Britain's Got Talent (series 8)

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Britain's Got Talent
Series 8
Broadcast from 12 April (2014-04-12) – 7 June 2014 (2014-06-07)
Judges Simon Cowell
Amanda Holden
Alesha Dixon
David Walliams
Ant & Dec (Manchester auditions)
Presenter(s) Ant & Dec (ITV)
Co-presenter(s) Stephen Mulhern (ITV2)
Broadcaster ITV
ITV2 (Britain's Got More Talent)
Winner
Collabro
Collabro.jpg
Origin Leeds, England
Song "Bring Him Home"
Genre(s) Musical theatre
Runner-up
Lucy Kay
Chronology

The eighth series of Britain's Got Talent began airing on ITV on 12 April 2014. Ant & Dec returned to present the main show on ITV, while Stephen Mulhern returned to present the spin-off show Britain's Got More Talent on ITV2. Judges Simon Cowell and Amanda Holden returned for their respective eighth series on the judging panel, whilst Alesha Dixon and David Walliams both returned for their third series. The series is part of a new contract that will keep Britain's Got Talent on the air until 2016.[1]

Auditions for the series took place between January and February 2014 in Belfast, London, Manchester, Birmingham and Cardiff. This was the first series where auditions were held in Northern Ireland, but they did not take place in Scotland. The live semi-finals began on 26 May, and concluded on 31 May. The live final took place on 7 June, and was won by boy band Collabro.[2] Opera singer Lucy Kay finished second, and singing/rapping duo Bars and Melody taking third place. With Electronic dance troupe Light Balance coming in fourth place.

Judges and presenters

Simon Cowell confirmed on 1 June 2013 that the eighth series of the show would air in 2014. He also confirmed that he would return to the judging panel alongside Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and David Walliams.[3] On 15 November 2013, it was announced that Britain's Got Talent would remain on the air until 2016.[1] Cowell did not attend the first day of the Manchester auditions after contracting the flu and was replaced by Ant & Dec. He was again absent during the final day of the London auditions, but was not replaced.

Ant & Dec returned to present the main show on ITV, whilst Stephen Mulhern also returned to present spin-off show Britain's Got More Talent on ITV2.

Golden buzzer

This series saw the introduction of the new golden buzzer. During the auditions, as well as the standard buzzers, there was a golden buzzer placed in the centre of the judges' desk. Each judge was allowed to press this buzzer only once, and it would send that auditionee straight through to the live semi-finals regardless of the opinions of the other three judges.[4] Ant & Dec were given the opportunity to press the golden buzzer as well.[5] The golden buzzer has previously been used on Germany's Got Talent.[6]

Holden was the first judge to use the golden buzzer, pressing it during the second day of the Birmingham auditions on 2 February, for Salsa dancing duo Paddy & Nico.[7] Cowell used it on the second day of auditions in Manchester with hip hop duo Bars & Melody.[8] Walliams used the golden buzzer on the first day of the London auditions on 11 February for performance singer Christian Spridon, leaving Dixon as the only judge yet to use it.[9] The following day, Dixon pressed the golden buzzer on the second day of the London auditions for girl group REAformed.[10] On the final day of London auditions, which Cowell was absent from, Ant & Dec pressed the buzzer for stand-up comedian/impressionist Toju.[11]

Of the five golden buzzer acts, two acts – Bars & Melody and Paddy & Nico – made it to the live final, where they finished 3rd and 9th place respectively.

Auditions

The first episode aired from 8.00pm until 9.15pm. It was originally ment to air from 7.15pm until 8.30pm but was pushed back due to the match going into extra time and penalties. The next two aired from 7.00pm until 8.15pm. The fourth and fifth episode aired from 7.15pm until 8.30pm and 7.00pm until 8.00pm respectively. The sixth episode aired from 8.20pm until 9.35pm. Like the first episode, the episode was meant to air from 7.30pm until 8.45pm and was pushed back due to extra time, penalties and post-match intervews. The final episode aired from 7.00pm until 8.15pm.

Open auditions

Producers' auditions were held from 19 October to 1 December 2013 in Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester, London, Belfast and Edinburgh.[12]

Additionally, to couple with the show's sponsorship with Morrisons, a series of "Talent Spot tents" were set up at various local Morrisons supermarkets around the country. These auditions took place from 2–15 November 2013 in Dundee, Gamston, Killingworth, Norwich, Leeds, Bristol, Wrexham, Plymstock, Liverpool and Swansea. Also, two other sets auditions were held at The Savoy Hotel in Blackpool and The Old Ship Hotel in Brighton on 16 and 17 November, respectively.[13]

Judges auditions

This series saw the first ever judges auditions in Northern Ireland; however for the first time since series 1, auditions were not held in Scotland.[14] A spokesman said: "We have found some great talent in Scotland in the past but we are only able to visit a limited number of cities across the UK and this year we decided to visit Belfast for the first time."[15][16] The auditions began on 18 January in Belfast (Waterfront Hall),[16] before taking place on 22 and 23 January[17][18] in Cardiff (Wales Millennium Centre). Auditions continued on 1–3 February[19][20][21] in Birmingham (International Convention Centre),[17] 7 and 8 February[22][23] in Manchester (The Lowry)[22] and 11–14 February[24][25][26][27] in London (Hammersmith Apollo).[24]

Cowell was forced to pull out of the first day of the Manchester auditions after contracting the flu.[22] Ant & Dec each took a turn replacing him on the judging panel, but both failed to buzz at acts and left the panel.[22][28] Cowell also missed the final day of the London auditions on 14 February due to his girlfriend Lauren Silverman going into labour and was not replaced.[27]

City Date Venue Judges
Belfast 18 January 2014[16] Waterfront Hall[16] David Walliams
Alesha Dixon
Amanda Holden
Simon Cowell
Cardiff 22–23 January 2014[17][18] Wales Millennium Centre[17]
Birmingham 1–3 February 2014[19][20][21] International Convention Centre[29]
Manchester 7 February 2014[22][23] The Lowry[22] David Walliams
Alesha Dixon
Amanda Holden
Ant & Dec
8 February 2014[30] David Walliams
Alesha Dixon
Amanda Holden
Simon Cowell
London 11–13 February 2014[24][25][26][27] Hammersmith Apollo[24]
14 February 2014 Alesha Dixon
David Walliams
Amanda Holden

Semi-finals

The semi-finalists were chosen on 9 March 2014.[31]

The live shows started on 26 May 2014, the day after the final auditions episode, and aired each evening until 31 May, with the exception of the Friday (30 May) due to ITV's coverage of England's friendly with Peru. The first four semi-final episodes aired from 7:30–9:00pm, with the results half-an-hour later at 9.30pm after a 30-minute episode of Coronation Street. The fifth show on Saturday 31 May aired at the earlier time of 7:00–8:30pm, although the results show still aired at 9:30pm.

Each results show featured a guest performance. Ella Henderson performed on the first results show, followed by Ed Sheeran on the second. The third results show featured a performance from The Vamps, followed by will.i.am featuring Cody Wise on the fourth and Attraction & Richard & Adam on the fifth.

Semi-finalists

      Winner
      Runner-up
      Third place
      Finalist
      Semi-finalist (lost judges' or public vote)
Playing card club A.svg Wildcard (previously eliminated act reinstated into the final)
Yellow ffff00 pog.svg Golden buzzer
Name of act Age(s) Genre Act Semi-final Result
The Addict Initiative 17–31 Dance Dance group 2 Finalist (won judges' vote)
Allan Turner-Ward 37 Music DJ 4 Eliminated
Andrew Derbyshire 31 Singing Singer 5 Eliminated
Bailey McConnell 15 Singing Singer-songwriter 5 Eliminated (lost judges' vote)
Bars & Melody Yellow ffff00 pog.svg 13 & 15 Singing Singing/rapping duo 4 Third place
Bolddog FMX Team 24–48 Stunt Motorcycle display team 2 Eliminated
Brian Chan 25 Variety Artist 3 Eliminated
Cartel 16–27 Dance Dance troupe 3 Eliminated (lost judges' vote)
Christian Spridon Yellow ffff00 pog.svg 36 Singing Performance singer 1 Eliminated
Collabro 20–24 Singing Musical theatre singing group 1 Winner
Country Vive 16–35 Dance Country-dancing troupe 1 Eliminated
Crazy Rouge 21–26 Dance Burlesque dance troupe 3 Eliminated
Darcy Oake 26 Magic Magician 1 Finalist (won judges' vote)
Ed Drewett 26 Singing Singer-songwriter 2 Eliminated
Ellis Chick 12 Singing Singer 3 Eliminated
Eva Iglesias 40 Singing Singer 4 Eliminated
Henrietta Adewole 18 Singing Singer 1 Eliminated
Innova Irish Dance Company 14–23 Dance Irish dance troupe 4 Eliminated (lost judges' vote)
Jack Pack 24–33 Singing Singing group 5 Finalist (won public vote)
James Smith 15 Singing Singer 2 Finalist (won public vote)
Jenson Zhu 37 Comedy Comedian/impressionist 5 Eliminated
Jodi Bird 16 Singing Musical theatre singer 2 Eliminated (lost judges' vote)
Jon Clegg Playing card club A.svg 43 Comedy Impressionist 1 Finalist (wildcard)[32]
Kieran & Sarah 26 & 28 Singing Singing duo 4 Eliminated
Kieran Lai 17 Dance Dancer 5 Eliminated
Kings & Queens 18–29 Dance Latin dance troupe 5 Eliminated
Kitty & Rosie 25 & 48 Singing Singing duo 3 Eliminated
Kony Puppets 32 Comedy Puppet dance act 2 Eliminated
La Voix & The London Gay Big Band 26–52 Music Drag artist & orchestral band 5 Eliminated
Lauren & Terrell 12 Dance Dance duo 1 Eliminated
Lettice Rowbotham 24 Music Violinist 4 Finalist (won judges' vote)
Light Balance 19–33 Dance Electronic dance troupe 4 Eliminated
Lucy Kay 24 Singing Opera singer 3 Runner-up
Micky Dumoulin 25 Singing Singer 1 Eliminated
Mini Moves 11–12 Dance Dance troupe 2 Eliminated
Paddy & Nico Yellow ffff00 pog.svg 79 & 39 Dance Salsa dancers 5 Finalist (won judges' vote)
Patsy May N/A Comedy Puppet act 1 Eliminated
Peat Loaf & Elaine 52 & 36 Singing Singing duo 5 Eliminated
Pyroterra 19–26 Variety Fire act 4 Eliminated
REAformed Yellow ffff00 pog.svg 16–21 Singing Girl group 3 Eliminated
Ricky K 33 Comedy Comedic mime act 2 Eliminated
Sam Jones 21 Comedy Ventriloquist 3 Eliminated
SweetChix 14–15 Singing Girl group 2 Eliminated
Toju Yellow ffff00 pog.svg 40 Comedy Stand-up comedian/impressionist 4 Eliminated
Yanis Marshall, Arnaud and Mehdi 24–26 Dance Dance troupe 3 Finalist (won judges' vote)

Semi-finals summary

Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg Buzzed out
Crystal Clear app clean.svg Judges' vote
  Won the public vote
  Won the judges' vote (or public vote if split decision)
  Lost the judges' vote (or public vote if split decision)

Semi-final 1 (26 May)

Contestant[34] Order Act Buzzes and judges' votes Finished[35] Result
Cowell Holden Dixon Walliams
Country Vive 1 Country/western-dance troupe 4th - 4.0% Eliminated
Micky Dumoulin 2 Singer 5th - 3.0% Eliminated
Lauren and Terrell 3 Street dance duo 6th - 2.8% Eliminated
Patsy May 4 Comedy/musical theatre puppet act 7th - 1.3% Eliminated
Henrietta Adewole 5 Singer 9th - 0.8% Eliminated
Jon Clegg 6 Impressionist Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 3rd - 9.4% Top 3 (lost judges' vote)1
Darcy Oake 7 Illusionist Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 2nd - 15.5% Top 3 (won judges' vote)1
Christian Spridon 8 Entertainer Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg 8th - 0.9% Eliminated
Collabro 9 Operatic musical theatre singing group 1st - 62.3% Top 3 (won public vote)
  • ^1 The judges' vote was a split decision. Darcy Oake was announced to have received more public votes and was sent through to the final.

Semi-final 2 (27 May)

Contestant[37] Order Act Buzzes and judges' votes Finished[35] Result
Cowell Holden Dixon Walliams
Mini Moves 1 Dance Group 4th - 7.3% Eliminated
Ed Drewett 2 Singer-songwriter 5th - 7.0% Eliminated
Bolddog FMX Team2 3 Extreme motorbike stunt performers 6th - 6.4% Eliminated
Jodi Bird 4 Musical theatre singer Crystal Clear app clean.svg 2nd - 16.5% Top 3 (lost judges' vote)
SweetChix 5 Girl band 7th - 5.5% Eliminated
Ricky K 6 Comedic mime act Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg 8th - 4.1% Eliminated
The Addict Initiative 7 Dance troupe Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 3rd - 11.4% Top 3 (won judges' vote)
Kony Puppets3 8 Dancing puppet act Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg 9th - 0.5% Eliminated
James Smith 9 Singer/guitarist 1st - 41.3% Top 3 (won public vote)
  • ^2 Bolddog FMX Team's performance was recorded outside, in one take, in advance to the live show.
  • ^3 This was the first time since series 5 that an act in the semi-final had been buzzed off.

Semi-final 3 (28 May)

Contestant Order Act Buzzes and judges' votes Finished[35] Result
Cowell Holden Dixon Walliams
Crazy Rouge 1 Burlesque dance troupe 7th - 1.9% Eliminated
Ellis Chick 2 Singer 4th - 9.7% Eliminated
Sam Jones 3 Ventriloquist 6th - 2.4% Eliminated
REAformed 4 Girl band 5th - 5.2% Eliminated
Brian Chan 5 Painter Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg 9th - 0.5% Eliminated
Cartel 6 Dance act Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 3rd - 11.5% Top 3 (lost judges' vote)4
Kitty and Rosie 7 Singing duo 8th - 1.5% Eliminated
Lucy Kay 8 Opera singer 1st - 45.8% Top 3 (won public vote)
Yanis Marshall, Arnaud and Mehdi 9 Dance act Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 2nd - 21.5% Top 3 (won judges' vote)4
  • ^4 The judges' vote was a split decision. Yanis Marshall, Arnaud & Mehdi were announced to have received more public votes and were sent through to the final.

Semi-final 4 (29 May)

Contestant Order Act Buzzes and judges' votes Finished[35] Result
Cowell Holden Dixon Walliams
Innova Irish Dance Company 1 Irish dance troupe Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 3rd - 13.8% Top 3 (lost judges' vote)5
Kieran & Sarah 2 Opera singing duo 7th - 1.5% Eliminated
Pyroterra 3 Fire stunt performers 8th - 0.7% Eliminated
Toju 4 Stand-up comedian/impressionist 6th - 1.9% Eliminated
Eva Iglesias 5 Singer 5th - 5.6% Eliminated
Allan Turner-Ward 6 DJ Crystal Clear action button cancel.svg 9th - 0.5% Eliminated
Light Balance 7 Computer animation act 4th - 11.7% Eliminated
Bars & Melody 8 Singer and rapper duo 1st - 47.5% Top 3 (won public vote)
Lettice Rowbotham 9 Violinist Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 2nd - 16.8% Top 3 (won judges' vote)5
  • ^5 The judges' vote was a split decision. Lettice Rowbotham was announced to have received more public votes and was sent through to the final.

Semi-final 5 (31 May)

Contestant Order Act Buzzes and judges' votes6 Finished[35] Result
Cowell Holden Dixon Walliams
La Voix & The London Gay Big Band 1 Drag act & orchestral band 6th - 3.3% Eliminated
Bailey McConnell 2 Singer-songwriter/guitarist Crystal Clear app clean.svg 3rd - 12.4% Top 3 (lost judges' vote)
Kings & Queens 3 Latin dance troupe 5th - 3.5% Eliminated
Peat Loaf & Elaine 4 Impersonating/singing duo 9th - 1.5% Eliminated
Andrew Derbyshire 5 Singer 7th - 2.3% Eliminated
Jenson Zhu 6 Impressionist 4th - 4.1% Eliminated
Kieran Lai 7 Bodypopper 8th - 2.0% Eliminated
Paddy & Nico7 8 Salsa dance couple Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg Crystal Clear app clean.svg 2nd - 13.9% Top 3 (won judges' vote)
Jack Pack 9 Rat pack singing group 1st - 57.0% Top 3 (won public vote)
  • ^6 This was the first semi-final since series 4 in which no buzzers were pressed by any of the judges.
  • ^7 On 29 May, it was reported that Paddy & Nico had withdrawn due to injury, but the following day a further announcement was made that Paddy had received the all-clear from doctors and would be able to compete, although the act would be slightly modified.[41]

Final (7 June)

The final took place on 7 June from 7.00pm until 9.30pm.

Contestant Order Act Finished[35]
The Addict Initiative 1 Dance troupe 10th - 2.4%
Jon Clegg 2 Impressionist 7th - 5.2%
Lettice Rowbotham 3 Violinist 8th - 4.0%
Yanis Marshall, Arnaud and Mehdi8 4 Dance act 11th - 1.0%
Bars and Melody 5 Singer and rapper duo 3rd - 14.3%
James Smith 6 Singer/guitarist 6th - 6.9%
Jack Pack 7 Rat pack singing group 4th - 10.6%
Darcy Oake 8 Illusionist 5th - 8.5%
Paddy & Nico 9 Salsa dance couple 9th - 3.6%
Collabro 10 Operatic musical theatre singing group 1st - 26.5%
Lucy Kay 11 Opera singer 2nd - 17.0%
  • ^8 Cowell pressed his buzzer during Yanis Marshall, Arnaud and Mehdi's performance. This was the first time in Britain's Got Talent history that an act was buzzed during a final.

Ratings

Episode Date Official ITV rating[44]
(millions)
Weekly rank[44] Share (%) Official ITV HD rating[45]
(millions)
Official ITV +1 rating[45]
(millions)
Total viewers (millions)
Auditions 1 12 April 10.03 1 45.0[46] 1.82 0.56 12.41
Auditions 2 19 April 8.45 1 40.4[47] 1.49 1.11 11.05
Auditions 3 26 April 8.63 1 42.6[48] 1.76 0.94 11.33
Auditions 4 3 May 8.58 1 42.3[49] 1.52 0.80 10.90
Auditions 5 10 May 8.45 1 41.1[50] 1.77 0.92 11.14
Auditions 6 17 May 8.27 1 40.9[51] 1.85 0.58 10.70
Auditions 7 25 May 7.68 1 38.9[52] 1.52 0.73 9.93
Semi-final 1 26 May 8.74 1 39.1[53] 1.72 0.48 10.94
Semi-final 1 results 7.13 10 33.3[53] 1.44 0.30 8.87
Semi-final 2 27 May 7.60 8 34.9[54] 1.28 0.48 9.36
Semi-final 2 results 5.94 14 27.4[54] 1.02 0.58 7.54
Semi-final 3 28 May 7.82 6 36.7[55] 1.26 0.33 9.41
Semi-final 3 results 6.19 13 28.7[55] 0.98 0.33 7.55
Semi-final 4 29 May 7.70 7 36.7[56] 1.35 0.48 9.53
Semi-final 4 results 6.78 12 33.3[56] 1.20 0.41 8.39
Semi-final 5 31 May 7.00 11 38.1[57] 1.34 0.63 8.97
Semi-final 5 results 5.57 19 28.2[57] 1.18 0.34 7.09
Live final 7 June 9.64 1 49.0[58] 1.89 0.52 12.05
Series average 2014 7.79 N/A 37.6 1.47 0.58 9.84

Controversy

HomeTown

On 15 March 2014, there were "fix" claims when it was revealed that Irish boy band HomeTown, who auditioned successfully, were in fact managed by The X Factor judge Louis Walsh. However the producers denied any wrongdoing.[59] Their audition was not shown on television.

Paddy & Nico

Controversy was also caused when it was announced that dance act Paddy & Nico, who advanced to the semi-finals after gaining Holden's golden buzzer in the auditions, had previously won the Spanish talent show Tú sí que vales, which has a similar format to Britain's Got Talent. Cowell defended the pair, stating; "Don't knock Paddy for performing on a Spanish talent show. She is British and wants the chance to perform in front of our royal family. She is 80 years old. Let her have that chance. You the viewers will decide."[60]

Holden faced backlash, primarily on Twitter, after comparing Paddy's performance spirit to the soldiers on D-Day in 1944.[61] After Paddy & Nico's final performance, Holden commented, "I'm so proud of you. You have come back from injury with fighting spirit...I hope that today is Pad-D Day". Many tweets expressed the distaste in comparing Paddy Jones to soldiers that had fought in the war.

Ed Drewett

Cowell was not present at the audition of singer Ed Drewett; however many believed that this was set up as Cowell would have recognised him as Drewett has previously penned songs for The Wanted and One Direction. It was also reported that Drewett had been asked to audition by producers so that Cowell could sign him to Syco Music later on.[62] In response to these claims, Drewett insisted that he had never met Cowell before his audition. He said, "I can completely see why people think, 'Oh, hang on, One Direction are with Syco, Syco do Britain's Got Talent, they must be paying him!' Not at all. It's just if someone wants a song, I'm going to give it to them, especially if they're One Direction."[63]

Cartel

Cowell was accused of ageism during Northamptonshire-based dance troupe Cartel's audition. He stated that 27-year-old Jamie Mitchell was too old to be in the group (the other members were teenagers), and claimed that he "stuck out like a sore thumb".[64][65] Despite Cowell's reservations, the group made it to the semi-finals,[66] where Cowell apologised to Mitchell.[67]

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