Mariah Carey adds music star power to TV's Upfronts |

Friday 20 May 2016

Mariah Carey adds music star power to TV's Upfronts

Upfront week in New York - the annual dog-and-pony show where TV networks and cable outlets pitch media buyers for the nearly $9 billion in advertising dollars up for grabs in the coming season - is traditionally a barrage of sizzle reels, sales spiels, skits, clips and cocktails aimed at making new programs and returning shows go down more easily.

But in recent years the networks have been relying more on music - and music stars - to help make their pitches. By rolling out Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez, Nicki Minaj, Bollywood superstar Priyanka Chopra (star of ABC's Quantico) and the singing casts of Broadway's Hamilton and Fox's Empire, the networks are looking to "connect culturally", according to Josh Rabinowitz, senior vp/director of music for ad agency Grey Group. "With all the competition outside the traditional networks, it's important for them to show they're in tune."

Decked out in a tiny sparkling bodysuit laced with dozens of peekaboo cut-outs, Carey played her image to the hilt while introducing her new E! docu-series, Mariah's World, during NBC Universal's presentation: She was carried to the Radio City Music Hall stage by bare-chested hunks while lying atop a plush purple chaise. "It was symbolic of what the show is about: voyeurism and extravagant behavior," said Mediahub svp Carrie Drinkwater. "It was perfect: a train-wreck you want to watch."

(excerpt from Billboard)

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