X-Factor Taping–Auditions

I have never seen an episode of X-Factor.

So why did I spend 7 hours at an X-Factor taping? Well we can thank Mel B (Spice Girl) & Ronan Keating for that!

Waiting To Get In

I attended the third & final audition at the Sydney Entertainment Centre, which was also the final audition nationally.

According to the ticket – doors open at 10am. But the reality? we spent about 2 hours outside lining up and creating ‘opening shots’ for the audition episode which involves a lot of claps and woooosss!!!

Some (underage) girls had the opportunity to dance on a table, not as seedy as it sounds but their prize for 15 seconds of fame? a photo with Luke Jacobs which was met with squeals and one of the dancing girls blankly asking ‘Who is Luke Jacobs?” (I asked myself the same thing). He’s the host, young ladies.
Luke Jacobs
Luke Jacobs on his soapbox

There was also David Eastgate (comedian), his role in the tapings was to entertain the audience when they weren’t filming. Which includes telling the audience what the staff can’t bluntly say, in a non-offensive comedian persona.

When it finally came time for the judges to rock up on the red carpet, it was underwhelming as I didn’t have a good vantage point and it doesn’t help that I’m only 5 feet short! Although I did catch a glimpse of the judges.

Red Carpet
The best I could do – Pic of Guy’s red beanie.

We’re In!
So 2 hours after the stated start time, we got seats where we had a centre view of the whole stage and my camera shy brother was happy that the cameras were solely fixed on those on the ground floor.
The Big Introduction
L to R: Mel B, Guy Sebastian, Natalie Bassingthwaite, Ronan Keating & Luke Jacobs.

There are a number of breaks, during this time the judges go over notes with producers, and touch up their hair & make up.
Judges Sitting
Ronan chatting to the Audience, and the infamous Dave on the far right.

While waiting for contestants, Dave warms up the (restless) audience by chatting with the judges, and epic performances of Ninja Cat (not to be confused with Cat Ninja) and Thunder Dragon. While during performances, egging the audience to go either awww, boo, clap and cheer.

The Contestants

I wanted to go in great length detail about the memorable contestants – but then I realised that would ruin the magic of TV!

As per the instructions, I didn’t take any photos during the actual auditions – hope you enjoy reading.

What’s interesting this year, is that they’ve lowered the age to 14+. All the kids who auditioned were obviously chosen because they had talent and not to be humiliated on national TV.

It was obvious the ‘older’ (16+) contestants were brought on solely to be rejected, and it made me feel uncomfortable watching them holding back tears.

Then of course there was the mix of raw talent, those that simply had ‘it’, and those that had a fantastic voice but made me doze off.  There was the ‘Susan Boyle moment’, where the most amazing, phenomenal voice  comes out of a surprising package.

There were a few repeat offenders from last year, such as the boy band 4tunate which seemed to have a massive following and did in fact deliver on ‘U Got It Bad’ by Usher. Made me feel like I was 14 again!

Here are some other highlights, – so I can say I believed in these people when they were ‘nobody’ (not all made it to the ‘boot camp’ stage, I’m not going to tell you who!)
  • Kyra(?), 24, who works for Nintendo, based on that she in my good books, and she can sing. Described as ‘Miss Nerdy Sassypants’ by Mel B
  • Medina, 14, sang ‘Power of Love’ by Celine Dion, the song choice was mature for a 14 year old. Just watch it on TV!
  • ‘Nikki Webster’s student’, 16, poor thing thought she ‘stuffed up’ (she didn’t!) when singing ‘Saturday Night’ by Jessica Mauboy.
  • Zoe, 29, the model mum. The only contestant to actually get a second chance.
  • The rocker, 35. Forgot his name, but i remember his recollection of his crazy/sad few years. Other than that he did a great rendition of 30 Seconds to Mars,’ ‘Closer to the Edge.’
  • Shaggy impersonator, it was a good kind of bizarre.

At the End of the Day

It was a long but entertaining day. It would’ve been longer if contestants didn’t drop out, I’m assuming they were afraid of the judges or the competition.

While I was disappointed I didn’t get my first ever CD signed (Spiceworld, if your wondering), it was still worth the time to see what goes on ‘behind the scenes’ and I did find myself actually enjoying the show itself and have every intention of tuning in from now on.

I hope to see my favourites go beyond boot camp, with myself and the blog continuing to support them!