Viewers tune out for second season of 'The Voice'
THE opener of 'The Voice of Ireland' drew in 100,000 fewer viewers at the start of the second season compared to the first.
The current instalment of the RTE series has already rated less popular with audiences, as figures show an average of only 605,000 people tuning in to watch Sunday's programme.
This is compared to the opening episode in 2012, which attracted an average 708,000.
An RTE spokesperson told the Irish Independent the broadcaster was pleased with the latest numbers: "We are delighted with the viewership figures for the return of 'The Voice of Ireland'. It is above last year's series average."
Over the weekend, the first group of hopefuls took to the stage for the blind auditions to impress the coaches and claim a place in the battle stages.
Sharon Corr, Bressie and Kian Egan have all returned to the line-up, but singer Brian Kennedy has been replaced by British musician Jamelia, who casually mentioned on-screen that she is friendly with international superstar Beyonce.
The spokesperson added: "Jamelia is bringing a feisty dimension to it this year, there is great chemistry between the coaches, but as always the singers are proving to be the stars of the show."
Nine people have so far made it through, with Corr choosing Fiona McCourt, Mark Gildea and Gary Tighe; while Jamelia picked Keith Hanley, Roisin Carlin and Dylan Powell; Bressie selected Michelle Cunningham and Sinead O'Brien; and Egan backed Joey McAleer.
Contestants will continue to audition next week in a bid to reach the live rounds of the competition and secure a contract with Universal Music, previously won by last year's winner, Pat Byrne.