The Britain’s Got Talent auditions have been a welcome distraction from these strange times, livening up our Saturday nights and providing some much-needed razzmatazz.
But the auditions are only half the story. Usually we would see Simon and the judges looking back over the tapes before deciding which acts would make it through to a week of live shows, at the end of which the public would vote for their winner.
This year, social distancing and lockdown rules have scuppered our chances of seeing the live shows in their usual springtime slot. So when will they take place? And when will we have the chance to choose a winner to appear at the Royal Variety Performance?
What are the Britain’s Got Talent live shows?
After the fun of the audition shows, Ant and Dec present a week of live semi-finals, featuring performances from the Golden Buzzer acts and the best of the rest. Each show ends with a public vote, putting the top acts through to the grand finale on Sunday night, where the winner is crowned. The shows usually feature celebrity performances too.
When do the Britain’s Got Talent live shows usually air?
Straight after the audition shows, in late May or early June. For obvious reasons, it won’t be possible for the shows to take place at the same time this year.
When can we expect the 2020 Britain’s Got Talent live shows to air?
ITV has always been clear that the live shows will still take place at some stage – along with the live semi-final and final of The Voice – but nobody is quite sure when that will be possible.
Judge Amanda Holden said there is now a date pencilled in her diary for later this year. “All of the judges have been given a date to hold in early autumn to see if it works live. We would never do it without an audience because we’ve always said the British public is the fifth judge. It would be no fun without them!”
Meanwhile, fellow judge David Walliams hopes fans will understand the reasons behind the strange scheduling. “There will be a gap [between the auditions and live shows] but hopefully people will forgive us,” he says. “It’s such a joyful show, it’s life-affirming.”
ITV has said: “We are also working with our production colleagues to see how we can make the BGT live shows work in an ever changing situation and we will update on this in due course.”
RadioTimes.com has approached ITV for further comment.
Britain’s Got Talent will return to ITV later in the year. To find out what else is on, check out our TV Guide.