The Scoop

Brendan Murray makes it through the first round of The X Factor UK

Ireland’s representative at the Eurovision Song Contest 2017, Brendan Murray, will perform in front of the judging panel on The X Factor in the United Kingdom tonight. Hoping to wow Simon Cowell, Louis Tomlinson, Ayda Field and Robbie Williams, the young Irish singer will audition for the first time in his bid to become the champion of this year’s series.

Following in the footsteps of Slavko Kalezić?

Whilst Andy Abraham and Saara Aalto have previously taken part in the UK edition of The X Factor before heading to Eurovision, only Montenegrin artist Slavko Kalezić participated in the reality competition series after representing his nation on the Eurovision stage.

Andy Abraham was the runner-up in The X Factor in 2005 and had his début album reach number 2 on the UK Albums Chart. In 2008, he represented the United Kingdom at the Eurovision Song Contest in Belgrade with the song “Even If”. He finished in 25th place with 14 points, becoming only the second UK act to finish in last place.

Saara Aalto was also a runner-up on The X Factor! She took part in 2016 and went on to win the penultimate two live shows before the final, receiving widespread acclaim for her versions of “The Winner Takes It All” by ABBA and “Chandelier” by Sia, a reprisal of her exceptional audition to the judging panel.

Brendan Murray isn’t the only Eurovision related act participating in this year’s UK edition of The X Factor. We previously reported that Gaia Cauchi, the winner of the Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2013 for Malta with the song “The Start” will also audition for the judging panel. Popera (pop-opera) singer Cezar who represented Romania at the Eurovision Song Contest 2013 with the song “It’s My Life” will also sing in front of the judges. Eagle-eyed viewers may have spotted both Gaia and Cezar in montages during the first episode of the series on Saturday, 1st September.

Brendan is Dying to Try better than at Eurovision

At the Eurovision Song Contest 2017, Brendan Murray failed to qualify from the second semi-final. His Irish entry, “Dying to Try”, written by prolific and world-famous Swedish songwriter Jörgen Elofsson, finished in 13th place with 86 points.

Brendan Murray works hard to earn his place in the next round of the competition

Arriving on The X Factor stage, Brendan explained to the four judges that he had a chance at a music career aged 16 as part of a boyband (called HomeTown). After Robbie Williams asks what went wrong, and he describes a lack of success after a third single, Brendan said: ”recently now, I took up work as a plumber”.

After initially auditioning with his version of the Ella Eyre arrangement of “We Don’t Have to Take Our Clothes Off” which was met with a lukewarm response from the judging panel who didn’t believe it suited his voice, Simon Cowell asked Brendan Murray to step backstage and to go away to a learn a new song which the panel thought would be appropriate for his vocal capabilities.

Simon advised Brendan to sing the Kate Bush classic “This Woman’s Work” and Louis Tomlinson was seen giving him a further pep talk before he later came back to the stage, nervous to impress the judges on his second chance. However, after two false starts in which Brendan forgot the lyrics to the song, Simon asked him to sing the lyrics from the sheet he wrote them on.

Once Brendan had the lyrics in front of him, he was able to shine in his interpretation of the song, impressing all four judges and receiving four yeses, sending him through to the next round of the competition.

You can watch the full performance of his second audition, “This Woman’s Work” below:

Will you be supporting Brendan Murray on The X Factor this autumn? What would you like to see him sing next in the competition? How far do you think he can go? Let us know in the comments below or on social media @ESCXTRA!

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