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WAPA, Azteca America Gird For Reality

Continuing a trend, two Spanish-language broadcasters, Puerto Rico’s WAPA-TV and Mexico’s Azteca America, are preparing for the summer debuts of reality-type competitions on beauty and musical talent, respectively.

Starting the first week of August, Puerto Rico’s WAPA TV will premiere Por la corona, a 10-week reality competition that chronicles what goes on behind the scenes of the upcoming Miss Puerto Rico pageant to be held Oct. 22. The property, which was formerly held by Telemundo, was this year acquired by WAPA for an undisclosed sum.

According to Joe Ramos, president of WAPA, Por la corona will follow the 78 candidates as they get ready to take part in the pageant to choose the island’s representative in the 2009 Miss Universe contest. Each week, the candidates will face a group of judges, who will evaluate their skills, and the winners will ultimately be selected by the audience using a text messaging system.

Viewers will also have the chance to vote for their favorites is the upcoming La Academia: Última generación de México, the talent competition launching August 24 on the Azteca América network.

Now in its sixth iteration, the competition, the last to be produced in Mexico, pits thousands of young singers from across that nation, the U.S. and Latin America vying for the opportunity to become a star. The competition is set to wrap in late fall.