With the holidays quickly approaching, season three of NBC's The Sing-Off is rapidly (and musically) coming to a close. After an impressive two seasons, ran only during the past two Decembers, ratings allowed for enough steam to expand the season into 11 episodes. On November 21, the remaining four groups, Pentatonix, Urban Method, Darthmouth Aires, and Afro Blue, took to the stage performing mashups and a judge's choice number. For the first time this season, voting opened up (and continues through this week) to the viewing public, which gives America the chance to crown the new champions.
In a conference call November 21, host Nick Lachey, judge and singer/songwriter Sara Bareilles, and executive producer Joel Gallen discussed favorite themed weeks, former judge Nicole Scherzinger, show duties, and what to expect from possible collaborations.
With the expanded 11 show schedule, Gallen is able to explore a myriad of musical genres, including two favorites, "Guilty Pleasure" and a double challenge of Rock and Country. "The most fun one, of course, was the 'Guilty Pleasure' one, and I think the most challenging one was the double challenge we did [of] Rock and Country," he revealed.
This double challenge allowed most groups to stretch the boundaries of their respective vocal arrangements. Although the two genres were out of the wheel house of most groups, they "really delivered" interesting and complex performances. Lachey, much like Gallen, applauded the Country performances, but also noted that hip-hop week was a highlight of the show.
As far as "wow" moments on the show, Gallen listed numerous magical stage moments that had him star struck, including Pentatonix's "Love Lockdown" and "Let's Get It On," Delilah's "Grenade," and Urban Method's "I Love the Way You Lie." Those performances, he gushed, were some of "the best we've ever seen." Lachey, on the other hand, discussed his gratitude with not having to be on the tough decision-making end of the deal, saying that the talent was so phenomenal this season that the competition was "so close to call." Undoubtedly, in its third season, The Sing-Off continues to nuture a comeback niche.
When asked what he plans to have accomplished with this season, Gallen hopes that he has left "some type of impression on the audience." Because a cappella singing is such a specific type of performance, Gallen feels that "we've proven ourselves as far as a viable music series." With more music and more groups, the show has been able to chart new territory never explored before on a reality TV singing competition. The most satisfying aspect of the show? "For me, [it] would be is if whoever our champion is could actually have some success and find an audience and sell some records." Also, he notes his desire for the winning group to cultivate a fan base that will go to concerts and still listen to their music after the show. That is always the toughest part of shows like this.