Pop star discovery show The X Factor hits the road in the New Year, heading to holiday hotspots in search of the nation's next popstar.

Pre-auditions begin on January 5 in Queenstown, rolling through 27 cities and towns over the following month.

In a statement, co-executive producer Andrew Szusterman said: "It's the opportunity of a lifetime, and I encourage you to start preparing now."

Judge Stan Walker said: "I know New Zealand is full of amazing people and singers that just need a chance to show how great they are."


Ten pre-auditions are at towns in the South Island. From January 18, the TV3 show shifts to the North Island.

February 1 is the date for south Auckland auditions with central Auckland the next day. The dates coincide with school and university holidays, to give younger singers a chance.

The contest is open to individual and group singers over the age of 14.

Once through the final audition process, the performers are split into boys under 25, girls under 25, the over 25s and group categories.

The X Factor NZ application forms will be available from Wednesday.

Pre-audition dates: www.nzherald.co.nz