New se­ries hopes to start on a high note

Macclesfield Express - - TVWEEK -

It may only seem two min­utes since Louisa John­son was crowned queen of The X Fac­tor in the 12th se­ries of Si­mon Cow­ell’s ail­ing Satur­day night TV jug­ger­naut. But if you’re al­ready hav­ing tal­ent-show with­drawals, fear not, as the fifth sea­son of The Voice UK be­gins tonight. It’s all change on the singing con­test (this is the fi­nal se­ries on the BBC be­fore it moves to ITV), with two new judges hav­ing been drafted in fol­low­ing Tom Jones’ de­par­ture and Rita Ora’s highly pub­li­cised de­fec­tion to The X Fac­tor last year. The ad­di­tion of Boy Ge­orge and Paloma Faith to the coach­ing line-up was ini­tially met with crit­i­cism last year, and many fans were up in arms af­ter Sir Tom took to so­cial me­dia to re­veal he hadn’t ac­tu­ally been told he was fired. How­ever, the show must go on, as they say, and for­mer Cul­ture Club star Ge­orge, 54, can’t wait to get started. “I’m thrilled and ex­cited to be a coach on The Voice UK,” the leg­endary pop icon de­clared. “I’m a huge fan of the show and have watched and en­gaged with it from se­ries one.” His new col­league, stylish mul­ti­plat­inum sell­ing singer, song­writer and ac­tress Faith, shares his op­ti­mism: “I’m really ex­cited about work­ing with cre­ative peo­ple who are there not just to be singers, but also in­no­va­tive per­son­al­i­ties and per­form­ers,” she added. The duo join Will.i.am, the long­est-serv­ing judge with ev­ery one of the pre­vi­ous se­ries un­der his belt, and Kaiser Chiefs front­man Ricky Wil­son on the spin­ning chair panel. As usual, Marvin Humes and the gor­geous Emma Wil­lis will be there to keep ev­ery­one in line, as well as con­sol­ing and con­grat­u­lat­ing the wannabe stars. The con­test kicks off tonight with the blind au­di­tions, as the coaches be­gin the process of build­ing their 12-strong teams by sit­ting with their backs to the au­di­tion­ees and turn­ing their chairs if they are im­pressed with what they hear. If more than one coach turns, the hope­ful has the chance to choose whose team they join – and the fire­works be­gin as the coaches pitch to get the best tal­ent on to their teams. In this evening’s packed episode, singers in­clude a punk fan whose twist of a pop clas­sic melts the hearts of the coaches; a blast from the past with en­ter­tainer Bernie Clifton of Oswald the Os­trich fame; and plenty of piscine puns from a fish­mon­ger with a unique voice.

On song Will.i.am, Paloma Faith, Ricky Wil­son and Boy Ge­orge

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