(NBC) — The Grand Final of NBC’s “American Song Contest” is Monday, with 10 acts vying for the title of Best Original Song in the show’s first season.
Performers are still in the chase, starting with Connecticut’s Michael Bolton, the most seasoned of the finalists on Monday’s “American Song Contest” but he’s energized by watching his younger competition.
“It’s hard to describe the looks on their faces, the sweet, innocent aspiration,” said Bolton.
That includes Tenelle who is representing American Samoa.
“To be a territory and be in the top 10 is the most overwhelming feeling, ya know?” said Tenelle.
It’s a similar sentiment for Dani Brillhart and Colton Jones the Alabama duo known as Ni/Co.
“It still feels like a dream, like a blur,” said Jones.
“It feels like it’s not real,” agreed Brillhart.
“It’ll feel real once I can watch it back later,” Jones added.
Jones, who graduated from Kettering Fairmont High School in Ohio, had some previous singing competition experience on NBC with an appearance on Season 2 of “The Sing-Off” in 2010.
But here and now Oklahoma’s AleXa is about tweaking for the Grand Final.
“What more can we add to make it even more showstopping?” said AleXa.
Kentucky’s Jordan Smith has even more questions.
“What do I have left to give?” said Smith. “What new inspiration can I find for this song? What new level of energy can I bring to it?”
Energy’s no problem for Colorado’s Riker Lynch rescued by America’s Vote.
“I’m just grateful to be here,” said Lynch. “I cannot wait to get back out on the stage.”
That’s where Tennessee’s Tyler Braden hopes the basics will rule.
“You can look the part, you can put on these amazing shows, but what stands the test of time is the song itself,” said Braden.
And for Washington’s Allen Stone the competition takes a back seat to the tunes.
“Everybody who’s here and is getting to share their music and their art is rooting for each other,” said Stone.
And viewer support’s crossed state lines for Texan Grant Knoche.
“It’s so cool to be like, someone in Michigan who says, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m rooting for you in Texas,’” said Knoche.
And in Hollywood, North Dakota’s Chloe Fredericks knows she’s on the brink.
“This is where I dreamed about being when I was a kid, so it’s nuts to be here living it,” said Fredericks.
“American Song Contest” airs Monday at 7 p.m., followed by a special episode of “New Amsterdam” at 9.
And voting is open before the Grand Final starts and viewers can vote right up until the closing minutes of the show.
“American Song Contest” voting
Fans at home can vote for their favorite performances on nbc.com/ascvote, the NBC App and on TikTok. Voting for the Qualifiers will open Mondays during the show and will close Wednesday morning at 7 am ET.
- The competition will be comprised of three rounds, taking place over eight weeks. The Qualifying Rounds will have 11 acts in each episode (with one week featuring 12). Twenty-two artists will perform in the two-part Semi-Finals with the Top 10 performing in the Grand Final, where a winner will be crowned.
- In the five-week Qualifiers (March 21, 28, April 4, 11, 18) at the end of each night, the jury will advance one artist immediately to the Semi-Finals. The remaining three spots will be determined through a combination of jury and fan votes. The artists advancing to the Semi-Finals will be announced the following week.
- In the Semi-Finals (April 25 & May 2), 10 artists will perform each week, with a slightly elevated performance of their original song.
- To make the stakes even higher, in each Semi-Final a “redemption” song will be revealed, adding an 11th artist back into the competition to perform that week for the chance to advance to the Grand Final.
- At the end of each Semi-Final, the jury awards their highest-rated artist with an immediate spot in the Grand Final. America’s votes will then help to decide along with the jury which four additional artists will advance.
- In the Grand Final (May 9), the top 10 artists take the stage one last time to win America’s and the jury’s vote for best hit song.