“PROJECT ALOFT STAR, AMPLIFIED BY MTV” REVEALS WINNERS IN FOURTH EDITION OF THE MUSIC TALENT DISCOVERY COMPETITION

Highest response with over 1500 original song entries and more than 1.2M votes cast

09 NOVEMBER 2017, SINGAPORE
Summary
Cutting-edge Aloft® brand and global youth entertainment brand MTV today revealed the winners of the fourth annual Asia Pacific edition of music talent discovery competition Project Aloft Star, Amplified by MTV. They are Mr.HeadBox for Southeast Asia & Australia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Australia), Ego Function Error for South Korea and Chick en Chicks for Greater China (China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan). Identifying and supporting the hottest emerging music acts, this was the most successful year in the history of the competition, with over 1500 original song entries published, and more than 1.2M online votes cast. These figures represent an increase of 3x the number of submissions, and double the votes from 2016.

SINGAPORE, 9 NOVEMBER 2017 - Cutting-edge Aloft® brand and global youth entertainment brand MTV today revealed the winners of the fourth annual Asia Pacific edition of music talent discovery competition Project Aloft Star, Amplified by MTV. They are Mr.HeadBox for Southeast Asia & Australia (Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, and Australia), Ego Function Error for South Korea and Chick en Chicks for Greater China (China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan). Identifying and supporting the hottest emerging music acts, this was the most successful year in the history of the competition, with over 1500 original song entries published, and more than 1.2M online votes cast. These figures represent an increase of 3x the number of submissions, and double the votes from 2016.

The four finalists in each cluster performed at the finals held at the newest Aloft Hotels in the Asia Pacific: Aloft Perth (20 October) for the Southeast Asia & Australia leg, Aloft Seoul Myeongdong (26 October) for South Korea, and Aloft Dongguan Dynamic Town (3 November) for Greater China.

In front of a live audience and a panel of judges from Aloft, MTV, and music industry experts, they evaluated on showmanship and stage presence, technical skill, a “WOW” factor, creativity and originality, international appeal, and songwriting and music composition. Past Project Aloft Star winners also lent their star power by performing at this year’s finals. At the South Korea finals, 2016 winner Brown Whale was the special guest performer, while most recently at the Greater China finals, 2014 China champion PandaBros performed to much fanfare too.

Each cluster winner walked away with US$10,000 cash prize to kickstart their music career, a mentorship from MTV and Believe Distribution Services Deal, and a Believe Distribution Services deal for marketing and distribution. In addition, their winning performance and individual winner vignette will be featured on the competition website projectaloftstar.mtvasia.com.

Mike Fulkerson, Vice President, Brand & Marketing, Asia Pacific, commented: “Aloft is a trailblazer in the industry that celebrates individuality and opens possibilities through technology, design and music. And Project Aloft Star, Amplified by MTV is a competition that captures the essence of the brand’s belief in self-expression through music. We are heartened to see fresh emerging talent in the fourth edition of the competition this year, which is undoubtedly bigger and bolder with the addition of Australia and Indonesia. We are committed to cutting-edge music programming, leading the way as a brand that stands out with an abundance of opportunities and a space that is open to support creativity.”

“With chapters in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America, Project: Aloft Star is a truly global platform for catapulting up-and-coming talent into the industry, and showcasing global sounds to music-lovers,” said Bridget Higgins, Senior Global Brand Director, Aloft Hotels. “The popularity of the contest continues to grow, and with a record breaking number of entrants this year in Asia Pacific, our winners should be prouder than ever.”

“As the cultural home of the millennial generation, MTV is proud to partner Aloft in our support of emerging artistes in the region. The results this year are phenomenal, and highlight the sheer amount of fresh talent out there and the public enthusiasm for good music. This competition has cast a spotlight on passionate young performers and we hope that it inspires them to keep creating new tunes,” said Paras Sharma, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Southeast Asia, Viacom International Media Networks.

WINNERS’ QUOTES

Mr.HeadBox (Southeast Asia & Australia)

I’m feeling so happy! This was so unexpected and we never thought we would have won. How I feel now is beyond words. I want to say thank you to Aloft Hotels and MTV Asia. I am so grateful to be here. Everything about this journey has been amazing!” said Mr.HeadBox.

Hear the original entry submission “YOUNG” HERE.

Ego Function Error (South Korea)

“It was a truly amazing experience where we could just be ourselves and that’s why we didn’t expect to be the final winner. But then again, if I think back, I think that’s how we could end up being the final winner because we were just being ourselves, enjoying what we do. We couldn’t be more grateful to MTV & Aloft for giving us such an opportunity and we’re still in shock and cannot believe this has happened to us”, said Ego Function Error.

Hear the original entry submission “I Don’t Give A Damn” HERE.

Chick en Chicks (Greater China)

“It is a great honour to be the final winner for Greater China here today! Thank you to the judges’ recognition and support from fans. And we are also very grateful for this international platform provided by Aloft Hotels and MTV. We’ll continue efforts on creating original music.”

Hear the original entry submission “Go Away” HERE.

For a recap on the finalists’ submissions, please visit: projectaloftstar.mtvasia.com


NOTES TO EDITORS

WINNERS’ PROFILES

Mr. HeadBox (Southeast Asia & Australia)

Mr. Headbox is an independent singer who gained attention on social media in Indonesia this year. In 2016, he covered some songs and uploaded them on Instagram and YouTube. On 28 May 2017, he uploaded his first original music video titled ‘YOUNG’, which attracted netizens in Indonesia. The song became viral and his name is increasingly known in Indonesia. The song "YOUNG" has taken him to several famous TV stations in Indonesia as a guest star.

Ego Function Error (South Korea)

Ego Function Error is a psychedelic punk rock band. They stand up for the wrong in society like sexual discrimination or stereotypes. But instead of punk rock's typical three-chord play, they chose the psychedelic way to spread their word. Gaining various musical references over time, their music will include elements from other genres. They are trying to light up the bottom of people's hearts with their music.

Chick en Chicks (Greater China)

Chick en Chicks is an electro duo band formed in 2015 by Kartina and Mr.G. Mr.G is a guitarist from Taiwan and Kartina is a vocalist from England. Sharing the same love and passion for electro music, d they formed CNCS. Their music genre consists a great mix of different electro music styles. During songwriting sessions, samples from daily life are recorded, used and combined into their music (e.g. toothbrush) along with Kartina's deep but powerful, emotional vocals, which adds a special vibe to CNCS' style of music.

LIST OF JUDGES AT FINALS

Southeast Asia + Australia

  • Stephen Morahan, General Manager, Aloft Perth
  • Simon Bates, Vice President and Head, MTV Asia Pacific
  • Syaheed MSBI, Head of Trade Marketing, APAC, Believe Distribution Services
  • Clara Iaccarino, Director, MAKEbeLIVE Productions and Whirlwind Entertainment
  • Toto Widjojo, Managing Director, Warner Music Indonesia

South Korea

  • Jason Kim, General Manager, Aloft Seoul Myeongdong
  • Adam Cho, Artist Marketing and Label Relations Manager, MTV Asia
  • Syaheed MSBI, Head of Trade Marketing, APAC, Believe Distribution Services
  • Harrison Hong, A & R Manager, Universal Music Korea
  • Tommy Jinho Yoon, International Director, Pentaport Rock Festival

Greater China

  • Allen Tan, Director of Sales, Aloft Dongguan Dynamic Town
  • Wing Tsu, Creative and Content Director, MTV China
  • Mark Knopfler, Founder, Musikid
  • Orbis Fu, CEO, The Wall Music
  • Mr. Shanqi, Planner, Musician, Producer, Director

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About Aloft Hotels

With more than 125 hotels now open in nearly 20 countries and territories around the world, Aloft Hotels, part of Marriott International, Inc., delivers a fresh approach to the traditional staid hotel landscape. For the ‘always on’ next generation of traveller, the Aloft brand offers a tech-forward, vibrant experience and a modern style that is different by design. Aloft is proud to participate in the industry’s award-winning loyalty program, Starwood Preferred Guest®. Members can now link accounts with Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards® at members.marriott.com for instant elite status matching and unlimited points transfer. For more information, please visit http://www.alofthotels.com/ and follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of more than 6,100 properties in 30 leading hotel brands spanning 124 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company also operates award-winning loyalty programs: Marriott Rewards®, which includes The Ritz-Carlton Rewards®, and Starwood Preferred Guest®. For more information, please visit our website at www.marriott.com, and for the latest company news, visit www.marriottnewscenter.com In addition, connect with us on Facebook and @MarriottIntl on Twitter and Instagram.

About MTV

MTV is the world’s biggest youth entertainment brand. With a global reach of nearly 785 million households, MTV is the cultural home of the millennial generation, music fans and artists, and a pioneer in creating innovative programming for young people. MTV reflects and creates pop culture with its award-winning content built around compelling storytelling, music discovery and activism across TV, online and mobile. Outside of the United States, MTV is part of Viacom International Media Networks, a division of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), one of the world’s leading creators of programming and content across all platforms. For more information about MTV in Asia, visit www.mtvasia.com.

About Believe Distribution Services

Believe offers smart distribution and marketing services for artists & labels worldwide. The company has over 400 employees globally with 32 offices around the world.

Believe empowers artists and labels to maximize the value of their music in the transitioning digital music space by providing them with a full suite of services: digital music and video distribution, digital marketing and promotion services, synchronization and neighbouring rights management, full label services including international physical distribution and campaign management, as well as an in-house record label AllPoints, and DIY distribution platform TuneCore. The company prides itself on providing personal tailor made services for each label and artist.

Championing innovation and transparency throughout its ten-year history, Believe has developed leading in-house technology as well as a range of analytical and promotional tools to help labels & artists leverage the benefits of digital.

For additional information, please visit http://www.believemusic.com/

MEDIA CONTACTS

Beverly Cheng

Senior Brand PR Manager, Asia Pacific, Marriott International

E: Beverly.cheng@marriott.com M: +852 9540-0305

Alethea Lam

Vice President, Communications, Asia Pacific, Marriott International

E: Alethea.lam@marriott.com

Yvette Yeo

Senior Manager, Communications, Southeast Asia

Viacom International Media Networks

E: Yvette.yeo@vimn.com M: +65 9007 9570

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    Yvette Yeo

    Senior Manager, Communications, Viacom International Media Networks Asia
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    Sheila Lim

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    International Media Networks Asia
    e: sheila.lim@vimnmix.com
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About VIMN Asia Press

Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN), a unit of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), is comprised of many of the world’s most popular multimedia entertainment brands, including MTV, MTV LIVE HD, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Comedy Central, Paramount Channel, and more. Viacom brands reach more than 3.4 billion cumulative subscribers in 180+ countries and territories via more than 200 locally programmed and operated TV channels and more than 550 digital media and mobile TV properties, in 40 languages. Keep up with VIMN news by visiting the VIMN PR Twitter feed at www.twitter.com/VIMN_PR. For more information about Viacom and its businesses, visit www.viacom.com, blog.viacom.com and the Viacom Twitter feed at www.twitter.com/Viacom.

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