The search is on for Canada's next Ryan Malcolm. CTV has announced that Canadian Idol, Canadian television's record breaking success story, will return for a second season in Summer 2004. Open auditions will begin in nine Canadian cities starting in mid-February.

CTV has also confirmed that Canadian Idol judges Farley Flex, Jake Gold, Sass Jordan and Zack Werner will all be back for the sequel to the pop culture phenomenon, as will series series host Ben Mulroney.

"Canadian Idol is one of those magical experiences that transcends a mere television show," said CTV President of Programming Susanne Boyce . "It captured the imagination of a country yearning to celebrate our rich musical tradition. Canadian Idol is a property that allows us as Canadians to cheer for ourselves. We can't wait to once again, showcase Canada's enormous musical talent."

Nine Canadian cities were announced as audition cities for Canadian Idol 2 during CTV's two-hour
Christmas broadcast of World Idol. The audition cities will be (from West to East):

• Vancouver
• Edmonton
• Regina
• Winnipeg
• Toronto
• Ottawa
• Montreal
• Halifax
• St. John's

The addition of Regina means the first stop in Saskatchewan for the show while today's news also confirms that the city of Edmonton will host an audition for the first time.

Auditions will be held between mid-February through April, 2004. Once again, auditions for Canadian Idol are open to all Canadians between the ages of 16 and 26 (inclusive).

As producers put the finishing touches on the tour schedule, CTV will announce the audition dates for each city including venue information and other pertinent information in early January at which time all information will be made available on the Canadian Idol Web site,

"We're very please to be able to expand the Canadian Idol search to Saskatchewan, Edmonton and nine cities in total this year," said Boyce. "Fans have not only seen the process, but with Ryan's success, they know it works. We're looking forward to a great turnout across Canada."

Last year, more than 16,000 hopefuls auditioned over a six-week period in Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax, and St. John's. Ryan Malcolm, the eventual winner and Kingston native emerged from the Ottawa audition.

FremantleMedia, formerly known as Pearson Television, is one of the largest international producers of entertainment programmes in the world, producing more than 260 programmes in over 40 territories a year.
FremantleMedia's international distribution division distributes more than 19,000 hours of programmes to 150 countries worldwide. FremantleMedia is the content business production arm of the RTL Group, Europe's largest television and radio broadcast company, with interest in 23 television channels and 22 radio stations in nine European countries. RTL Group is part of Bertelsmann AG, an integrated media and entertainment company that commands leading positions in the world's major media markets.

CTV, Canada's largest private broadcaster, offers a wide range of quality news, sports, information, and entertainment programming. It boasts the number-one national newscast, CTV News With Lloyd Robertson, and is the number-one choice for prime-time viewing. CTV owns 21 conventional television stations across Canada and has interests in 14 specialty channels, including the number-one Canadian specialty channel, TSN. CTV is owned by Bell Globemedia, Canada's premier multi-media company.