Why Isn’t There a U.S. Version of ‘The Voice Kids’?

Samantha Agate
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The Voice Kids Germany

Talent competition shows have long been a staple of American television and a constant ratings boost to each weeknight television lineup. The Voice Kids is one talent competition that has yet to make an appearance on NBC. Regular seasons of The Voice have brought in millions of viewers each season, raising questions about why this global spinoff has not yet landed on the network.

Speculation for ‘The Voice Kids’ on NBC Continues to Grow

In the past, there was a very obvious answer as to why The Voice Kids never came to NBC. The Voice aired two seasons per year, leaving little room in the lineup for a spinoff show. The show has since moved to one cycle per year. This would be the opportune time for NBC to shock us all and bring the spinoff to the network.

La Voz Kids did air on Telemundo for four seasons beginning in 2013. The American Spanish-language network show brought in big names in the music industry like Prince Royce and Daddy Yankee as coaches. Children ages 7 to 15 years old competed for a cash prize and a recording contract. Amanda Mena, Mel B’s America’s Got Talent Golden Buzzer, actually won La Voz Kids in 2014. The Season 2 finale racked in 2.6 million viewers.

Telemundo is owned by NBCUniversal, the same media conglomerate that produces The Voice. NBC could potentially feel like La Voz Kids on Telemundo did not bring in big enough numbers to shift the program to NBC. It is possible that they feel like The Voice Kids wouldn’t do well in a coveted timeslot in their lineup. Regular seasons of The Voice on NBC usually have at least 5 million viewers per episode.

‘The Voice’ and Other Talent Shows All Have Their Own Age Requirements

Most global versions of The Voice Kids feature contestants who are 7 to 14 years old. Some contestants are 6 years old when they sign up to audition, but must turn 7 years old by a specific date. On The Voice, all contestants must be 13 or older to audition. Contestants under the age of 18 on any talent show are typically required to have a parent or guardian over the age of 18 present.

American Idol changed its age limit in recent seasons. All contestants must be at least 15 years old to audition. In the earlier seasons, the age limit was 16. The change in age limit is likely due to the fact that so many young stars emerged in the entertainment world during this time. Most talent competition shows are looking for the next Justin Bieber. So far, a 15-year-old has never won American Idol.

American Idol did launch a spinoff for younger contestants called American Juniors in 2013. It only lasted for one season. The show brought in around 11.7 million viewers for its premiere. Despite the great premiere ratings, the appeal of the show fizzled out. It remains to be seen if the same thing would happen with The Voice Kids.

Brynn Cartelli was the first 15 year old to win The Voice in Season 14. Five teenagers have won the show since it first aired in 2011. It is clear that America loves watching young artists find their strides on The Voice. Would they respond the same way watching even younger singers battle it out on The Voice Kids?

Would Kid Singers Abandon ‘AGT’ and Audition for a Rival NBC Show?

America’s Got Talent does not have an age limit. The show sees so many young talents bring home the $1 million prize or make it far in the competition. Would The Voice Kids be too redundant? It would potentially take some shine away from all of the kid singers that Simon Cowell discovers on AGT.

As quickly as NBC announced the spinoff AGT: Extreme, they could turn around and announce The Voice Kids. The network’s hesitancy to do this might be because it would take potential viewers away from AGT. All of the young singers looking to achieve Grace VanderWaal’s level of fame could choose to join The Voice Kids instead of AGT. The shows would have to air at opposite times of the year.

Global versions of The Voice Kids have seen some tiny kids with huge voices. Several kids that competed on global versions of The Voice Kids have later come onto AGT. This includes Daneliya Tuleshova, Courtney Hadwin, and Benicio Bryant. They all shared their dreams about becoming a star on American television. Clearly, global versions of The Voice Kids have a harder time at creating superstars than AGT has. NBC is the place to be for young artists hoping to make it big.

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