Belfast Telegraph

Gary Barlow's Let It Shine kicks off in battle against The Voice

Take That star Gary Barlow's search for the cast of a new musical has kicked off, clashing with the BBC's former Saturday night star The Voice, which has switched to ITV.

Let It Shine is new to BBC One and goes up against The Voice, which is scheduled for an overlapping time and also aired for the first time on Saturday night.

As The Voice began on ITV during Barlow's show, some viewers admitted they would be turning over.

Viewer Harry Maxwell tweeted: "Switching over to The Voice... You could say Let It Shine set the Bar-low. #letitshine"

But another Twitter user, Jack Anderson, wrote: "Let it shine is so much better than the X factor or the voice."

Former Take That star Robbie Williams tweeted his support: "I know what I'm watching this eve .BBC 7 o'clock .Let it shine .GOOOARRNNN Lads xxxx"

The Let It Shine episode started with Barlow performing an opening number in which he sang about searching for fame and appeared to be nude for one scene of the dance where he pretended to be in the shower.

For the first round of auditions, Barlow, Dannii Minogue and Martin Kemp were joined by former Glee actress Amber Riley, who is now starring in the West End stage show of Dreamgirls, as a guest judge.

Each judge could award up to five points and two of the hopefuls - Nicky Price, 17 and Jason Brock, 30 - earned a full 20 points on their way through to the next round.

The programme featured two other members of Take That, Mark Owen and Howard Donald, who chatted to the auditionees backstage.

Owen said to one nervous contestant who had never held a microphone: "We had one mic, Gary had the one that worked, and we had plastic ones.

"We used to pass it round for certain songs, we built it into our dance routines."

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