Karaoke Television

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Karaoke Television (KTV)
Created byStewart Krohn
Directed byRick Romero
StarringWilliam Neal
Country of originBLZ
No. of episodes83
Executive producer(s)Stewart Krohn Producer = Mary Rhaburn
Running time60 minutes (variable with each episode)
Original networkChannel 5
Original releaseFebruary 20, 2001 (2001-02-20) –
October 30, 2007 (2007-10-30)
External links

Karaoke Television, usually called KTV for short, was a live-action music competition airing on Great Belize Television (Channel 5). It premiered in February 2001 and completed six seasons as of October 30, 2007.[1]

Origins and format

KTV, according to host William Neal, originated from a karaoke competition hosted by Channel 5 the previous year during its annual "Gimme 5" Christmas special. Neal claimed the show was not looking as much for real singing talent as for stage performance- giving a good performance for the audience.[2] Auditions for the first season were held for most of February, primarily at Channel 5's Belize City office.

The first show aired on February 20, 2001, from the Bellevue Hotel on Southern Foreshore. Six contestants (trimmed to five in later seasons) appeared and sang a selection played by the karaoke director (originally Richard Villanueva, later replaced by a team featuring former champion Louis Maskall). The best performer was selected by a group of judges and advanced to the semifinal round; in all ten semifinalists were selected. In the semi-finals, the contestants again sang a song of their own choosing and the top two advanced to the final round. In the final, each contestant sings two songs and composite scores are totaled for a grand champion. In the 2005 and 2006 seasons the semi-final round included a "lightning round" in which the contestants selected a song they had not rehearsed and sang a portion of it to the judges. Small prizes were regularly donated and awarded to all participants; typically, the weekly winner received souvenirs and a cash prize from Channel 5. The grand prizes have changed from season to season; a karaoke machine was awarded in 2005, while in 2006 the main prize was a bedroom set.

Hosting Duties

After Neal left the country on sabbatical in 2003, veteran broadcaster Neil Hall took over for one season. A children's edition of KTV aired later in 2003, hosted by Maureen Dawson, and it took the 2004 season off. KTV resumed in 2005 with Neal as host from a different venue, the Bliss Center for Performing Arts Palm Court (home of the Institute of Creative Arts, successor to the Belize Arts Council). For Ultimate KTV, the Bliss Center's Auditorium was used, seating over 600.

Judging categories

The contestants were judged on three categories: Performance (worth 40 points), voice quality (40) and clarity of lyrics (20), for a total 100. The lightning round performances in later seasons were judged out of ten. While points were not awarded for props and style, attire and stage presence have proven somewhat important in the judging of KTV.

Season 6: Ultimate KTV

For the sixth season of KTV, producers announced a number of changes in format, in keeping with a "Tournament of Champions" format. For the first time, the show will have three permanent judges critiquing singers, but not voting for them, instead of rotating ones as in previous seasons. Viewers for the first time had the chance to select their favorite singers to advance through a text messaging system, operated by Belize Telemedia, open immediately before the show up until the Sunday prior to the next show at midnight AM (for instance, if the show airs on July 10 at 9 PM CST, text lines will be open from then up to Sunday, July 15 at 11:59 PM CST). In week 6 of the competition, trouble with sponsor Telemedia's system extended voting to 12:00 PM CST on the day of the competition.Sept. 24 report

Past finalists and champions (a total of 17, see below) joined what became fourteen other selections garnered from two country wide auditions held at the Bliss. The first prize was $10,000 (Belize dollars) cash, though other prizes were awarded. The show continued on Tuesday nights, with William Neal as host, and returned to Sunday night in-season replays.[3]

The first two shows of season six, aired on July 10 and 17, were prerecorded highlights of the auditions held on June 30 and July 7 respectively, and judged by Jennifer Lovell. The first live show of the final season aired on July 24, 2007, in which thirteen contestants were selected from a final field of 20.[4] Due to cancellations by past contestants, several new faces have been called back to compete in addition to the established field; the episode for September 25 presented just three contestants.

Permanent judges

The three judges selected to preside for the duration of the sixth season are:

Weekly winners of Karaoke Television

Season 1 (2001)

Bellvue Hotel, Southern Foreshore, Belize City.

Season 2 (2002)

Club Calypso (Princess Hotel), Newtown Barracks, Belize City.

Season 3 (2003)

Club Calypso (Princess Hotel), Newtown Barracks, Belize City

Season 4 (2005)

Bliss Center for the Performing Arts Palm Court, Belize City.

Season 5 (2006)

Bliss Center Palm Court, Belize City.

Season 6 (Ultimate KTV, 2007)

Bliss Center Auditorium, Belize City. Note: Winners announced the following week.

Kids KTV

Note: Aired in October and November 2003, Club Calypso at Princess Hotel, Belize City.

Championship 16/11:[16] Donna Neal (juniors), Tracy Gomez (seniors)

Champions of KTV by season


DVD release

During the Christmas season of 2007, Channel 5 announced the first DVD release of any KTV season with the release of "The Best of Ultimate KTV",the season 6 DVD. A special airing was screened on Christmas Day. The DVD runs approximately two hours and sells for $40 BZ.


KTV finished its run with the grand finale on October 30, 2007, but Channel 5 has greenlighted a similarly themed program, Duets, to take its place in the 2008 summer season.


A number of former KTV contestants are plying their trade in the local entertainment industry. Pollard, Fabro, Maskall, Tremett Perriott and others are frequently called on for singing engagements, but no CD's have yet been released from any participant.


  1. ^ "Channel 5 preview". Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2007-06-20.
  2. ^ ""Channel 5's new show looking for talent"". Archived from the original on 2007-09-29. Retrieved 2006-10-10.
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  14. ^ Channel5Belize.COM[permanent dead link]
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  16. ^ Channel 5 November 17, 2003[permanent dead link]
  17. ^ "Channel 5, March 14, 2001". Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved July 11, 2007.
  18. ^ Channel5Belize.COM[permanent dead link]