As with last year, the audition process has returned to the initial in-room auditions. This sees each contestant perform on their own in a room to the four judges, before they head to the arena.
This year the bigger stage is set at Wembley Arena where contestants have to perform in front of around 5,000 audience members. Once they’ve performed again on their own, the budding hopefuls are split up into groups for Bootcamp. Here they have to work together to perform a song, each getting a solo section to show off their vocals.
If they make it past this stage it’s onto last year’s new addition, the six seat challenge. This is where it all goes a bit Hunger Games-esque as each category battles it out against one other to win one of six seats. With 17 contestants, the odds aren’t really in their favour. See what I did there? Anyway…
The idea is that a judge can award an act a seat, but can later swap them out if a better singer comes along. This isn’t always plain sailing, with Simon Cowell having to remind a booing crowd how difficult it is for the judges and contestants at this stage during yesterday’s filming.
Once they’ve made it past that, and probably had a few cups of tea, they’re off to Judges’ Houses. Here the six acts get to enjoy the glamorous location picked for each judge, while they battle to make the top three.
Then of course they’ve simply got to face the live shows, win over the public, get bundles of votes, perform a whole heap of different songs and win. Easy, right?
This year’s categories have been chosen and (drum roll) Cheryl will mentor the girls, Mel B the boys, Simon Cowell gets to mentor the over 25s, while Louis is looking after the groups.
Time will tell who has the best haul…
Judges’ Houses is a glamorous swap from the bright lights of the studio to warm sunny climes. Locations have included Vegas, Barbados and Antigua in the past, with rumours this year suggesting Mexico and Nice could be on the cards for some of the contestants.
Louis has revealed he’s going far away, so another trip to Ireland isn’t on the cards. There’s been no news on Simon Cowell’s chosen location. Could he be heading back to his Barbados abode, or will he head to his common stomping ground of LA? It seems pop star and long-time X Factor guest judge Sinitta could appear next to Simon. And while Mel B caused an internet storm by posting a picture of her and fellow Spice Girl Victoria Beckham on Twitter, she tells me there’s plenty of people in the pipeline.
Unlike last year, shows won’t swap between in-room auditions on Saturday night and arena auditions on Sunday. Rather, we’ll see all the in-room auditions in a row before switching to the arena. Seems simple enough, eh?
It’s thought the action will kick off on Saturday August 30th but this is yet to be confirmed. Until then, check out the action-packed trailer: