By Kitchana Lersakvanitchakul
With K-pop fever showing absolutely no signs of abating, reality TV is turning its attention to picking out young people with the talent to be part of the hallyu wave alongside the Thais that have already made it – think Nichkhun 2PM, Lisa Blackpink, Bambam Got7, Ten NCT and Sorn CLC.
South Korea’s Odyssey International and Odyssey Thailand are investing Bt100 million in the music competition and television reality show, “Battle of Dreams” which is slated to come to the small screen in September.
“Odyssey International is an artist management and development company that will produce artists in Asia using a professional production team. Odyssey International is behind a success of many Kpop artists,” said Odyssey International’s founder and chief executive Dr Anthony Park at the recent press conference to launch the show.
“Odyssey International will expand to more Asian countries. Our focus is on searching for young talents that we can mould into international stars. We work together closely with K-pop professionals and will coach young people to give them the breaks they need to make it big. This is why we are launching the talent competition,” he added.
Odyssey International’s plans extend far beyond Thailand, with the company aiming to invest some Bt1 billion into talent spotting in Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Indonesia, Philippines, Laos, Singapore, Brunei and Malaysia.
“We’re starting with Thailand because our team thinks that young Thais people have a lot of potential as evidenced by those who have already broken into K-pop like Bambam Got7. Our budget for Thailand is US$3 million (Bt94 million) and for the next five years we will host the Asian Championship in South Korea. The total project will cost roughly US$30 million,” Park said.
“We need to make this reality show interesting. The young talents who make it through the audition will be trained by a professional team in the basics of singing, dancing and rapping. The winner will be chosen by votes from the audience. After that, the winner will compete with others on the larger Asian stage,” explained Man Bae Choen, chief producer and co-founder of Odyssey International. “Our focus will be on creativity.”
“I think that the young people are very lucky to have this chance, and I’m happy to play a role in helping them achieve their dreams.” – Anuchyd Sapanphong
“Battle of Dreams” will kick off on Channel 7 HD on September 15 and show every Sunday until December 22 from 12.15 to 1.45pm. It will be hosted by young actor Sapol “Great” Assawamunkong and feature three mentors – Anuchyd “O” Sapanphong, Kanklao “Grace” Duaysienklao, and Thikumporn “Cheer” Rittapinun.
“Everyone sees me as an actor but, in my dreams, I am a singer. In the beginning, I was so excited to sign a contract with a major music label but I got the chance to be an actor instead. But my dream of singing and dancing is still alive. When I was invited to be a mentor for this reality show, my reaction was that young people are very lucky to have this chance, and I am happy to play a role in helping them achieve their dream. I can share my experience in front of a live audience. And I am well up on the trends in the entertainment circle including in K-pop music,” says Anuchyd.
Kanklao Duaysienklao is one of three mentors for “Battle of Dreams.”
Auditions will be held in all four regions, starting in the Northeast at Central Plaza Khon Kaen on June 5, then going on to Central Festival Hat Yai on June 12. The Northern heat takes place at Central Plaza Chiang Mai Airport in Chiang Mai on June 19 while the Bangkok round is being held at Central Plaza Chaeng Wattana in Bangkok on July 9 and 10.
Sapol “Great” Assawamunkong will make his debut as a host for “Battle of Dreams.”
“Both boys and girls aged 14 up can apply. After the audition, the applicants selected will be trained by professional coaches from South Korea. The final 30 qualifiers will participate in a camp in South Korea. Taking part in the camp is a good chance for them to learn and practise singing, dancing and rapping with South Korea’s popular coaches. The winners will be a girl group and a boy band, each with five members. The prize for two groups is Bt5 million and a seven-year contract,” said Supichaya Lee, president of Odyssey Thailand.
“I think the show will go down well in Thailand and receive lots of support. We at Odyssey look forward to welcoming you all to ‘Battle of Dreams’,” Park said.
Discovering the dreamers
- For updated information, please visit www.BattleOfDreams.com, and Battleofdreams on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, or call (02) 261 6290.