He was the first person ever to win Britain’s Got Talent and 12 years after he first impressed the star judges and won the hearts of the British public, Paul Potts has returned to the stage that made him a household name. Paul is a contestant on the new season of Britain’s Got Talent: The Champions and appeared on the show on Saturday evening in the UK with an incredible opera performance.
The spin-off shows sees some of the best acts who have appeared on the show since its debut in 2007 battle it out for a chance to become the ultimate champion. An American version of the series aired earlier this year which saw Paul compete against the likes of Susan Boyle and other big names from around the globe. Similar to his very first audition all those years ago, the 48-year-old hit all the right nights and got the audience and star judges including Amanda Holden, Simon Cowell, Alesha Dixon and David Walliams excited.
A number of other performers and musicians joined Paul on stage and it was a television moment that also captivated viewers at home. The four judges gave the singer a standing ovation following his performance, while members of the audience burst into applause.
Judge David described Paul’s journey as “the perfect story” because he’s just a regular man with an extraordinary talent.
“It took this show for you to share that with the world,” he told the singer. “Now wouldn’t it be the most perfect thing if you didn’t just win 12 years ago, but you won Champions as well?”
Alesha asked Paul if performing on the Britain’s Got Talent stage again felt like coming home, before she told him he “belonged on that stage”. Paul admitted that it still felt as nerve-wracking as it did more than a decade ago and described his nerves as “horrible”.
“One of the things I love about you is your humility,” Alesha added. “When I think of Britain’s Got Talent, I always think of you. It began with you.”
Amanda, who was on the judging panel when Paul won the first series, said that Paul had “massive success” since winning the show and that the only thing that changed about the singer was his teeth. Of course, fans will recall Paul became as known for his wonky teeth as he did for his singing ability.
Meanwhile, Simon told the singer he thought he started shaky but that he picked things up about half way through his performance. He said: “You hit the big note when it mattered.”
Simon added: “What I admire about you is you didn’t need to be here tonight and it’s the fact that you care is why you are a champion and always will be a champion in my opinion.”
Despite an incredible performance and praise from the judges, it wasn’t enough for Paul to earn a Golden Buzzer or spot in the grand final. Heartbroken fans vented their frustration on social media, with one person on Facebook writing: “Was gutted for Paul. ..such a lovely bloke and great voice deserved better…winner in my eyes still.”
Another comment read: “He should have been the winner in my eyes because he is such an amazing singer,” while a third added: “Such an amazing talent! I bought his CD. To think that it might never have been discovered if not for BGT. Wow!”
Paul was a phone salesman from Kingswood in Gloucestershire when he first auditioned for Britain’s Got Talent. His story was even turned into the 2013 film called One Chance and he’s gone on to tour the world and sell millions of records.