The X Factor competition is about to get brutal as Sharon Osbourne picks only six singers to stay in the contest.
Sunday night’s Six Chair Challenge will see her single-handedly judge all the remaining entries in the Girls category – a group she made clear on Saturday that she did not want to be in charge of.
There will be tears from the performers, the audience and even the panel member herself as the competition reaches its most tense level yet. The winners will earn a spot in the next round of the ITV contest, held in the judges’ own houses.
Among the first round of hopefuls is 21-year-old Hayley Norton, performing solo after splitting from her mother during bootcamp. The pair had entered the competition as a duo, but judge Simon Cowell insisted that Hayley was the stronger singer and said he would only be prepared to offer her a place alone.
One of the youngest entries, 16-year-old student Rai-Elle, is next with a brave a cappella rendition of Simon & Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water. When Osbourne points out that it is a “big song for a little one”, she responds confidently: “That’s why I chose it”.
Also 16, Holly Tandy returns to the stage in her continuing ambition to make her musician grandfather proud, and delivers her own spin on Lady Gaga’s Edge Of Glory.
Next up is Scottish pub singer, Nicole Caldwell, who made it through to the challenge after convincing all judges but Osbourne of her talents.
Her last round saw the 27-year-old’s confidence struggle under the pressure of the mounting competition, and Osbourne told her to “get a grip”.
Other performers on Sunday include Blackburn warehouse assistant Grace Davies, who will bring another original song, Do It Better, to the stage.
Viewers will also see Alisah Bonaobra step onto the stage in a glamorous red ballgown to stake her claim in the competition with Celine Dion classic, All By Myself.
She was almost kicked out of the competition during bootcamp, but the judges agreed to give her a second chance after she broke down and begged for another shot.
Preparing to give it her all for another week, she vows to “fight” for her chance to change the lives of her whole family, who flew from their Manila home in the Philippines to support her through the contest.
The X Factor continues on ITV at 7.30pm on Sunday.