Reality TV veteran Olly Murs has an unusual vantage point compared to his other coaches on The Voice UK, thanks to his roots on rival show The X Factor.
As well as appearing as a young hopeful in front of Simon Cowell (so far, so Jennifer Hudson), Murs, 34 has also hosted sister show The Xtra Factor, as well having a short-lived run as the host of the main show itself with Caroline Flack, back in 2015.
But the X Factor doesn't have the same pulling power as it once did; in its heyday it was television’s biggest show, effortlessly drawing 10 million plus viewers on a Saturday night, the new series has seen viewing figures dip to as low as 5 million – lower than some of The Voice UK’s ratings when it aired earlier in the year.
With The Voice now on track to become the UK’s biggest singing competition, RadioTimes.com asked Murs at the launch of The Voice UK what he makes of the show challenging its counterpart.
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“It’s a tough question,” he replied. “They’re just different shows. We do blind auditions. We’re coaches, they’re judges. We do blind auditions they do open auditions. They speak to the contestants, we don’t. We do the battle rounds, they don’t. We’re just very different.”
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However, it’s clear to see from Murs’ love of the show that he’s clearly in The Voice UK camp now, having joined the show as a coach last year.
“I made no secret about wanting to do it again,” he added. “I had loads of offers of different things. But The Voice was always the one that I wanted. I love the show very much. It’s fantastic and it’s great to be here.”
And it’s Murs’ close friendship with fellow coaches Will.I.Am, Jennifer Hudson and Tom Jones that makes his time on The Voice UK so special to him.
“If they weren’t there I wouldn’t be doing it,” he said. “I just love the vibe we’ve got. It’s a weird, exciting chemistry that we have. I wanted to keep that.’
The Voice UK returns to ITV next year