The X Factor
airs in the United Kingdom on itv, each year the show auditions musical hopefuls from across the country, as they hope to progress to through the stages of the competition to be crowned the winner of the series. If they win, they earn a record deal through show creator Simon Cowell's record label.
The auditions take place and are judged by a panel who decide whether the act will progress to the next stage of the competition. The successful acts then audition again this time in an arena. The judges then find out which category of singers they will be mentoring for the series - Groups, Boys, Girls and Over 25s. The judges then have to decide on six contestants to progress through to the next stage of the competition. To do this a 'Six Chair Challenge' round is used, in which each successful auditionee performs hoping to win one of the six chairs each judge has to offer them. None of the seats necessarily mean that a performer is ever safe, as a judge can opt to switch contestants around whilst this stage of the competition plays out. The successful six acts then join the judges at the Judges Houses round of the competition. Here, the judge is joined by guest mentor(s) from the world of music, who help them to decide which acts to take through to the live stages of the competition. The show then goes live every weekend and each week the two acts with the lowest amount of public votes have to sing again in a final showdown after which the judges decide who should be eliminated. Once there are only five acts left remaining it becomes left to the public to decide who should go.
originally hosted the show for the first three years, but she was replaced by Dermot O'Leary
when the fourth series began in 2007. The panel of judges has often changed as well. The show originally had three judges Simon Cowell
, Sharon Osbourne
and Louis Walsh.
For the fourth series a additional judge was added, with Dannii Minogue
joining the panel. Sharon left the show after the fourth series, she was replaced by Cheryl Cole
. The panel went through a revamp in the shows eighth series, with Louis Walsh left as the only remaining judge, he was joined by new head judge Gary Barlow
, Kelly Rowland
and Tulisa Contostavlos
. Kelly only remained on the show for one series, with Nicole Scherzinger
replacing her in the ninth series. Tulisa left the panel at the end of series nine, making way for the return of original judge Sharon Osbourne, who returned to be part of the shows tenth anniversary. For the eleventh series in 2014, Gary, Nicole and Sharon have been replaced by original judge Simon Cowell, returning judge Cheryl Cole and new judge Mel B
. Louis Walsh is the only judge to have remained on the panel since the start of the show.
Series one was won by Steve Brookstein
while series two was won by Shayne Ward.
The third series was won by Leona Lewis
making her the first female winner of the show. In the fourth series, Leon Jackson
was crowned the series winner. The series returned in 2008 for a fifth series, which was won by Alexandra Burke
. The sixth series in 2009 was won by Joe McElderry
. Matt Cardle
won the show's seventh series in 2010. Girl-band Little Mix
won the eighth series in 2011. In 2012 James Arthur
won the show's ninth series. The winner of the show's tenth series in 2013, was Sam Bailey