Once again, thousands of young pop hopefuls are preparing to lay their dignity on the line to appear under the TV microscope in yet another search for a bunch of new teen idols.
The other day the first 350 wannabes tried to convince the Popstars Rivals Panel, made up of Pete Waterman, Geri Halliwell and Westlife manager Louis Walsh, that they have what it takes to be the next teen sensation but, as the reports emerged one by one, the judges, in particular the former Spice Girl, have been painfully honest. However, this time round, the wannabes aren’t taking criticism lying down.
“The judges were honest but a bit too honest” said Yiannis Chrysanthou, 24, “Pete said to me that my voice wasn’t special enough and that I’d probably make a great living doing karaoke or working the clubs, which I actually already do. Then Geri said that I didn’t have the look they were going for. When I suggested that I was perhaps a little too individual, she said that’s what she meant. Louis Walsh, on the other hand, was more intrigued by my Greek origins and assumed I must be a George Michael fan.”However, Yiannis, who’s also hoping to land an audition for the BBC’s rival show ‘Fame Academy’, admits that what disappointed him most was Geri, who he’s adored ever since her days in the Spice Girls.
“You know, I absolutely love Geri” he confessed “I always have but meeting her today has really made me think twice about why I liked her in the first place. I mean, while she didn’t say anything too bad about me, she just didn’t come across as honest. She’s a great pop star but to tell you the truth, she’s not necessarily the best singer or the best looking girl. I wish she hadn’t decided to look for a carbon copy of what’s gone before.”
Meanwhile, Geri, who had promised earlier on that she was going to be honest yet compassionate, has been accused of making fun about a contestant’s weight. Carol Lynch, 19, who hails from Basildon, Essex, said “When I finished singing, Pete or Louis said I was a larger-than-life character. Then Geri had to say ‘yeah, very larger than life’ in a sarky way. I was all smiles and just walked out, but I couldn’t believe it.”
Carol said she refused to be disheartened by Geri’s words and that the rejection would not make her give up her quest for pop stardom.
Later, a Popstars spokesman insisted that the ‘Calling’ vocalistress was referring to Carol’s personality rather than her size when she described her as being “larger than life”. “Geri said nothing about Carol’s physical appearance”the spokesman said. “She commented that she had a larger than life personality and a huge show-stopping voice but didn’t allude to her physical appearance at all” he said.
Popstars: The Rivals will be shown over ITV1 sometime in September and will be presented by Davina McCall.