The Stage

Blogs

TV Today

First Look: Britain’s Got Talent

Last night was the press launch for Britain’s Got Talent, the latest co-production between TalkbackThames and Simon Cowell’s SyCo for ITV1. Eschewing the singer-only shenanigans of The X Factor, BGT goes back to the heart of British live entertainment: the variety act.

Britain's Got Talent - auditions

Stripped over nine successive days starting this Saturday, the show will whittle down thousands of light entertainment artists to find a winner who, as well as winning a £100,000 cash prize, will get a guaranteed spot in this autumn’s Royal Variety Performance.

As with X Factor, there are a series of audition shows (which will be aired on June 9-13) until a series of three live ‘semi-finals’ (June 14-16), with eight acts battling for enough phone votes to get through to the grand final. Two acts from each semi-final will return for the Grand Final on June 17.

I have to admit, prior to seeing the first recorded audition show, I was wary. After all, the X Factor audition programmes (as with their Grease is the Word offspring) tend to fill an inordinate amount of screen time with plainly deluded wannabes being abused and humiliated by the judges. But there’s little of that here. That’s partly, I suspect, because of the quality and diversity of the acts. A bigger factor, though, is the fact that all the auditions take place on stage, with a theatre packed to the rafters with members of the public. The result is an electric atmosphere that has no chance of ever descending into mean-spiritedness.

As a result, all three judges — Piers Morgan, fresh from the US version, America’s Got Talent, actress Amanda Holden and the ubiquitous Simon Cowell — come across as likeable, enthusiastic and supportive. When allied with the infectious good humour of presenters Ant and Dec, ITV are clearly onto a winner here.

In the first show, look out for a male baton twirler, who was discouraged from the hobby by parents who feared he may be bullied. With his grandmother’s support, he puts in a superb performance. The TV hack beside me at the press launch (whose identity I’ll not divulge to spare her blushes) was blubbing at the emotional reception he was awarded by the audience.

If the standard of the show can be maintained across all nine days, then not only will the show be a success, but there’s a strong chance that the humble live variety act, a staple part of The Stage’s professional audience throughout our 127-year history, could well enjoy a much-needed revival.

  • Britain’s Got Talent starts on Saturday June 9, 9.25pm on ITV1.

21 Comments

With the format being open to all ages it has almost ended up as a show for ambitious parents. Couple this with three judges who know nothing about variety and we are yet again giving amateurs the chance ahead of working entertainers, many who are quite good enough to deserve a TV slot, and a RVS appearance, but will never be given the opportunity

Hello is more of a question than a comment when tony fur sang on tuesday nights show there was a song played in the background does anyone know the name of it??

i just want to say that md productions are excellent and especially tiffany and michaela done really well they were both magnificent

hi guys sorry i made a mistake wiv his name its tony laf could anyone help me with the name of the song in the background when he was standin ther plz

Britians got talent was amazing, so much talent out there, Urban strides dance crew were so fresh and talented was very disappointed that they didnt get throu, they were by far the most original and there dancing ad me on my chair dancing, Crew 82 were wicked aswell i want them to win xxxxxxxx from kazza, London x

Britians got talent was amazing, so much talent out there, Urban strides dance crew were so fresh and talented was very disappointed that they didnt get throu, they were by far the most original and there dancing ad me on my chair dancing, Crew 82 were wicked aswell i want them to win xxxxxxxx from kazza, London x

The song I heard in the background was Whitney Houston's "Greatest Love of All". Not sure who was singing this rendition of it though.

If you guys really knew how they treated us contestants that got through to the last 126 acts from 50,000 you would be disgusted!!!

Left in a boiling hot room for 10-12 hours with no information. Hardly any food or water... etc etc ..

The story continues on many forums... especially ours, follow the link below.

I really think that MD productions should of got through last night - they are sooo good - it really bugs me when you see talent like that that just goes to waste. I think that they deserve a second chance and they should of been put through. The others were good but I think that for entertainment value a big group of fantastic performers like that would be more deserving of the prize! They were different and its always the same sort of acts that get put through and it just becomes boring watching the same thing all the time. Please let us watch something different for a change. :-)

i think the little six year old connie was amazing and that opera singer , i really want one of them to win , it was asham that the mini mezzos and md productions went out because they were good as well and i'm also glad that that singing and dancing girl went through i definetly think she could be big in the west end

Report this comment

Md productions were fabulous cant believe they neva made it through, there where excellent, cnt believe da singin monkey got frew :O:@:@ but they were amazing n they will get sumwere in life i no they will, just hope that the competition is won by some whos deresrves it like that little connie she is fab or scott because he is another amazing dancer x x x

Report this comment

well its dwn 2 connie to win this now an i hope that every1 votes 4 her, she is tha cutest 6 yr old i have ever seen, i think she deserves it, the barwizards r amazing but connie is just the best every1 vote connie x x x

I THINK THE 6 YEAR OLD WAS FABULOUS, BUT PAUL POTTS BLEW ME AWAY. I HOPE HE WINS

I think Connie should win! She's so cute! The barwizards where good but i think Scott was better! I was shocked he didn't get through! Also the Kombat Breakers shouldn't have got through! The Queen wouldn't want to see that!

well folks - cute didn't make it - talent did - you go Paul!!!

Heya simon the song in the bckground when tony laf was singin was Rosé by the Feeling what a good song hope this helps

heya britain got talent waz kwl. i wuz gutted 4 connie when she didnt get thou. i thought she was great.

i thought britains got talent wz immense and i thought tht connie shoud have won but paul is a good singer so its okay!

hey md production were propa boss and dey shud of won even though the power cuts was on and they wud of won and they wud of got dat money and met da queen
lv ya lois in da md performance x

Ian Evans is a gay boy

aewdsa saf wefrasf adsf sdaf

Loading
Subscribe to The Stage Podcast (iTunes edition) Square Eyes: Twice weekly TV previews Turn off the TV: TV Today's radio picks

Recent Comments

Jessica on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
aewdsa saf wefrasf adsf sdaf...
Lacey Duvalle on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
Ian Evans is a gay boy...
melissa x on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
hey md production were propa boss and de...
:.Mimzy.: on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
i thought britains got talent wz immense...
Chelsea on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
heya britain got talent waz kwl. i wuz g...
Stuart on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
Heya simon the song in the bckground whe...
Bonnie on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
well folks - cute didn't make it - talen...
Ciara on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
I think Connie should win! She's so cute...
LINDA on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
I THINK THE 6 YEAR OLD WAS FABULOUS, BUT...
...LydiaHowey<3] on First Look: Britain's Got Talent
well its dwn 2 connie to win this now an...

Content is copyright © 2012 The Stage Media Company Limited unless otherwise stated.

All RSS feeds are published for personal, non-commercial use. (What’s RSS?)