“Our story is a Cinderella story”
Bill and Tom Kaulitz are the new members of this years Jury at the casting show “Deutschland such den Superstar”, which will start airing on RTL on January 5th at 8.15 p.m. The twins got famous and known with their band “Tokio Hotel“, with which they’ve sold countless records and toured all over the world with. When meeting the “Superstars” Bill and Tom you’ll be pleasently surprised: both are polite, courteous, taller than you’d think but they still clearly differ from one another. But they agree on one point – the show is a lot of fun, and they want it to be fun for the viewers and their fans as well…
TVdirekt: Why did you decide to join the DSDS-Jury?
Bill Kaulitz: We decided to join this show, because it’s the most successful casting show. In addition to that the winner is going to have the perfect start into the music business. A #1-single and a successful first album are almost guaranteed, plus the winner will also get 500,000 €. That’s a lot of money, which you can still work with as a musician after DSDS.
Tom Kaulitz: It was also very well timed – if we didn’t do it now, we would have never done it.
Bill Kaulitz: DSDS is the show we believe in most. A casting show with a great foundation for the winner.
TVdirekt: Would you have wanted such an entry into the music business for Tokio Hotel?
Tom Kaulitz: We had an incredible amount of luck!
Bill Kaulitz: Yes, our story is a Cinderella story which barely happens in the music business nowadays. We were discovered in a live-club in our hometown. When I look back it seems impossible to me, how it all worked out, that someone actually discovered us in our hometown.
Tom Kaulitz: We were newcomers, got our first record deal with a really small budget for a music video and marketing. We were just incredibly lucky that it worked out so well without such a platform like DSDS.
Bill Kaulitz: Nowadays, the record labels don’t want to spend money on anything. There aren’t a lot of talent scouts left who look for bands and invest in them, as there were ten years ago. As a young musician, especially when you’re from the countryside, you have no opportunity to show that you’ve got talent. How do you want to make it to a big city from a little village with only your talent? Back then we also didn’t know how we should do it and if we should send a Demo to a record label. The show gives the winner a good start into the business and when they’re in, it’s their responsibility to make something out of themselves.
Tom Kaulitz: I think this is exactly what the people are becoming more aware of! Through that, casting shows little by little get a whole other kind of reputation, than they had in the past. Back then the people said, casting – is this really necessary? Meanwhile casting shows are more accepted and respected. The music business changed so drastically, that this is the only way to have some kind of success. We were one of the last bands in Germany, that were able to do it “the natural way”. Today it’s different…in the US some of the greatest artists have been sitting in the Jury of the casting shows for a long time, to give aspiring artists some type of input.
Bill Kaulitz: Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj are on American Idol. Furthermore rock legend Steven Tyler, Jennifer Lopez, Britney Spears also make up Jury’s and look at people, because it’s a great way to find new talent.
Tom Kaulitz: We want to give the people tips for a career behind the scenes and help and support them with their start into the music business.
TVdirekt: How did the castings go? Did you discover any new talents?
Bill Kaulitz: We have a lot of hope. We started casting in Berlin for nine days and saw hundreds of people. That was really strenuous, I have to admit – but it was also fun. 71 of those talents made it to the recall. Later we learned that normally about 120 people make it to the recall, so we were really strict.
Tom Kaulitz: But we were a nice kind of strict!
Bill Kaulitz: We sent some great candidates into the next round and chose 36 people in the Recall who will go on the rest of the journey with us. We’re happy and have some good singers and personalities in there.
Tom Kaulitz: At the recall there were some people, where you expected a lot from them based on the impression they left at their casting, but then they suddenly completely screwed up. This is really the first test, where you can find out who will be able to handle the pressure and who just isn’t cut out for it. We had a great location, the coaches where already doing their work and the candidates had 24 hours to rehearse and learn the song. Some people disappointed and some people surprised us.
TVdirekt: How do the candidates react to you?
Bill Kaulitz: We don’t know what happens behind the camera, but there are certainly people who leave the room and vent about what we told them. We had one or two candidates of this sort.
Tom Kaulitz: There was one girl, we had to tell her that it just wasn’t enough and she looked at us in such a way that you got the feeling that you have to spiritually cleanse yourself.
Bill Kaulitz: There was one guy that stepped into the room, and just really blew me away. There was a moment where I just thought “wow”! I really didn’t expect that. After he sang he started getting really unfair and made a huge scene. He said that he thinks it’s a shitty move from our us that we’re parading him around and making a fool out of him. I stopped him in his tirade and explained that this was not in our interest. Everyone gets their fair chance and we want to have great singers. Some just aren’t good enough during the casting, but they know this beforehand!
Tom Kaulitz: We’ll see what they said backstage when the show airs.
TVdirekt: How hard is being a “Superstar” (winner of the show)?
Bill Kaulitz: A lot of people aren’t aware of what it means to lead this kind of life. During our decision making process it’s not just about good voices and awesome singers. It’s also about who can handle everything that comes with it. For this, the show is a good start, because the candidates get a kind of “crash course”. They’re on TV and around cameras 24/7. They have to give interviews from the start and with the live shows also comes a lot of pressure from the media. If you make it, you’ll also be able to handle everything that comes afterwards. During the casting it’s important to watch who will be able to handle such a life. We had to tell some candidates that they’re too young and fragile to survive in this business – that they’re never gonna lead such a life, that it would be the wrong thing for them.
TVdirekt: Is this your strength in the jury? To estimate the people regarding that?
Tom Kaulitz: I wouldn’t say that it’s our only strength…(laughs) But the experience we have is, of course, a huge advantage. We had to handle a lot of pressure from the media at the beginning of our career, so we can comprehend what kind of phases those people are going through.
TVdirekt: You are now mainly living in Los Angeles. Do you just meet celebrities on the street and go and grab a coffee with them?
Tom Kaulitz: Of course we meet other artists in L.A., but its not the rule that you meet celebrities on the street – I think that’s more of a myth. But I think you’re asking that the wrong people…(laughs)
translation by: Icey
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