Some have voices like angels. Some are Hollywood glamorous. Some have attitude to spare. And some have it all – exotic and exciting, poised and passionate, they’re just naturally "Born to Diva".
On January 29, 2003, VH1 launched a vast search to uncover the world’s next megastar – a larger-than-life powerhouse who has the chops to step right into that exclusive sorority of super talents like Barbara, Whitney, Mariah, Aretha, Bette, Shania and Cher.
For the past several years, VH1 has celebrated these fabulous artists in their annual "Divas Live" specials. Kicking off on Monday, April 28 at 10:00 p.m. (ET/PT), the all-new series "Born to Diva" sets out to find an unknown "diva in the rough" to join that rarified club.
"Born to Diva" tracks the intercontinental musical search in eight episodes, from open calls to a nail-biting selection process that will culminate in a winner being chosen – and then performing onstage – during VH1’s star-studded "VH1 Divas Duets" special, airing live from Las Vegas on Thursday, May 22, at 9:00 p.m. (ET/PT).
VH1 traveled to five cities with a deep musical heritage and lots of eager talent – New York City, Miami, Philadelphia, Atlanta and London – where thousands of hopefuls lined up on the sidewalk for a chance to impress Sony Music executives Ron Grant and Ken Komisar. The only rules: the diva hopefuls must be at least 18 years old, not signed to a recording contract, and prepared to sing a cappella from a song list that ranged from Aretha Franklin’s "Think" to Patsy Cline’s "Crazy" to Whitney Houston’s "Greatest Love of All."
A&R veterans Grant and Komisar pared each city’s lineup down to five finalists, and superstar producer-songwriter Cory Rooney joined the panel to select a winner in each city. A celebrity judges was on hand to interview and inspire the five finalists in each city, with Patti LaBelle in Philadelphia, Kelly Rowland of Destiny’s Child in NYC, Lisa Stansfield in London, Gloria Estefan in Miami, and TLC’s T-Boz and Chilli in Atlanta.
Once the city-to-city search was completed, the five finalists from each city came together for a week-long "Diva Boot Camp" in New York City, where they met with image consultants, celebrity beauty stylists, and also worked alongside Rooney, Grant and Komisar to hone their musical approaches with new original tunes in a special recording session.
Following the boot camp all five finalists were given the chance to perform for former Sony Music executive Tommy Mottola, at New York City’s Capitale, where he, along with Corey, Ron and Ken whittled down the five finalists to three. These three will move onto Las Vegas where one of them will be given the opportunity to perform at the "VH1 Divas Duets" special.
Online voting for the winner will begin on May 11 and will conclude during the opening moments of VH1’s live "VH1 Divas Duets" special on Thursday, May 22. A few minutes later, all of America – including the three finalists themselves – will learn the name of music’s next superstar Diva, who will then perform a song live onstage. And "Born to Diva" follows it all, getting to know the girls and revealing the stories that fuel their passion, drive them to succeed and make them truly special. (Source: http://www.vh1.com/shows/dyn/born_to_diva/series_about.jhtml)