Britain's Got Talent (series 7)
|Britain's Got Talent|
|Broadcast from||13 April– 8 June 2013|
|Presenter(s)||Ant & Dec (ITV)|
|Co-presenter(s)||Stephen Mulhern (ITV2)|
ITV2 (Britain's Got More Talent)
The seventh series of Britain's Got Talent began airing on ITV on 13 April 2013 and ended on 8 June 2013. Ant & Dec returned to present the main show on ITV, while Stephen Mulhern returned to present spin-off show Britain's Got More Talent on ITV2. The judges were Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and David Walliams, all of whom were judges for the sixth series.
The auditions took place in January and February 2013. Auditions began in Cardiff for two days (16 and 17 January) and then moved to London for four days (20–23 January). They then took place in Glasgow on 28 January and Manchester for two days (2 and 3 February), before concluding with three days in Birmingham (8–10 February). The live semi-finals began on 27 May and concluded on 1 June. The live final took place on 8 June 2013 and was won by Hungarian shadow theatre troupe Attraction.
- 1 Judges and presenters
- 2 Auditions
- 3 Semi-finals
- 4 Final (8 June)
- 5 Ratings
- 6 Controversies
- 7 References
Judges and presenters
After the final of the sixth series of Britain's Got Talent on 12 May 2012, head judge Simon Cowell said that he and the three other judges, Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and David Walliams, would all be returning for series 7, "if they will accept [his] invitation". Dixon confirmed her return for the seventh series on 26 July 2012. On 13 October, during an appearance on The Jonathan Ross Show, Walliams announced that he had signed on until 2014, in a deal reportedly worth £800,000. On 13 December, Cowell and Holden were confirmed to be returning to the show as well.
Ant & Dec returned to present the main show on ITV, whilst Stephen Mulhern returned to present spin-off show Britain's Got More Talent on ITV2. It had previously been reported that Mulhern would be leaving the show in order to concentrate on presenting the revived series of Catchphrase on ITV, but he later denied that he had quit and said he would be presenting both shows.
Open auditions were held at The Oval in London on 25 February 2013.
On 4 September 2012, Mulhern revealed that the judges auditions would begin on 7 January 2013, though they were later pushed back to begin on 16 January in order to avoid filming clashes with Catchphrase.
The auditions took place in January and February 2013. Auditions began in Cardiff for two days (16 and 17 January) and then moved to London for four days (20–23 January). They then took place in Glasgow on 28 January and Manchester for two days (2 and 3 February), before concluding with three days in Birmingham (8–10 February).
Cowell missed the first part of the second day of auditions in Manchester due to illness.
|16–17 January 2013||Cardiff||Wales Millennium Centre|
|20–23 January 2013||London||London Palladium|
|28 January 2013||Glasgow||Clyde Auditorium|
|2–3 February 2013||Manchester||The Lowry|
|8–10 February 2013||Birmingham||International Convention Centre|
The first auditions aired from 7.00pm until 8.35pm and the second from 7.00pm until 8.30pm. The third aired from 7.00pm until 8.15pm and the fourth from 7.15pm until 8.15pm.The fifth episode aired from 7.45pm until 8.45pm. The sixth aired from 7.30pm until 8.45pm and the final one from 8.00pm until 9.00pm.
The live shows began on 27 May 2013, the day after the final audition episode, and aired every evening until 1 June, with the exception of the Wednesday (29 May) due to ITV's coverage of England's friendly with the Republic of Ireland. Each semi-final episode aired from 7:30–9:00pm and the results half-an-hour later at 9.30pm after a 30-minute episode of Coronation Street.
Each results show featured a guest performance. The guests were Ashleigh and Pudsey, Demi Lovato, Olly Murs, Jennifer Lopez and Ellie Goulding. Goulding performed on the first live results show, Lopez performed on the second show, Lovato performed on the third show, Murs performed on the fourth show and Ashleigh and Pudsey performed on the fifth show.
- Third place
- Semi-finalist (lost judges' or public vote)
|Name of act||Age(s)||Genre||Act||Semi-final||Result|
|Aaron Crow||44||Variety||Danger act||1||Eliminated|
|AJ & Chloe||17 & 18||Dance||Dancing duo||4||Eliminated|
|Alex Keirl||20||Singing||Singer||4||Eliminated (lost judges' vote)|
|Arisxandra||11||Singing||Singer||1||Finalist (won judges' vote)|
|Asanda||11||Singing||Singer||4||Finalist (won judges' vote)|
|Attraction||19–40||Dance||Shadow theatre troupe||5||Winner|
|Band of Voices||27–47||Singing||Vocal harmony group||1||Eliminated|
|Bosom Buddies||29 & 48||Singing||Drag singing duo||1||Eliminated|
|CEO Dancers||22–24||Dance||Dance troupe||5||Eliminated|
|Chasing the Dream||19-50||Variety||Musical theatre writers/performers||4||Eliminated|
|Club Town Freaks||25–38||Singing||Singers||4||Eliminated|
|Francine Lewis||37||Comedy||Impressionist||4||Finalist (won public vote)|
|Freelusion||25–39||Dance||Interactive 3D dance troupe||3||Eliminated|
|Gabz||14||Singing||Singer/rapper||2||Finalist (won judges' vote)|
|Gospel Singers Incognito||17–43||Music||Gospel choir||5||Eliminated|
|Jack and Cormac||13 & 14||Singing||Singing duo||2||Eliminated (lost judges' vote)|
|Jack Carroll||14||Comedy||Comedian||2||Runner up|
|Jordan O'Keefe||18||Singing||Singer/guitarist||5||Finalist (won judges vote)|
|Joseph Hall||36||Dance||Dancer||3||Eliminated (lost public vote)|
|J Unity||19||Singing||Singing duo||1||Eliminated|
|Luminites||18–21||Singing||Singing group||3||Finalist (won public vote)|
|Maarty Broekman||26||Singing||Singer/keytar player||5||Eliminated|
|Martin & Marielle||32 & 36||Dance||Gymnastic dancing duo||2||Eliminated|
|MC Boy (سعد الصغير)||22||Singing||Rapper||3||Eliminated|
|MD Dancers||14–22||Dance||Dance troupe||2||Eliminated|
|Meat Diva||31 & 27||Singing||Caberet singers||2||Eliminated|
|Pre Skool||5–8||Dance||Dance troupe||3||Finalist (won judges' vote)|
|Richard & Adam||19 & 22||Singing||Classical singers||1||Third place|
|Rob's Duelling Pianos||55||Music||Pianist||5||Eliminated|
|The Glambassadors||21–36||Dance||Dance troupe||5||Eliminated|
|Youth Creation||7–14||Dance||Dance troupe||1||Eliminated (lost public vote)|
Semi-final 1 (27 May)
|Artist||Order||Act||Buzzes and judges' votes||Finished||Result|
|Martin Healey||1||Dancer||9th – 0.1%||Eliminated|
|Band of Voices||2||Vocal harmony group||6th – 1.9%||Eliminated|
|Youth Creation||3||Dance troupe||3rd – 7.2%||Top 3 (Lost judges' vote)1|
|J-Unity||4||Vocal duo||7th – 1.5%||Eliminated|
|Bosom Buddies||5||Operatic drag singers||8th – 1.0%||Eliminated|
|Philip Green||6||Impressionist||5th – 3.3%||Eliminated|
|Arisxandra||7||Singer||2nd – 13.4%||Top 3 (Won judges' vote)1|
|Aaron Crow||8||Danger act||4th – 5.6%||Eliminated|
|Richard & Adam||9||Opera singing duo||1st – 66.0%||Top 3 (Won public vote)|
- ^1 The judges' vote was a split decision. Arisxandra was announced to have received more public votes and was sent through to the final.
Semi-final 2 (28 May)
|Artist||Order||Act||Buzzes and judges' votes||Finished||Result|
|Martin & Marielle||1||Gymnastic dance couple||8th – 0.6%||Eliminated|
|MckNasty||2||Drummer/DJ||5th – 2.7%||Eliminated|
|Jack and Cormac||3||Singing duo||3rd – 15.0%||Top 3 (lost judges' vote)|
|Modupé||4||Singer||9th – 0.5%||Eliminated|
|Meat Diva||5||Cabaret singers||7th – 1.5%||Eliminated|
|MD||6||Dance troupe||6th – 2.3%||Eliminated|
|Alice Fredenham||7||Singer||4th – 12.3%||Eliminated|
|Jack Carroll||8||Comedian||1st – 42.5%||Top 3 (won public vote)|
|Gabz||9||Singer-songwriter/pianist/rapper||2nd – 22.6%||Top 3 (won judges' vote)|
Semi-final 3 (30 May)
|Artist||Order||Act||Buzzes and judges' votes||Finished||Result|
|Freelusion||1||Interactive 3D dance act||7th – 0.9%||Eliminated|
|Robbie Kennedy||2||Singer/guitarist||5th – 12.6%||Eliminated|
|Stevie Pink||3||Illusionist||2||8th – 0.7%||Eliminated|
|Pre Skool||4||Dance troupe||2nd – 16.9%||Top 3 (won judges' vote)4|
|Thomas Bounce||5||Bounce juggler||9th – 0.6%||Eliminated|
|Rosie O'Sullivan||6||Singer||4th – 15.4%||Eliminated|
|Joseph Hall||7||Dancer||3rd – 16.4%||Top 3 (lost judges' vote)4|
|MC Boy||8||Comedy rapper||3||6th – 0.9%||Eliminated|
|Luminites||9||Vocal group||1st – 35.6%||Top 3 (won public vote)|
- ^2 Dixon buzzed after Pink's performance had ended.
- ^3 Holden claimed that Cowell buzzed on her behalf.
- ^4 The judges' vote was a split decision. Pre Skool were announced to have received more public votes and were sent through to the final.
Semi-final 4 (31 May)
|Artist||Order||Act||Buzzes and judges' votes||Finished||Result|
|Club Town Freaks||1||Entertainers||9th – 1.3%||Eliminated|
|Alex Keirl||2||Singer||2nd – 21.4%||Top 3 (lost judges' vote)|
|Shockarellas||3||Street dance act||6th – 3.4%||Eliminated|
|Poppin' Ron||4||Bodypopper||8th – 2.1%||Eliminated|
|James More||5||Illusionist||4th – 14.3%||Eliminated|
|Chasing the Dream||6||Musical theatre writers/performers||7th – 2.2%||Eliminated|
|Francine Lewis||7||Impressionist||1st – 23.1%||Top 3 (won public vote)|
|Asanda||8||Singer||3rd – 19.4%||Top 3 (won judges' vote)|
|AJ & Chloe||9||Latin dance couple||5th – 12.7%||Eliminated|
Semi-final 5 (1 June)
|Artist||Order||Act||Buzzes and judges' votes||Finished||Result|
|CEO Dancers||1||Dance act||7th – 1.2%||Eliminated|
|Aliki||2||Singer||4th – 6.6%||Eliminated|
|The Glambassadors||3||Dance act||8th – 1.1%||Eliminated|
|Steve Hewlett7||4||Ventriloquist||3rd – 12.0%||Top 3 (lost judges' vote)6|
|Rob's Duelling Pianos5||5||Keyboard player||9th – 0.4%||Eliminated|
|Maarty Broekman||6||Entertainer/keytar player||6th – 2.0%||Eliminated|
|Gospel Singers Incognito||7||Gospel choir||5th – 2.5%||Eliminated|
|Jordan O'Keefe||8||Singer/guitarist||2nd – 15.1%||Top 3 (won judges' vote)6|
|Attraction||9||Shadow theatre act||1st – 59.1%||Top 3 (won public vote)|
- ^5 On the previous night's episode of Britain's Got More Talent, it was revealed that Rob's Duelling Pianos would now be a solo act due to one of the members leaving.
- ^6 The judges' vote was a split decision. Jordan O'Keefe was announced to have received more public votes and was sent through to the final.
- ^7 Steve Hewlett was later sent through to the final as the judges wildcard.
Final (8 June)
On 28 May, during Britain's Got More Talent it was revealed that a wildcard act would feature in this year's final. The act was chosen from the 35 semi-finalists who were not initially sent through to the final.
On 4 June, it was announced the wildcard would either be ventriloquist Steve Hewlett or dancer Joseph Hall. Upon this announcement, it was also stated that, while a decision had been made between the two, the public would not discover the wildcard act until Saturday's final. It was confirmed on 8 June during the live final that Hewlett had been sent through to the final as the wildcard act.
|Pre Skool||1||Dance troupe||9th – 2.8%|
|Asanda||2||Singer||11th – 1.2%|
|Gabz||3||Singer-songwriter/pianist/rapper||7th – 3.6%|
|Steve Hewlett||4||Ventriloquist||4th – 14.7%|
|Jordan O'Keefe||5||Singer/guitarist||6th – 3.7%|
|Arisxandra||6||Singer||8th – 2.9%|
|Francine Lewis||7||Impressionist||10th – 2.0%|
|Richard & Adam||8||Opera singing duo||3rd – 15.4%|
|Jack Carroll||9||Comedian||2nd – 20.1%|
|Luminites||10||Vocal group||5th – 6.8%|
|Attraction||11||Shadow theatre act||1st – 27.0%|
|Episode||Date||Official ITV rating
|Weekly rank||Share (%)||Official ITV HD rating
|Total ITV viewers (millions)|
|Auditions 1||13 April||9.58||1||36.9||1.15||10.73|
|Auditions 2||20 April||9.72||1||43.9||1.43||11.15|
|Auditions 3||27 April||9.17||1||43.9||1.31||10.48|
|Auditions 4||4 May||9.60||1||45.0||1.31||10.91|
|Auditions 5||11 May||10.24||1||45.2||1.71||11.95|
|Auditions 6||18 May||9.11||1||38.1||1.25||10.36|
|Auditions 7||26 May||8.09||3||38.0||1.13||9.22|
|Semi-final 1||27 May||9.52||1||41.5||1.46||10.98|
|Semi-final 1 results||7.60||10||31.4||1.14||8.74|
|Semi-final 2||28 May||8.54||6||36.5||1.21||9.75|
|Semi-final 2 results||6.94||14||28.5||0.94||7.88|
|Semi-final 3||30 May||8.17||8||37.5||1.27||9.44|
|Semi-final 3 results||7.18||13||32.3||1.00||8.18|
|Semi-final 4||31 May||8.28||7||37.5||1.12||9.40|
|Semi-final 4 results||7.29||12||32.7||1.03||8.32|
|Semi-final 5||1 June||8.02||9||41.9||1.20||9.22|
|Semi-final 5 results||7.46||11||32.8||1.07||8.53|
|Live final||8 June||10.43||1||48.9||1.80||12.23|
DJ and drummer MckNasty, who successfully auditioned in London on 23 January, is the older brother of singer-songwriter Labrinth, who is signed to Cowell's Syco Music record label. This prompted "fix" claims, and an insider said: "It looked like someone had been pulling strings." However, a spokesman for the show insisted: "To claim that he has been given any advantage is ridiculous and totally untrue. He wowed the audience and went through on his own merits."
Overabundance of singers
Controversy was caused before the show had even aired. When auditions for the series kicked off in Cardiff on 16 January 2013, some fans who were in the audience complained about a lack of variety, as 14 out of the 15 acts they saw were singers.
Many fans also complained about there being six singing acts in the final, particularly about singer Jordan O'Keefe going through instead of ventriloquist Steve Hewlett. Holden defended this, and the number of singers on the show, saying "We left it to the public, they wanted Jordan so that was the right decision. You can't argue with the public's decision."
Keri Graham also caused controversy with her audition, which saw her strip to her underwear, perform a provocative dance and gyrate on Cowell. A spokesman said: "In its seventh series, Britain's Got Talent celebrates variety and showcases a wide range of different acts. Mindful of our family audience, the performance was carefully edited to ensure it was suitably inexplicit."
There were complaints about 71-year-old Kelly Fox's audition as well. Her audition saw her sing a song called "Kiss My Ass", with extremely explicit lyrics. During the performance, Cowell literally kissed Holden's backside. One member of the National Association of Headteachers claimed that scenes which "no mum or dad with an ounce of morality" would want their child to see were being shown too early. Fox defended the controversial song, telling Mancunian Matters: "It was just one teacher's comment in a general attack on television. My mother-in-law is an ex-headmistress, my daughter is a teacher and neither have any problems with my song. I have also been contacted by the headmaster of a local school asking for signed photographs for his 10-year-old pupils."
Britain's Got More Talent was also criticised for showing the audition of burlesque dancer Scarlet Cuffs, who stripped naked, at 8.50pm, ten minutes prior to the 9pm watershed, before repeating the footage at 5.30pm, 6.30am and 1.25pm. Cuffs' audition featured her stripping to The Jungle Book song "The Bare Necessities". Some of the images of Cuffs were pixelated, while the camera also cut away to show judges' and audience reactions. Tony Close, director of content standards at Ofcom, said: "There is a clear line in terms of what it is acceptable to broadcast before the 9pm watershed. A striptease act broadcast at times when a significant number of children were likely to be watching clearly crossed this line. The protection of children from potentially harmful content is a key area of concern for Ofcom, reflected in our ongoing work on the enforcement of the 9pm watershed."
There were complaints that Francine Lewis should not have been allowed on the show because she had previously starred on The Generation Game with Jim Davidson and other impressionist shows, such as Channel 4's Very Important People, and therefore this was more a "second" than first chance. Cowell said the complaints were ridiculous, adding: "everyone deserves a second shot of fame". Lewis did not hide her previous career, but said that this was her chance to "make it big". Lewis advanced to the final of the show but lost.
Some viewers complained that, despite the name of the show, several acts were not actually British or living in Britain, such as Hungarian shadow theatre group Attraction, who won the show; Freelusion, a dance troupe also from Hungary; and two acts from the Netherlands, dance duo Martin & Marielle and singer Maarty Broekman. Cowell, however, has insisted that he is happy to allow foreign acts on the show: "I've always said this, we always welcome everyone from around the world in this competition." He also said "I think it's quite flattering that they fly all that way to enter this show because they see it as the flagship show, but it means our Brits have got to step it up now."
Strictly Come Dancing presenter Bruce Forsyth questioned the show allowing children to audition. He said, "I don't think that's entertainment. I don't think they should put children on that are too young. If you're going to do that, have a separate show. Have a children's show, British Children Have Talent." Cowell responded to Forsyth, stating that: "someone, Mr Grumpy, said we shouldn't have children your age on the show", after the performance of dance troupe Youth Creation. Jessie J joined the debate, declaring: "I cannot agree with kids having to go through three or four auditions when it's purely for ridicule. I don't understand why it's legal, I think it's wrong".
11-year old schoolgirl Arisxandra auditioned successfully in Salford singing Jennifer Hudson's "One Night Only", after which she received a standing ovation from the judges and the audience. However, upon the broadcast of her audition during the launch episode of the series, many viewers were outraged at that the fact that she was singing a song about a one-night stand. Vivienne Pattison, director of Mediawatch UK, said the show was "sexualising children" and that "We are sleepwalking into a situation where pornography is the norm."
The audition of 11-year old Asanda was also criticised for being "sexualised". She sang "Diamonds" by Rihanna, but viewers complained about it for the same reason as Arisxandra's audition – that the lyrics, such as "I see a vision of ecstasy when you hold me", "I knew that we'd become one right away" and "as we moonshine and molly" (a reference to drinking illicit spirits and taking the powder or crystal form of MDMA) were not appropriate for someone her age, as well as her somewhat provocative dancing. Some also took to Twitter to claim that this proved Rihanna is not a good role model for children. However, Asanda's father Lennox insisted that his daughter is "mature for her age": stating, "I know she is young but, believe me, she's ready... We know there will always be negative as well as positive comments. We don't want her to get hurt so we've prepared her. We will always give her our support."
Many viewers said that Jennifer Lopez's "raunchy" performance on the second live results show was inappropriate for family viewing, despite the fact that it was broadcast after the 9:00pm watershed. Lopez arrived on stage wearing a tiny black leotard that barely covered her backside, which she showed to the camera several times. Also, when Ant & Dec asked the judges if there had been any highlights that night, Holden exclaimed: "JLo's arse ... I just wanted to bite it! It was fabulous."
In the final, during the performance of Welsh singers Richard & Adam, a woman—later identified as violinist Natalie Holt —stormed the stage and launched eggs in the direction of Cowell. It was reported that this was because she had failed to reach the next round with her classical band RaVen Quartet during the previous year's series. Ant & Dec stated that Holt's action was not part of Richard & Adam's performance, rather a security breach. Dixon apologised to the group for having their performance interrupted, while Holden was less polite, calling Holt a "stupid cow". Although she eventually apologised, Holt, who claims to have received messages of support from famous musicians, later withdrew this and released a statement which criticised Cowell's influence on the music industry and miming on live television shows.
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