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Bravo reveals the identities of its 'Top Chef' contestants

By Reality TV World staff, 12/17/2005 

Bravo revealed the identities of the twelve aspiring chefs who will compete in Top Chef, its new reality competition series that will premiere Wednesday, March 15 at 10PM ET/PT.

First announced this past summer and hosted by Katie Lee Joel, the 24-year-old trophy wife of 56-year-old music icon Billy Joel, Top Chef will be a Hell's Kitchen-like series in which twelve aspiring chefs will compete for "their shot at culinary stardom and the chance to earn the prestigious title of 'Top Chef.'"

A ten-episode series, Top Chef was shot on location in San Francisco and is executive produced by Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz of Magical Elves, the same team that produces Project Runway and Project Greenlight series and is also working on NBC's upcoming The Amazing Race-like Treasure Hunters series.

Each Top Chef episode will feature two challenges for the aspiring chefs -- a "quirkfirst test" of their basic abilities and a more involved elimination challenge that will test their "versatility and invention" as they take on unique culinary trials. All of their food will be tasted and evaluated by Joel and the show's judges, however the dishes will also have to appeal the challenge's customers -- which will range from five star restaurant patrons to a room full of hungry kids.

At the end of each episode, one of the aspiring chefs will be asked to "pack up their knives" and head home. In addition to landing the title of "Top Chef," the winning contestant will also receive $100,000 in seed money to help encourage their culinary career, be featured in Food & Wine magazine, and appear at the Food & Wine Classic in June 2006.

The twelve aspiring chefs who will be competing on Top Chef are:

• Stephen Asprinio, a 24-year-old from Las Vegas, NV
• Andrea Beaman, a 37-year-old from New York, NY
• Harold Dieterle, a 28-year-old from New York, NY
• Tiffani Faison, a 28-year-old from Las Vegas, NV
• Brian Hill, a 36-year-old from Los Angeles, CA
• Candice Kumai, a 23-year-old from Pasadena, CA
• Kenneth Lee, a 31-year-old from Dublin, Ireland (currently living in Los Angeles)
• Dave Martin, a 40-year-old from Los Angeles, CA
• Miguel Morales, a 27-year-old from New York, NY
• Lisa Parks, a 45-year-old from Los Angeles
• Cynthia Sestito, a 54-year-old from East Hampton, NY
• Le Anne Wong, a 28-year-old from New York, NY

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