Belfast Telegraph

X Factor reject Andrea Magee: I was given less airtime because I refused to open up about my personal life

By Maureen Coleman

X Factor reject Andrea Magee says she won't let her disappointing experience on the prime-time talent show distract her from her plans of pursuing a career as a singer-songwriter.

And the Glengormley girl, who now lives in Kent, is even considering moving home to further her dreams, after winning huge support from the Northern Irish public.

The 28-year-old former music teacher was one of six contenders in the Over 25s category whisked off to LA to perform at the home of returning judge Sharon Osbourne. But on Saturday night, viewers saw Andrea fail to make it through to the live shows after her performance hit the wrong note with Sharon and guest judge Robbie Williams.

While singing her own version of Radiohead's High and Dry, Andrea missed the last note, prompting Robbie to joke to Sharon: "Two of your dogs passed out on that note, I saw them."

Speaking after the weekend's double shows, which saw all 12 finalists selected, Andrea said she had been disappointed at the way in which the programmes had been edited.

She said she felt her on-screen time had been limited and had not allowed her to connect with the viewers as much as she would have liked.

But she said she was "grateful" for the platform X Factor had provided and that she now wanted to concentrate on making her own music.

"Watching the show back was difficult," she said. "I'm disappointed that I didn't make the final 12 but if I'm really honest, the real disappointment was the editing. I don't think people got a chance to connect with me at any point throughout the whole show and it was a shame that the focus was on that last part but that is just something I will have to deal with.

"The X Factor was a platform I hope to use and, regardless of what happened, people now know a little bit more about me. It's sad that the last thing they saw was something quite negative but I am focused and determined and I have a lot more behind me than that one cracked note."

Andrea said she had been encouraged by the show's producers to talk openly about her personal life but that she wanted her music to do the talking instead.

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"The X Factor has a way of manipulating an audience emotionally about certain contestants," she said.

"Some people got a real back story and got to sing three or four songs up to this point and that definitely had an impact on viewers. When totalled up, I probably didn't even get two minutes and I am a personable person. I get on well with people yet none of my interactions were shown on camera.

"One thing I was certain about was that I was not going to have any other story than my music. Maybe that went against me. On a couple of occasions they tried to push me and I pointed out that everybody has ups and downs in their lives. I just wasn't prepared to share all that. I prefer to keep that stuff for my family and friends and share my music with the public.

"The producers know what they want to do and unfortunately the television side of it definitely comes across stronger than the music. But at the end of the day I gave them a reason, it was an easy choice for them as my voice did crack."

Despite her frustration at how the show was edited, Andrea said she had no regrets.

"I'm not bitter at all and I am grateful for the fact that people now know a little bit more about my music," she said.

"I don't regret doing the show. It opened my eyes and answered a lot of questions for me. And even though I was only shown a little bit, I have a lot of support behind me now.

"It was a great experience and I'm grateful for the exposure it has given me."

Andrea has already written a lot of material for a debut album, which she is self-funding. And she hopes to gig a lot more in the future, particularly at home.

"The fact that Northern Ireland got behind me so much has made me so proud and has actually made me want to come home," she said.

Belfast Telegraph


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