Jan 22, 2013
"Jewish Star" Replaces 3 Judges
EXCLUSIVE: Avraham Fried, Eli Gerstner and Mendy Pellin will not be on Season 4 of A Jewish Star singing competition, COLlive has learned. Guess who is replacing them.
By COLlive reporter
An all new format of A Jewish Star will have 3 veteran judges of the international singing talent competition replaced in Season Four which will be launching this week.
Singer Avraham Fried and entertainer Mendy Pellin who have been with the contest since its novel inception in 2009, will not be evaluating contestants this round.
Another two familiar faces leaving are composer and conductor Eli Gerstner, who was a judge, and entertainer Country Yossi, who hosted Season Three's live finals show in Brooklyn College last year.
"Unfortunately this year due to previous commitments I'm not going to be a judge," Gerstner wrote on his Facebook page.
Having composed and produced the song "Nisbia" for Season 3 winner Choni Goldman, he added that he was "looking forward to working on the next song with the winner of A Jewish Star 2013."
As part of the major changes planned in Season Four, COLlive has learned that producers of the competition are aiming to broaden its audience and to give a larger segment of the Jewish community a shot at stardom.
Yossi Soffer, Executive Producer of A Jewish Star, said the new slate of judges will be 5 known names in the Jewish music world, each representing another niche market.
One of them is legendary composer Yossi Green who also judged last year's contest.
The most significant change in the new season will be its format, which will resemble a full fledged reality show with ongoing episodes being released online.
Soffer said the show's episodes, produced by filmmaker Danny Finkelman of Sparks Next, will document the live auditions, elimination process and the contestants being narrowed down to a few finalists, taking a closer look at their personalities and musical aspirations.
"We experimented with the episodes idea last season, which became wildly popular with viewers," said Soffer. "Now we are going all out, which we hope will gain an even larger, and enthusiastic following," Soffer said.
He said the new judges needed to meet the requirements of continuous filming on location in the New York area. "We are very excited about the caliber of talent we chose as judges," he noted.
The names of the new judges will be announced Wednesday on the competition's social page Facebook.com/JewishStar.
Until then, all Soffer agreed to reveal was that one of them is a major name, another is pop star in Israel, a third is part of a dynasty that released hit albums and a fourth is a member of a popular band.