Show of the Week: Master Class

Israel is fast becoming the hottest country in the world in terms of format creation and the latest hit Israeli show to come to international markets is Master Class, which was created by Keshet and Teddy Productions (Danny Hollywood and MICE).

A huge hit in Israel on Keshet, the broadcaster’s distribution arm Keshet International is bringing it to international markets.

“I think we have finally cracked a way of bringing kids into a talent show,” says Alon Shtruzman, Keshet International managing director. “Many parents think that there is something wrong with putting kids in these shows where they are competing with each other and acting as adults, but the beauty of Master Class is we have taken a talent show and introduced elements of a ‘school class’.”

According there are no celebrity ‘mentors’, but there are ‘teachers’ that help the kids prepare for their performances and there is ‘homework’, ‘grades’ and ‘challenges’.

The songs that the kids perform are chosen for their lyrics and meaning and the contestants encouraged to understand these and engage with the music. The songs themselves are popular tunes, but not necessarily chart-topping pop songs.

“Most importantly, no-one fails,” Shtruzman says. “The kids are either ‘good’ or ‘excellent’, you won’t see parents comforting crying kids in this show. There are no eliminations and no humiliation. The emphasis is on the singing, it’s very family friendly and kids and parents can watch together. It’s not as lavish as something like X Factor, it’s more chilled out.”

On Keshet the show averaged a 48% share and was the second-highest rated TV series in Israel last year. Keshet is pitching it as a primetime family show. In Israel the show was one-hour long with an extended final.

Season two will go out on Keshet next year.

The format was first shown to international buyers at MIPCOM and the ink is almost dry on the first deals.

Shtruzman says the show should work in all regions: “Music and kids work everywhere, broadcasters in Europe, the US and Asia will all get it.”


The show: Master Class
The producer: Teddy Productions, Keshet Broadcasting
The distributor: Keshet International
Airing: Keshet (Israel)
Concept: New twist on the talent show in which kids take part in a family-friendly singing competition