How to join the X Factor

Written by sally nash
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How to join the X Factor
Performing in front of a live audience is part of the X Factor experience. (Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images)

The X Factor TV talent show is a phenomenon. In the UK, around 200,000 fame-hungry people auditioned for series six of the programme. However, joining the X Factor as a competitor takes more than just natural singing talent. You need determination and sound organisational skills to get through the demanding application and audition process. Know the rules and read the small-print terms and conditions to improve your chances of making it through.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Fill in the application form, found online at when the programme is looking for contestants. Check regularly for updates because applications are only accepted at certain times of year. Provide all the contact details requested as well as information about your act. You can also upload a video of a performance online although this is optional.

  2. 2

    Wait for an audition letter. Auditions are held at venues in London, Manchester, Birmingham, Cardiff and Glasgow.

  3. 3

    Attend the audition and comply with the instructions. X factor staff will give you an audition number and you will have to "perform" in front of a production staff member. If you impress, you will get a "golden ticket." This means you are through to the next round where you perform in front of a more influential staff member.

  4. 4

    Perform in front of the main X Factor judges. They have the power to decide if you get to perform live on the TV show.

Tips and warnings

  • Be patient at the open auditions. If you grumble too much you might be asked to leave.
  • Prepare for the audition by practising your song/instrument so that you are word/note perfect.
  • If you miss the online deadline for applications and the open auditions, check whether you can submit an application through You Tube.
  • Only apply if you are 16 or older and have the right to reside and work in the UK.
  • Don't take rejection too personally. The show organisers are looking for people who will make good TV and are not necessarily the most talented.

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