mandopop industry. The purpose of this series is to encourage us all to think more critically about the entertainment we consume. Good entertainment is not necessarily good music, and when money talks, it's always worth having a care for those who listen.

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