SUM Entertainment launches third nationwide search for China’s next pop star

April 13, 2006 – China’s hottest ethnic-pop artist and top international music industry guests arrived in Shanghai to celebrate the launch of the “Sprite My Show 2006” talent quest.

Phenomenal Chinese musical enigma Dao Lang, Vivendi Universal’s Chief Executive Officer Jean-Bernard Levy, Universal Music Group CFO Nick Henny, Universal Music Group International’s (UMGI) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Lucian Grainge, and President of Universal Music Asia Pacific Max Hole made a surprise guest appearance at the “Sprite My Show 2006” press conference and artist showcase in the People’s Square in Nanjing Road. Dao Lang officially joined the Universal Music Group international artist roster last month and is the label’s number one artist from China.

“Sprite My Show 2006” aims to find China’s next top pop star and will forge ahead SUM Entertainment’s mission to be the number one next-generation music and entertainment company that connects China to the world. Past winners Jason Zhang Jie (2004) and Liu Wei (2005) are proven successes of the “WXWS” concept, having gone on to release top-selling albums and win a string of prestigious awards around the region.

Broadcast every Saturday night during prime time on Dragon TV, the satellite TV station under SMG, the 18-episode weekly reality-TV/talent-quest show begins with city-by-city auditions across China. Potential talents and wannabe stars will audition in 22 cities, including: Beijing, Changsha, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Qingdao, Shanghai, Shenyang, Tianjin and Xi’an.

A group total of 100 contestants will be selected to attend a 10-week training camp in Shanghai, where they will be groomed and trained in singing, dancing and acting. They will also receive invaluable first-hand tips by Universal Music’s hottest pop stars from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Special-guest judges will eliminate entrants down to the final six, who will compete in the competition finale that will be broadcast live on Dragon TV in end-September 2006.

The winner, selected by both an esteemed judging panel and the TV audience via interactive SMS voting, will be signed to SUM Entertainment. SUM will invest 1 million renminbi in the development and promotion of their newfound career. To date, SUM’s artist roster includes two past winners and nine finalists from the first two seasons of “WXWS.”

Harry Hui, President of Universal Music South East Asia, said: “The incredible success we’ve had with the first-ever winner, Jason Zhang Jie, and season two’s winner, Liu Wei, and their amazing list of esteemed accolades and awards in China and regionally prove that SUM’s vision is coming to fruition. China is definitely a source of new talent in the region as well as an untapped creative entity. I am excited to see who we’ll find in season three.”