NBC has just announced in a press release that they will begin to hold auditions for the network's newly signed country music talent show Nashville Star. The sixth season of the hit show will include duets and trios as well as solo artists. Here's the press release from NBC:

The hit country music talent search Nashville Star is gearing up for an exciting sixth season this summer -- now on NBC -- and the producers are crisscrossing the nation looking for the next music superstar. As with last year's show on USA Network, the winner of this season's search will receive a recording contract with a major label.

The multi-city casting tour will kick off its regional search in Pittsburgh and Milwaukee on February 9, and is scheduled to hit Charlotte, North Carolina; Kansas City, Missouri; Tallahassee, Florida; Denver, New Orleans and Portland, Oregon, all in the same month (see specific schedule below).

For the first time in series' history, the producers will expand the search to include solo artists, duets and singing trios. Anyone over the age of 16 is encouraged to audition. Please visit NBC.com or NashvilleStarCasting for additional rules and information.

The two-hour season premiere this summer will feature a behind-the-scenes look at the best and worst talent vying for a spot in this year's competition.

Specific information follows for the open auditions to be held in the following cities:

Saturday, February 9

Pittsburgh

12 noon - 6 pm

The Saddle Ridge

4 Station Square Dr.

Milwaukee

American Serb Memorial, President's Hall

12 noon - 5 pm

5101 West Oklahoma Ave

Wednesday, February 13

Charlotte

Coyote Joe's

7 p.m. -11 p.m.

4621 Wilkinson Blvd.

Kansas City, Missouri

The Beaumont Club

4 pm - 9 p.m.

4050 Pennsylvania

Sunday, February 17

Tallahassee, Florida

Floyd's Record Shop

4 p.m. - 9 p.m.

666-1 W. Tennessee St.

Denver

The Grizzly Rose

12 noon - 5 p.m.

5450 N. Valley Highway

Thursday, February 21

New Orleans

11 a.m. - 5 p.m.

3301 Veterans Memorial Blvd.

Metairie, Louisiana

Portland, Oregon

Rose Quarter/Memorial Coliseum Exhibition Hall

12 noon - 6 p.m.

One Center Court

How it works:

1. Those auditioning will perform a song off the approved song list.

2. A select few of the most talented will be asked to perform additional material for the producers. Applicants should be prepared to sing two cover songs from the approved song list or one song off the list and one original song.

As stated above, the auditions are open to men and women, solo artists, duets and singing trios, ages 16 and over (as of March 29, 2008), who think they have what it takes to become the next Nashville Star. Updated information on auditions including cities, locations and times, song lists, applications, as well as how to audition if applicants can't make it to an open call, can be found on NBC.com or NashvilleStarCasting.

Nashville Star is the original grassroots talent search to find America's next great country music star and the longest-running competition series on cable. The winner of this last installment received a major recording contract with Warner Bros. Nashville.

The first four seasons of the series have launched the careers of promising artists including Chris Young, Buddy Jewel, Miranda Lambert, Lance Miller and Angela and Zac Hacker -- the siblings who made it a family affair by coming in first and second, respectively, last season.

Nashville Star is created by Reveille and produced by 495 Productions. Ben Silverman, Howard T. Owens (American Gladiators), Mark Koops (The Biggest Loser) and Sally Ann Salsano (HGTV Design Star, A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila) serve as executive producers.

Brian B.