‘Rising Star’ Debut Earns Second-Place Ratings

rising starABC’s new singing competition Rising Star debuted with a 1.5 adults 18-49 rating, averaging 5 million viewers, according to Nielsen’s preliminary ratings on Zap2it.com.

Brad Paisley, Kesha and Ludacris make up the panel of experts on the show, where their votes are added to real-time votes from at-home viewers as the contestants attempt to “raise the wall.” The show, hosted by Josh Groban, airs live so that voting can be conducted in real-time via app. If the contestant scores enough points, the video wall between them and the experts is raised and they move on to the next level.

According to Variety, NBC planned a special edition of America’s Got Talent opposite the premiere of Rising Star to intercept the new show’s viewers. Talent won the 9 PM ET hour for NBC.

Country singer Sarah Darling was among the first round of contestants and received enough votes to return to the competition (see video below). Teenage boy band Beyond 5, who recently moved to Music City, also competed but did not receive enough votes to continue on the show.

In recent months, talent competitions have saturated TV line ups. Fox cancelled The X Factor, and American Idol had its lowest-rated year ever. NBC’s popular series, The Voice, also experienced a ratings slip.

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Sarah Skates has worked in the music business for more than a decade and is a longtime contributor to MusicRow.

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