‘American Idol’ Producers Reveal Live Show Details, New 360-Degree Set (Video)

The new team says it's looking for both intimacy and rock ‘n’ roll spectacle as series goes into live rounds

Fox's “American Idol” will reveal its new stage next Tuesday when the show's live episodes begin. In many ways, all of the shows’ changes since last season have been building to this stage of the production.

“We have to do the audition shows and we have to do the Hollywood shows – and we love them, but we're all looking forward to the live shows and so is the audience,” executive producer Per Blankens told TheWrap and other reporters on Friday.

See video: ‘American Idol’ Contestant Emkay Nobilette Comes Out: ‘I'm Very Obviously Gay’

From appointing live sports veteran David Hill into the supervising executive spot for Fox and hiring MTV VMA producers Jesse Ignjatovic and Evan Prager, Grammys and Emmys director Louis J. Horvitz, as well as luring Rickey Minor back from “The Tonight Show” as musical director, all signs point to the upcoming live shows as the test of whether all the changes to improve this season have been worth it.

Starting with live rounds, viewers will be able to start voting at the top of the show instead of waiting until it ends. A new Facebook partnership will give insight into how the votes are trending – the first time “Idol” has ever revealed anything about the results live.

Also read: Don't Expect ‘American Idol’ ‘Re-Birth,’ Fox COO Says

Fox revealed the new stage for reporters on Friday – a collaboration between the producers, director and set designer Baz Halpin.

Here's what to expect:

1) 360-degree camera access
As many as 18 cameras can capture the stage from virtually all angles, giving it some flexibility.

2) New judges’ desk located in the center of the room that turns 360 degrees
Depending on which stage the show is using. One reporter compared it to a “lazy susan.”

Also read: ‘American Idol’ Partners With Google, Facebook for New Voting Options

3) Two stages
There will be a main stage and a B stage, which will make its debut during next week's rush week. It will provide “intimacy” for eliminations and options for using both stages during performances.

4) Audience goes up three levels
About 600 people will surround the stage, including the obligatory standing-only mosh pit and three levels of seats. ”We have a lot of fans all the way to the ceiling,” described Ignjatovic.

5.) Band split into sections left and right of the stage

See the video above.

“American Idol” will reduce the Top 31 to 13 starting with the Top Girls performing on Tuesday at 8/7c.

  • tony tan

    Gave the show one last chance because of the new judges but what's the real problem with American Idol is who they put through. Three singers on the first night should not be in this years final 30. Two of them were terrible and the other was borderline but other ones who were eliminated were better. All three are black. Jordan and Malaya were horrible but at 15 and 16 there's time to grow. But this is what Idol is all about. Lets use them for the shows purpose. Same goes for Emannuel. His story is what the show is using just like Odette last year. Four singers who got eliminated were better than these three. Keri, Madelyn, Casey, and Leah were way better than these three especially Keri who was fantastic. There is no way that these three great artist picked these terrible singers to go through without the producers urging. Totally scripted. It amazes me that this country is made up of 18% Latin American or Spanish and there is just one contestant. The Afro American percentage is 15% and they have 10 contestants already in and Nico may be eleven. Where are the Asians who make up near 5% and a growing percentage of Indians who make up the 2nd greatest population on this planet. I asked this to American Idol and they will tell you that will not make good television. So use these young people and give them false hopes especially these two young singers whose best advice was to go home and practice and develop your singing. Day two was a little better but again they picked a singer who just don't have the voice in Maryaelle Sellers but she again will give you good TV. Yes she is also black but before you call me a racist, I think Savion Wright deserved a spot and he is black. What I am saying is why American Idol is losing viewers and will sink like the X FACTOR is they won't let the real talent just dictate the shows success. They arranged this last year with Candice Glover winning when all the polls had Angie winning and the judges were hailing Candice the next Whitney Houston. Was part of this, the on going lawsuit with former black contestants versus American Idol. Yes I do and also the white guitar playing male artist was a part of the result last year. This year you gave us a facelift with these judges who are good but let them decide on the talent. American Idol you were worth watching but now you will be a dinosaur soon. Fox, you had a good thing in Idol but you let these producers ruin it.

  • Fred S

    How could that idiot judge Conick tell that young girl to say the first two line of her song and ask her if that is what she wants to be known for. If that was my daughter he would have a big problem. The show is a total joke. Singing doesn't count on this show. Done with it.