Jason Dundas ready for X Factor debut
JASON Dundas had to draw from a variety of skills as the new host of The X Factor.
The TV presenter and model is part of Seven's Next Generation-themed revamp of the reality singing franchise, which also features new judges Iggy Azalea and Adam Lambert.
The eighth season debuts tomorrow night, when viewers will see a new crop of vocal hopefuls take to the stage for their first auditions in front of the judges and a packed studio audience.
"It's a pretty emotional role," Dundas tells APN.
"You're the first person they see (before their audition) and the last person they see after they get through or not. I see my role as a support system and cheer leader.
"I don't know if they can sing before they get on stage so I believe in all of them."
Monday's premiere features a diverse group of singers ranging in age from 14 to 34.
"The contestants all have their own take on things, and as the season unfolds you'll see some pretty unique talent," he said.
"Some acts are very surprising and some threw me for a loop a bit, but all in all the talent seems incredible."
But the new job also came with a big responsibility: keeping the identity of the show's mystery underdog judge a secret from the public, media and even the three other judges
"It was a very close secret," he said. "I can say the judge is a she.
"It's such a nice twist and it puts a bit of pressure on the other judges."
Dundas rose to fame after winning a competition to present a TV series for MTV at the age of 19. He went on to work on travel series Getaway and found success in the US as a correspondent for Entertainment Tonight and as the host of America's Best Dance Crew.
That background should come in handy for the X Factor's live shows.
"When I come back (from LA) for the live shows it will be great to be based here for a period of time to get back into the groove of being an Aussie," he said.
"I don't think I'd have the guts to get on the stage (to sing live) but I will in a hosting capacity."
The eighth season of The X Factor premieres tomorrow at 7.30pm on Channel 7.