The First Talent Series in Canada for Kids 15 and Under (Toronto, Canada) After an intense cross-Canada search, host Adamo Ruggiero (Degrassi: The Next Generation) and a panel of judges Ð musician Suzie McNeil (Rockstar: INXS), songwriter Christopher Ward and music marketing exec Steve Cranwell Ð have chosen 12 young hopefuls to participate in YTVÕs highly anticipated talent series, The Next Star, premiering on Friday, July 18 at 6 p.m. ET/PT. ÒWe were thrilled with the response we received at the casting calls. Parents and kids turned up in droves in cities all across Canada to audition for The Next Star,Ó said Jocelyn Hamilton, VP Content, Corus Kids Television. ÒThis is going to be a programming event that will keep Canadian kids and their families tuned in throughout the summer to witness the journey of these young talented singers.Ó Produced by leading Toronto distributor and producer Tricon Films and Television in association with YTV, the first two episodes feature young hopefuls from across the country. Twelve singers will continue to participate, with six chosen to be mentored throughout the remaining 10 episodes, but only one will be The Next Star. The six featured performers will receive guidance from a panel of industry professionals on how to tackle the music industry as they are challenged in every aspect of the biz Ð from vocal exercises to participating in media interviews to perfecting a signature look. ÒYTV is thrilled to be bringing its viewers this original series that takes a fresh approach to the talent search process,Ó said Scott Dyer, EVP and General Manager, Corus Kids and Nelvana Studios. ÒThe kids donÕt just compete; theyÕre learning every step of the way. There may only be one Next Star at the end of the summer but everyone is going to leave the show a winner.Ó Viewers at home will vote for their favourite performer via www.YTV.com and text message, determining who will receive a recording contract with CanadaÕs leading music company Universal Music Canada, have their single included on YTVÕs Big Fun Party Mix 10, plus a professional music video and personal guidance from music industry hit-makers. All six singers will have a song included on The Next Star CD, scheduled to be released after the showÕs September finale. Fans can also find loads of entertaining content on www.YTV.com, from bios and photos of the host, judges, and participants, to exclusive streamed clips and personal moments with the 12 singers, to inside looks at upcoming episodes. Viewers can also join the community of fans through The Next Star message boards and sign up to receive a Next Star newsletter which will feature the freshest news and show developments. YTV, now in its 20th year, is a leading entertainment brand for kids in Canada. The network is seen in over eight million homes. As a major force in kidsÕ entertainment, YTV has triggered over $1 billion in Canadian independent production; has a highly interactive website that averages over 90 million monthly page views; publishes a successful kidsÕ magazine, Whoa!; and conducts a highly respected annual survey, The YTV Tween Report. YTV is owned by Corus Entertainment, a Canadian-based media and entertainment company. Corus is a market leader in specialty television and radio with additional assets in pay television, advertising and digital audio services, television broadcasting, childrenÕs book publishing and childrenÕs animation. The companyÕs multimedia entertainment brands include YTV, Treehouse, W Network, Movie Central, Nelvana, Kids Can Press and radio stations including CKNW, CKOI and Q107. Corus creates engaging branded entertainment experiences for its audiences across multiple platforms. A publicly traded company, Corus is listed on the Toronto (CJR.B) and New York (CJR) exchanges. Experience Corus on the web at www.corusent.com. Tricon Films & Television is one of CanadaÕs largest independent production and distribution companies. Tricon has established itself as a leader of high quality factual and scripted content and remains committed to producing and distributing programming that performs both domestically and around the world. For more information on our programming please visit www.triconfilms.com. -30- For a high-resolution images: https://www.corusent.com/mediacentre/tv/YTV/details.asp?caption=Next+Star%2C+The For further information contact: Molly Merrick Publicist Corus Entertainment Inc. (416) 530-2247 Samantha Taus Unit Publicist Holmes Creative Communications 416-628-5612