Kelly Clarkson To Judge On Newest Reality Singing Competition

By Zachary Swickey

You can add ABC to the list of stations attempting a vocal competition show. The new program, “Duets,” will premiere this summer and boasts Kelly Clarkson, Robin Thicke, Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles and living legend Lionel Richie as its judging panel.

We know what you’re thinking… seriously? Another singing reality show? However, to set themselves apart from the bunch – which now includes “American Idol,” “The Voice,” “The X Factor” and The CW’s upcoming “Star Next Door,” which has Queen Latifah and Gloria Estefan as judges – “Duets” will have the judges choosing two singers to be their duet partners each night. They will perform in front of a live studio audience each week on the show.

Of course, eventually one duet contestant will remain and the top prize is a coveted contract with Hollywood Records.

Clarkson said in a statement, “The simple fact that I get to go out and find two people that I believe in, sing with them every week, and help them accomplish their dream is an amazing thing that I can’t wait to be a part of!”

The ratings for “American Idol” have been suffering more than ever, “The X Factor” has received lukewarm attention and “The Voice” is becoming the new favorite, so who knows what ABC is thinking getting into the singing reality show game. “America’s Got Talent” will also be returning this summer, and while not a predominantly singing competition, the addition of Howard Stern as guest judges is bound to give ratings one heck of a boost.

Be on the lookout for “Duets” to premiere on ABC sometime this summer.