Simon Cowell has announced that his next TV challenge will be a talent search for a new stage production of Grease.

The Music supremo is on the lookout for two unknown people to star as Danny and Sandy.

But for once Cowell will not be the dominating force on the programme, remaining behind the scenes while David Ian, who appeared on How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria? with Andrew Lloyd Webber, will be the lead judge.

"Very simply, Grease is the word. In my opinion, Grease is the best musical on the planet. These two parts will be the most sought-after roles in the West End," Cowell said.

"It will work beautifully for us as a reality show. There will be a lot of twists."

Budding West End professionals can expect auditions to begin taking place in the near future, with the stage production expected to open next summer.

Details of the show follow the BBC's announcement yesterday that Andrew Lloyd Webber will aim to copy the success of How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria? with a new TV talent search for the musical Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat.

21/12/2006 10:01:53