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South Korean Rap Competition Series to Hold Auditions in U.S.

Aspiring rappers in America will soon get their chance to “Show Me the Money.”

The popular South Korean rap survival reality show announced this week that it will hold preliminary auditions in the United States for the first time.

The show, which airs on Korean music channel Mnet, has become a pop culture phenomenon since it began in 2012, and is considered largely responsible for the rising popularity of hip-hop in South Korea. Songs and artists on the show often top Korean music charts, and quotes instantly become memes. "Show Me the Money" boasts a number of Korean celebrities and artists as judges and contestants, with even Snoop Dogg making a guest judge appearance last season.

"Show Me the Money" has also led to a spin-off competition centered around female rappers called "Unpretty Rapstar."

In its press release announcing the stateside auditions, Mnet wrote, “With the new season right around the corner, the show received numerous requests from rappers overseas who want to participate in 'Show Me the Money.' We wanted to give rappers overseas the opportunity to participate, allowing us to introduce a wider variety of talented rappers to the public.”

The show's open recruitment allows everyone from unknown amateur rappers to K-pop idol members to compete. Notable past participants include Bobby and B.I. from K-pop idol group iKON, WINNER’s Mino, Loco, and Basick.

The first round of auditions will run from Feb.1 to Mar. 6, with further details to be announced on the Mnet website in February. The new season is expected to begin airing in May.

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