Television

BBC searches for best young band in the world

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MUMBAI: BBC World Service has launched The Next Big Thing. This is a competition to find the best young group or solo artist on the planet. The contest is open to anyone as long as they are 18 or under, unsigned and performing original music.

Music by the entrants will be played on World Service throughout the autumn and a winner will be chosen by listeners and music industry experts in December during a one-hour special broadcast.

Producer Ben Williams says the aim of the competition is to give a helping hand to young artists who may not have access to the music industry. "There's fantastic musical talent all over the world but many people struggle to get that first break, and that's where we come in. We are looking for brilliant new music - the quality of the recording isn't important."

The contest will be run with the help of the BBC's language services, meaning the final shortlist of six acts could include songs in any language, giving it a truly global feel.

Artists who are interested in entering the competition should send one track to the World Service by 3 November 2006. CDs and tapes should be sent to The Next Big Thing, Bush House, London. MP3s can be emailed to the BBC at thenextbigthing@bbc.co.uk.

The contest is part of a special season of programmes from World Service Generation Next, which explores the world through the eyes of the next generation ? their passions, concerns and interests.

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