Medellin’s fourth “X Factor – Street Edition,” a singing competition for the city’s homeless population that was inspired by the world famous reality TV show, kicks off today in homeless shelters around the city.
The event aims to give Medellin’s large homeless population the chance to showcase their talents to the rest of the city, and help them rejoin society, Juan Pablo Lopez, the press secretary for Medellin’s Social Welfare Agency, told Colombia Reports on Friday.
The event will be completely focused on the homeless population, from the competitors singing on stage, to the staff who run the show, in addition to the spectators.
“The performances,” Lopez explained, “are generally very spontaneous, and participants sometimes use recorded musical backgrounds.”
The competition will be judged by professional musicians, and the winner will be awarded a small financial prize of “symbolic value,” because, according to Lopez, “The aim is more to offer them self-confidence through acknowledgement of their talent.”
The competitors who truly shine during the event, which will run for one week, will be offered the chance to record a CD. However, unlike Simon Cowell’s X-Factor show, no official commercial plans have been made for the winners of Medellin’s “X-Factor – Street Edition.”
According to Lopez, they have more humble hopes, and are still trying to work on getting the competition covered by local TV stations.
The competition is part of the city’s larger effort to reintegrate the city’s homeless population into society, Lopez explained.