As far as TV singing competitions are concerned, I was first exposed years ago to "American Idol" and became a regular viewer. I was drawn to the singers and their auditions then their competition with each other since I experienced auditions and competing against other actors for roles in film and TV shows as well as plays and musicals.
The reality shows about singing competitions are a much more polished and professional version of the much less glamorous and gritty live auditions I went through years ago to try for acting parts.
"The Voice" on NBC has quickly become very popular in competition with "American Idol," "The X-Factor" and "America's Got Talent." (I've never gotten into "America's Got Talent" because it isn't primarily a singing competition. Herman says it reminds him of the old "Ted Mack Amateur Hour" from decades ago, whatever that was.)
"The Voice" has singing professionals who only hear the voice of the competitor and must choose those they want for their teams of 16 blindly before hitting a button and turning to see what their choice looks like.
When I was auditioning for parts, it was a matter of all aspects including personal charisma, appearance, voice quality and energy.
I like that the contestants on "The Voice" are newcomers who have great talent, not just anyone who stood in line like many on "American Idol" and "America's Got Talent."
I'm intrigued by the process of the competition on the show that includes individual performances as well as team competition. I also like that those who make it to the final stages of competition aren't just at the mercy of anyone who feels like texting in votes multiple times but are chosen with input from the judges as well, on a point scale.
You could say he judges represent much of the current music scene, with country, rock, hip-hop and rap all in the judges' repertoires.
With three shows last Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday's direct competition with "The X-Factor," it will be interesting to see which show America likes more in the ratings. My vote is split since I like them both.
Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career in New York City and Los Angeles, now writes from Caroga Lake in Fulton County. Her previous columns and contact information can be accessed at her website, www.kathrynskorner.com.