BGT in 1,2,3: semi-final 1 recap

Ant's beard, a potential winner and near death sums up tonight's first Britain's Got Talent semi-final...

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Britain’s Got Talent’s live semi-finals have started and that means a bumper week of shows. A whopping nine acts will take to the stage each night, hoping to earn one of two spots in next Saturday’s final.

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While they concentrate on their performances and what judges Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and David Walliams have to say, we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled for the three standout moments of the night. Like tonight’s first semi-final where it was beard chat, near death and a potential winner on the menu…

1. Ant’s beard causes a stir

Well, well, well as soon as the show got going there was action thanks to Ant’s brand new beard. Oh yes ladies and gentleman, it’s the big news first of all: Britain’s Got Beard Love.

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Indeed, the usually clean-shaven co-host sported a bit of stubble and the internet went wild.

“It’s like yours, less grey,” Ant teased boss Simon Cowell, who, conversely, got a fair bit of ribbing tonight. David Walliams joked Cowell would one day end up pickled and in a BGT museum, while Amanda Holden noted he should probably think about proposing to his girlfriend who she knew would be watching at home. Awks. Perhaps Cowell should have his own secret button to quickly shove the action to a close-up of Ant’s beard to distract us all. Or perhaps a commercial break? Although there’s quite enough of those…

2. Alesha Dixon ‘screwing up’ an act

The second biggest moment of the night came thanks to a botched performance from crossbow shooter Ben Blaque.

Blaque has a penchant for putting the judges in danger. In his first audition it was Mr Cowell who faced a blindfolded Blaque firing arrows in his direction. Tonight the tables were turned and Ms Dixon was supposed to fire arrows at the performer, the idea being she (somehow) avoided the one aimed to kill.

However, Dixon – who admitted she was finding the whole thing quite fun – didn’t only pour cold water on the intensity and this-is-really-near-death-stuff vibe, she accidentally shot two arrows at once.

With some excellent skills on the pause button by BGT’s viewers you can see that Blaque was very nearly hit. Yikes.


But it’s OK because Cowell said screwing it up made it more entertaining. “I could see how nervous you were – Alesha being an idiot made it better,” he insisted. Sure, a man nearly being impaled is exactly what we tune in for.

3. A potential winner

In all honesty this first semi-final was a bit slow going. The singers were good but didn’t blow the roof off, the dance acts were OK but got a bit slow in the middle and while there were no buzzers the judges weren’t afraid to be honest with their critique (cough, Simon telling one act their dancing was “lazy”). 

So there was a sense of ‘thank goodness for them’ when Alesha Dixon’s Golden Buzzer act 100 Voices of Gospel took to the stage. Packing a punch with their vocals and dazzling with their fancy footwork Cowell layered on the praise:

“Your first audition was fantastic… in my opinion this was better. This was in such a different league to everything else I’ve heard tonight. By far the best choir I’ve heard.”

“I want an application form so that I can join…” gushed a chuffed Dixon.

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“It was more than a vocal performance, it was a show,” Cowell added. “Every one of you gave 100%. This is the act for me that after 10 years could and should win.”

Now that’s what we want to be hearing.

It was perhaps no surprise then that they were the first semi-final winners with Mel and Jamie joining them in the final, too. 

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The Britain’s Got Talent semi-finals continue tomorrow at 7:30pm on ITV