Australian Idol Viewers Will Be Surprised By Kyle’s “Hidden Softness”

Australian Idol Viewers Will Be Surprised By Kyle’s “Hidden Softness”

Australian Idol is returning To Screens after a 14-year hiatus, and a lot has changed….

TV talent show wannabees have been replaced with TikTok wannabees, skinny jeans have been swapped with boyfriend jeans, and Idol judge Kyle Sandilands’ spiky blonde hair has been usurped by something more Santa-like. 

He’s also become a father in that time. So has fatherhood softened Kyle? 

“Kyle will always be Kyle,” Majella Hay, Seven’s Head of Entertainment told B&T. “Whilst he might seem harsh he actually says things that you might be thinking at home, he’s just the one who has the guts to say it”.

Yet there were some signs of change. 

“I was surprised by how emotional he became in performances. I think there’s one point he actually says ‘damn, that beautiful little Baby of mine, its made me soft’. 

“I think there is a little hidden softness in there which might surprise some viewers”. 

But don’t worry sadists – there will still be plenty of dream-crushing. 

“Are you going to see bad singers who are going to be told that they don’t have a career in music? Absolutely you are, because that’s actually the music industry,” Hay said. 

 One thing that is different is the shift to hosting the auditions in regional areas, as well as metro venues. 

“We went out specifically to regional areas and rural areas to find those people that hadn’t had a chance to become a star”.  

In a move that I’m told isn’t specifically designed to make the rest of us feel ancient, this year sees more young people audition than ever before. 

“We almost got to the point where we had to say to the judges ‘stop saying, ‘Oh my God, you’re only 15’,” Hay said. 


The judges

And whilst today’s youths can make it big on platforms like TikTok and YouTube, for Hay the judge’s experience sets Australian Idol apart from social media platforms. 

“They’ve lived it,” she says. “The beauty about our panel is they are all completely different”. 

Kyle joins American Idol judge and Grammy award-winning singer Harry Connick Jr; Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter Meghan Trainor and eight-time ARIA Award-winning singer-songwriter Amy Shark.

For Katie Finney, Director of 7RED, the show brings back the power of live TV. 

“Australians stopped every week on that Sunday and Monday night to see who’s going to be in and who’s going to go out”. 

Back in the 2000s it wasn’t possible to watch things back on streaming services, “it was a totally different pace”, Finney said.

For Finney, streaming brings additional opportunities. 

“We can optimize our audiences,” she says. 

“If we are seeing that more people are watching it on the 7plus stream versus the linear stream, [we can]actually move the activity across”. 

Australian Idol is produced for the Seven Network by Eureka Productions. 

Australian Idol Premiering 7.30pm Monday, 30 January on Channel 7 and 7plus. 

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