Credit: 2013 FOX

We’ve already devoted hundreds of words to why we think Harry Connick, Jr. is the dreamiest  American Idol is better than ever this season. Now, as if to inspire us even further, FOX has announced a major face lift for the entire show! Ryan Seacrest, you’ve got yourself some shiny new digs! 

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Season 13 will play out on a brand new set with details like a second stage located directly in front of the audience, a lounge for contestants to watch as their fellow wannabe winners take the mic, and two upper levels open to lucky audience members looking for a bird’s eye view. The overall effect will, THR says, provide a “360-degree environment” that will make Idol an even more inclusive entertainment experience, not unlike fellow music reality show The Voice.

Thanks to the new stage Idol executive producer Jesse Ignjatovic says this season’s live performances will “touch the whole room.”

“Perhaps a performance could start [in one spot] and traverse the whole room,” Jesse explains. “A lot of energy [will be] focused on our performances.”

The show is also mixing up its color pallette, opting for gold rather than the traditional blue both in accents around the stage and in the main Idol logo.

Look for the new stage to premiere tonight (February 18), as Idol airs its first Live Show of the season. The Top 31 contestants will be spending the week trying to work their way into the Top 13. It’s going to be a brutal round of cuts — but hey, at least we’ll have something pretty to look at through our tears.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Elisabeth Kramer is an Assistant Editor at Wetpaint Entertainment and our resident Downton Abbey expert. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!