TAHOE - American Idol-style voting at an NPC bodybuilding event? It's new, it's innovative and it's being done at the 2012 Tahoe Show.
"We have judging and we have voting," said Chris Minnes, one of the promoters of the Tahoe Show.
Just like any other NPC show, there will be seven NPC judges evaluating all the competitors, but this year, the promoters have added an American Idol-style text messaging component to the show where the audience can choose their favorite athlete. It's a form of audience-interaction that has never been done before at a NPC show.
"Essentially, the top athletes will be picked by the NPC judges, and then the top three from each weight class will come out on stage. For example, in bodybuilding you have five weight classes, so you'll have 15 people on the stage to vote for. The audience will choose their favorite through text messaging voting," Minnes said.
The winner of the audience text messaging votes will qualify for what promoters Chris Minnes and Bill Cambraare calling the People's Choice Award. It's limited to the seven open divisions which means there will be a finalist in women's bodybuilding, figure, fitness, bikini , men's physique and women's physique. From there, with the help of Muscular Development Magazine, they are going to choose one male and one female athlete to be in the magazine.
"The idea behind the People's Choice Award is that our show is not a national qualifier. The reason some people want to compete in national qualifiers is to go to nationals, then go pro and be in a magazine. This will give you much better odds at being in a magazine," Minnes said.
The text voting will happen theevening of the show. Both those watching the show online or in the audience will have to chance to vote in real time. The winners will either be announced that night or the next morning as thepromoters areplanning to do a photoshoot on the beach the next morning with the winner.
"We know the audience is likely going vote slightly differently than the judges. The judges are looking purely at physique, where the audience will look at physique, charisma, personality, looks and if they are familiar to them. So there will be other factors going into it when they vote," Minnes said.
The history-making NPC show is taking place on August 25 at Mont Bleu and is expected to have over 200 athletes competing in various divisions.