The Verse’s Gemma Turner tells us what she thought of The X Factor Live tour at Brighton Centre on 4th March 2018.
The TV show may have ended last year with lower ratings, but for many, the true finale only comes with the live tour, and 2018 was no exception.
The X Factor tour has become regular for the newly revamped Brighton Centre, and its popularity hasn’t faded. A sea of flashing headbands and banners were waiting for the finalists to take the stage.
First on stage was Kevin Davy White, armed with pyrotechnics and even a flaming electric guitar; no expense was spared. Kevin’s gravelly vocals and rock persona very quickly got the audience pumped.
To follow this was a graceful entrance from runner-up Grace Davies, arriving on to the stage from a lowered platform – whilst sitting at her grand piano which was wrapped in tiny lights, resembling the night sky.
X Factor clearly knows how to please their audience, but it’s thankfully evolved over the years, bringing an original element from the contestants with instruments and allowing them to perform original songs. Grace’s flawless piano notes and vocal combo and Kevin’s effortless guitar chords are a true sign of just how far this talent contest has come.
Unsurprisingly, Lloyd Macey won the hearts of everyone in the audience. With renditions of Lay Me Down, and La La Land’s City of Stars (where he asked everyone to light up the room with the flashes on their phone, creating a sea of stars).
A flawless performance from Scottish siblings ‘The Cultkelvins’, who joined Grace on stage for a new version of You Got To Show Me Love.
And then Rak–Su hit the stage. There is no doubt that these lads from Watford are here to stay. The audience were up on their feet and singing their original songs back to them. They were true entertainers, engaging the audience, and even having a ‘beat-box-off’ against the crowd, with Mustafa flexing his skills. Rak-Su have just been confirmed to be supporting Little Mix on their Summer Hits tour, and it’s no surprise.
Unlike some of the other performers, who will no doubt slip away quietly after the tour is over – Grace is only just getting started. Her duet with Kevin of Live and Let Die is already arena-worthy; it was a show-stopper.
While Rak-Su were obviously a big hit, it was also performances that brought all the acts together that proved a real highlight of the show.
Their rendition of Little Mix’s Reggaeton Lenton and Justin Timberlake’s Can’t Stop The Feeling gave each of the acts an opportunity to shine. With a sea of confetti covering the crowd, everyone was up dancing, including the host of the night Becca Dudley.
With Becca’s help, the audience had the job of selecting an overall winner at the end of the evening – judged by the loudness of screams. Rak-Su were obvious winners, Grace came in third place, and a surprise to the other contestants was Lloyd who came in second (Kevin is usually a firm runner-up).
Brighton was the final stop for the X Factor tour, and there were some real emotions on display (Grace shed a few tears). But what really resonated was the gratitude of each contestant, being given the opportunity to fulfil their dreams.
There is no doubt it The X Factor Live Tour will be back with another set of fantastic finalists next year.
Here’s what Frejya, aged 11, had to say:
“I love the X Factor shows as it shows ordinary people that you can achieve your dream. I loved that tonight’s show gave us a chance to vote and sing along to our favourite songs. The stage was awesome! Grace inspires me!”