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What is the American Song Contest?

The new singing competition hopes to draw upon the success of Eurovision across the pond, but faces an uphill battle to reach the television heights.

Premiere Of NBC's "American Song Contest"
Phillip FaraoneAFP

The American Song Contest is a new country-wide singing competition between all states and territories of the US.

The programme is an offshoot of Eurovision, a singing competition in which all European states, and Australia, compete in yearly. It is quite tongue-in-cheek and few nations put forward what would considered their best act each year. The international politics and alliances are some of the fun of the European version, which has been on TV since 1956. Show runners will be hoping the US proves different and divided enough to provide some of these moment.

Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson host the shows, which come out weekly. The first episode was released on March 21 and they will be released on NBC until the grand final.

How does the voting system work in America Song Contest?

In each of five heats, eleven or twelve artists compete in each; one from each state or territory. Four artists qualify for the semi-finals from each heat.

At the end of each heat, a jury will select one qualifier. Each jury includes a musical expert from each state or territory, having 56 in total. One act from each heat goes through to the semi-finals based solely upon this vote. Three more acts progress based upon a combination of the jury and a public vote. These three acts will be announced at the beginning of the next week's episode.

There will be two semi-finals with ten artists each as well as a wildcard that did not make it through the heats.

Ten finalists make it through to the grand final with two chosen directly by the jury. The rest, a combination like the heats.

The winner will be decided by a combination of jury and public voting.

When and where is the grand final of American Song Contest?

The final will be held in Los Angeles, California.

The programme will happen live at 8pm EDT / 7pm CDT.

Which countries participate in American Song Contest?

Only the US is involved with the programme, as it is an intra-country competition. However, it is not just the 50 states which are included. All US territories are included, as well as Washington D.C.

The territories are: American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.