Wednesday June 29; Kingston, Jamaica: This is it! The Digicel Rising Stars’ Live shows are finally here! The 12 finalists have been selected by the Judges and the first batch of six will perform live on TVJ this Sunday July 3 at 8PM.

The show’s Producer, Sharon Schroeter, says fans can expect an exciting season: "Every year our aim is to make the show bigger and better and this year is no exception. We have brand new themes and challenges which we feel will push the contestants to really show their true potential and of course our new judges are excited to see what the contestants can bring to the live stage."

New resident Judge, Tessanne, can’t wait for the Live Shows: “I'm soooo excited about the start of the live shows , this is where the real competition starts and I think we're gonna see the Top 12 in a whole new way, whether good or bad will be up to them.

I think it's going to be, for me, very important to see how they react and interact with a live audience and also, very importantly, with a live band. It's a very crucial time for the Top 12 to prove why they deserve to be here and I'm looking forward to seeing some excellent performances and evidence of some growth thus far.”

Resident Judge Bambino is also looking forward to seeing the contestants on a live stage: “I can't wait to see how contestants perform on live shows, it’s a totally different arena than auditions and they really have to impress the viewers to get votes, so personality has to shine. They are all good singers so now we will see how they perform under pressure.”

With a new host, Resident Judges and themes, the Chill Room will be also be getting a complete make-over as RIM Blackberry will create a more hi-tech and interactive setting. An example of what Blackberry will be offering is the integration of social media such as Facebook and Twitter, so fans online can be a part of the live action each week. Schroeter explains: “We have over 30,000 fans on Facebook alone and thousands of Twitter followers and they are always commenting and asking questions during the show, so this year, with the help of Blackberry, we will integrate those fans’ questions and comments into the Chill Room.”

All New resident judges, host, Chill Room, weekly guest judges, themes and challenges and new contestants make Season 8 of Digicel Rising Stars the “Must Watch” TV show for 2011. Meet the first six finalists: Jermaine Burford, Delando Colley, Latoya Jackson, Annette Fraser, Stephanie Barnes and the 5 member male group, V.O.H. on TVJ at 8PM Sunday July 3 on the first live show of Jamaica's biggest talent show, Digicel Rising Stars.