Friday, March 29, 2013

MuchMusic VJ Search Host Lauren Toyota talks about the show on the road

The Much VJ Search is underway. The online audition process is over and the finalist have been chosen. The top 20 contestants are traveling across Canada participating in various competitions and getting sent home along the way. So far they have stopped in Vancouver and Banff and will be touching down in Calgary today.

I was able to talk with the show's host, Lauren Toyota, who is traveling with the group.

This is a unique experience for her as the previous VJ searches have not been traveling shows. In the past the contestants have come to Toronto to compete for the spot on the MuchMusic staff. This is the most intense search that they have ever done, "We have never gone to the extent to travel across the country on a bus." said Lauren.

Some hosts would rather be in a studio and go home in the evening, but Toyota was very excited to get involved with the show in the traveling capacity.

"I wanted to challenge myself with hosting a reality show, which I have never done and I’ve always wanted to do because I love reality TV," said Toyota, "When they were talking in the early stages of doing a VJ search in my own goal setting I was like, “I want to host this VJ search.” I did make it known to the people that I worked with, but obviously the decision was being made by my bosses. I kind of put it out into the universe and I got my wish."

Toyota got her wish of being the host of the show, but who will be the one to win the competition?

Lauren said that she has a favourite that she already sees herself working with, but she doesn't think she will ever be able to reveal their name. The structure of the show, the judging and the competitions are top secret until the show's premiere on Monday, but from what gather my conversation with Lauren I think that the contestants are a fun group that have been entertaining her on the road.

"Everyday we arrive in a new city and they don’t know what the challenge is, they really don’t know anything. That all has to be top secret," said Toyota, "They’re having fun and you can see the little cliques forming and the relationships and the alliances forming and I mean, they are so high energy, all of them. I think they know this is a reality show, the cameras are rolling all the time and they are really putting it on. I am having such a great time watching it all."

Observing seems to be Toyota's favourite past time on the tour as her interaction with the contestants needs to stay at a minimum. "I sort of sit in the back of the bus kind of quietly observing. It’s in my best interest to not really hang out with them and talk to them a lot because they obviously want to know everything and they are asking me too many questions already. So I have to brush them off. I can’t really be giving them any advice or tips or clues as to what might be happening," said Toyota.

Everything about the show from the contestants to the competitions is under wraps until the show's premiere on Monday, so I wasn't able to get a lot of details, but from what I hear it sounds like it is going to be a pretty interesting group.

Stops will be made in Vancouver, Banff, Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, Ottawa and Toronto.

The series premieres Monday April 1, 2013 at 6 PM EST/3 PM PST on MuchMusic during NML.


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