While speaking to the press at today’s NBC Summer Press Day 2011 in Pasadena, CA, THE VOICE executive producer Mark Burnett spoke about what makes this singing competition show different than AMERICAN IDOL and other shows of its ilk.

The coaches, which include Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Blake Shelton and Adam Levine (of Maroon 5), are a start.

“We have four superstar music performers that are at the top of their game and that was really important to me,” says Burnett. “We wanted people who are at the top of their game currently, worldwide. I think it makes a big difference to an audience.”

There won’t be any people who can’t sing auditioning either. The show champions voice over anything as the four coaches pick contestants based on how they sound and not how they look. Then they coach and guide them on to (potentially) winning.

“Other shows have made great television of the comedy to sing who clearly can’t sing – it’s part of the comedy for the show,” says Burnett. “We made a conscious choice not to do that at all. Not one person steps on that stage who isn’t good.”

The contestants are also not strictly unknowns.

“There are people who have been on a label, toured and other competition shows before – we wanted to be equal opportunity,” says Burnett. “Many people have tried over and over in their careers and never quite hit it. What we’ve learned, there’s a big line between very good and great. On this show, [the contestants] are great. They are absolutely great people and that was the deciding favor we cared about. Some very good, some great and that’s where you see all these guys press those buttons – to get that person on their team. It’s great fun and what a lovely moment to be an unknown singer being in a room with Blake, Cee Lo, Christina and Adam and five minutes after singing, they’re quizzing them why they should be on their team. It’s bizarre on one level and fun too.”

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