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Glee: Season 1 - Preview

A promotional shot from Glee.

Preview by Jack Foley

PREPARE to be Gleed! Last year (2009), a new TV show has captured America and become both a total sensation and the most talked about programme of the year.

With a unique mix of twisted humour, a cast of amazingly diverse characters, a plot that defies typical rules and featuring a fantastic genre defying soundtrack bursting with show-stopping musical numbers, Glee was essential viewing.

Co-Creator and Nip/Tuck writer Ryan Murphy defines the show’s title Glee as “malicious optimism”. A prime time comedy featuring all singing, all dancing social outcasts, pregnant cheerleaders, idiot jocks and wannabe divas, the show has also created a massive buzz with the unique way its music is sold – two tracks weekly on the back of every episode.

The music covered in the show is equally eclectic, with the cast performing songs by the likes of Amy Winehouse, Kanye West, Rhianna, Queen, Salt’n’Pepa, Heart and even tracks from Cabaret and Wicked.

Glee has begun a revolution in US music sales with the cast version of the Journey hit Don’t Stop Believin’ exploding on iTunes and selling over 500,000 copies.

It entered The Billboard Hot 100 at no. 4 and since then the GLEE cast have sold over 3 million downloads in the US alone.

The first soundtrack album released on Columbia Records, Glee: The Music Volume 1 has also been a huge success debuting at no. 4 in the Billboard album chart in November 2009.

Now Glee is coming to the UK. E4 showed a sneak preview of the pilot episode on Tuesday, December 15 featuring pilot tracks Don’t Stop Believin’ and Rehab, which were available to download the day before.

The series begins its official UK run with Episodes 1 and 2 airing Monday, January 11, 2010 at 9pm on E4.

Glee opens with high-school teacher Will taking on the Herculean task of transforming the school’s lacklustre ‘Glee Club’ into a world-class vocal ensemble, worthy of competing at the biggest school singing competition: The Nationals.

But it’s going to be a long road back to the top since the brightest stars of the club include; Kurt, a nerdy soprano with a flair for the dramatic; Mercedes, a diva-in-training who refuses to sing back up; Arty, a wheelchair-bound geeky guitarist who attracts more bullies than girls; and Tina who just needs to suppress her stutter before she takes centre stage.

But that’s not their only problem as the power hungry cheerleading coach, Sue Sylvester sets out to derail Will’s journey to the Nationals by any means necessary.

Will’s greatest hopes lie with Glee Club members Rachel, a perfectionist wannabe and Finn, the popular high school quarterback who’s more interested in protecting his cool jock reputation than showing off his Motown voice.

Glee begins on Monday, January 11, at 9pm on E4. On My Own and Can’t Fight This Feeling from Episode 1 (pilot) and Push It and Take A Bow from Episode 2 will all be available to download before the show on Monday, January 11, 2010.

Glee: The Music Volume 1 will be released by Epic Records in March 2010.

View promo photos from Glee