USA has ordered 10 episodes of the reality series "The Choir," in which British choirmaster Gareth Malone tries to assemble ragtag groups of of amateruer singers into one glorious musical assembly.
The hourlong show, from Shed Media, is an American version of a British series of the same name. The announcement from USA senior vice president of reality development Heather Olander is part of the network’s efforts to branch out into reality and comedy, in addition to its beachy dramas.
In an departure from many cable outlets' strategies, USA is focusing, so far, on optimistic and inspirational reality shows. There aren't any housewives throwing champagne on USA, unless it happens on "Burn Notice": Both "The Choir" and USA's reality show "The Moment" focus on helping ordinary people achieve extraordinary goals.
"The Moment," hosted by supermarket clerk-turned-Super Bowl MVP Kurt Warner, lets people pursue dream jobs they abandoned in favor of a 9 to 5. The nine episodes of "The Moment" will air next year.
USA played clips from "The Choir" at its upfront presentation to advertisers in May. In one scene, a dandily attired Malone (above) walks into a blue-collar Pennsylvania bar and asks if anyone wants to join his choir.
The surprising answer: Yes.
The network is also developing "Bride or Best Man" (a working title) from Shed Media and "Romancing the Glove" from Mark Burnett and his One Three Media.