New Zealand guitarist and promoter Gray Bartlett is
questioning how New Zealand's Got Talent
can claim to
showcase the country's top talent when it has excluded an
artist who could have potentially won the show.
Dunedin singer Kylie Price last week withdrew from the
Television New Zealand talent search programme after refusing
to sign an exclusive contract required of semifinalists.
Mr Bartlett, who met Ms Price during the TVNZ "Find a Star"
competition which she won last year, said he had read the
contract she had been asked to sign and believed it was
"ridiculous", although she had made the decision to withdraw
on her own.
"Many thought she'd win it hands down.
"Those last few notes [of her NZGT performance] ...
she nailed it."
A TVNZ spokeswoman said last week the contract all
semifinalists were asked to sign involved a Sony management
deal and other recording agreements that were potentially
part of the NZGT prize package which was a universal
part of the show's format here and internationally.
Mr Bartlett, who described his relationship with Ms Price as
that of mentor, said controlling semifinalists for months
after the television show was not fair on the artists.
Ms Price was booked to appear as a special guest at the
Hollies performance at the Forsyth Barr Stadium in February.
"That is an important step for a young girl's future and she
felt she would not be able to do these things."
The show's organisers could not guarantee a tour of
NZGT would take place and he doubted it would as
New Zealand Idol tours had struggled to make a profit,
Mr Bartlett said.
Other than confirming her withdrawal from the show, Ms Price
had not spoken about her decision, due to an earlier contract
she signed requesting participants not talk to the media
until 30 days after the final programme aired.