A few months ago, thousands of hopefuls queued for hours in the hope that they would impress producers and win a place in the later stage auditions for The X Factor.
Judges’ tryouts kick off in Liverpool in two days time and Gary Barlow, Tulisa Contostavlos, Louis Walsh and a mystery judge will listen and decide the fate of a group of singers, hoping to make it to the live shows.
However, many of the hopefuls who queued and applied in the normal way will be furious to find out that producers have been seeking out talent themselves and inviting people to sing for the judges, without having to queue and stand about at the nationwide venues.
Insiders say Simon Cowell was insistent that staff find a higher level of talent this year, after what he believed to be a flop of a series in 2011. He wasn’t a big fan of any of the acts from last year and is keen to push up the ratings again, by finding some phenomenal singers who will draw the viewers in.
The Sun reports that an invitation sent out to well known acts around the country read:
“Traditionally, all auditionees are invited to X Factor open audition days. If successful they are invited back to a call-back day.
“But we would like to invite you to a special audition day, where you bypass the huge open day crowds. This is your first step to stardom.”
The invite only auditions were held last Sunday, 13th May at SYCO offices in London and insiders say Cowell is hoping the new singers and groups will help his show be seen as a serious contender to the credibility of The Voice.
But some people aren’t pleased about the back door entrance to the competition and one told the newspaper:
“It makes a mockery of the ordinary people. It’s unfair that they queue in the rain for hours and others get invited to cosy auditions.
“They’re encouraging established acts to use the show as a marketing tool.”
An X Factor spokeswoman said: “To ensure we find the best talent we have been exploring all avenues. All contestants are auditioned on merit and everyone has the same number of auditions.”
Do you think this invite only audition session was fair? Leave your comments below. Also, if you have auditioned, then make sure you check out our great auditionees forum. We have hundreds of hopefuls and contestants on there sharing experiences and giving advice, so pop on over!