The Ten Network announced today that it has commissioned a new entertainment series, Don't Stop Believing, as part of its 2011 line-up.
The programme will feature musical groups from across Australia as contestants, competing against each other in weekly heat stages followed by a series of finals. It aims to showcase "some of the greatest songs ever in spectacular never-before-heard arrangements".
Ten quickly sought to differentiate Don't Stop Believing from the myriad talent show formats produced for television in recent years. The network said that the scale of the production and the focus on performances of the biggest musical hits "from stage, screen and pop music history" would set it apart from other programmes.
According to David Mott, the network's chief programming officer:
"Don't Stop Believing is a joyous format and a perfect fit for the big entertainment, feel good direction Ten has been heading for the last few years.
"We have had incredible success in identifying and airing excellent high impact performance shows and this is bigger and better than any we have ever undertaken."
Ten said that the programme would also feature a "Don't Stop Believing Super Group", comprising twelve professional singers and dancers who would perform at the start of each episode.
The Glee-inspired format was developed by ShineTV and GroupM Entertainment in Britain and will begin on Five this Sunday. The Australian version will be produced by Shine Australia, which is also producing Ten's new Junior MasterChef series.
Shine Australia's joint chief executive, Carl Fennessy, said that the programme would be "the first Australian series that combines singing and dancing in one spectacular show".
The decision to commission Don't Stop Believing as a replacement for So You Think You Can Dance Australia – whose future had been in doubt for some time – was flagged yesterday by TV Tonight.
Ten has described the new format as its "big new show" for 2011, emphasising its own high expectations for the series' popularity.
Media Spy discussion: Don't Stop Believing