Sunday 4 December 2016

Cilla Black's great-nephew loses in head-to-head battle in The Voice

Published 27/02/2016 | 00:06

The Voice coaches will.i.am, Boy George and Paloma Faith
The Voice coaches will.i.am, Boy George and Paloma Faith

The great-nephew of Cilla Black is out of The Voice after failing to progress from the battle rounds of the BBC One singing competition.

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Tobias Robertson, from Newport, lost his head-to-head battle with Stirling's Laura Begley following their rendition of Joy Division's Love Will Tear Us Apart.

When coach Boy George selected Begley as his battles rounds victor, fellow panellists Ricky Wilson, will.i.am and Paloma Faith had an opportunity to "steal" losing singer Robertson for their respective teams by hitting the buzzer. But no-one chose to do so.

"I don't think he'll give someone a run for their money on my team," said Wilson as Boy George tried to persuade the coaches to save the Welshman.

Robertson was gracious in defeat. "I've had an amazing time," he said.

"The standard's so high that there's some brilliant people going home," Faith stated as Robertson departed.

The Newport singer/songwriter only met his famous relative once - and that was at the funeral of his grandfather, Black's brother George, in 2010.

A dramatic night saw The Voice's famous red chairs spin into the battles rounds for the first time in the show's history.

Since the talent show's debut in 2012, the coaches have only turned in their chairs during the blind auditions stage.

Long regarded as the show's unique selling point, the four coaches - who are seated facing the studio audience - pick singers for their team based solely on the voice they hear.

When a coach hits the buzzer, their chair spins around in the direction of the auditioning act.

The format has been tweaked to prolong the chair-spinning element for the battles rounds' "steal" segment which sees defeated acts change mentors.

If more than one coach buzzes for a losing act, the singer has to decide which team they would like to join. But each coach is allowed only two "steals" each.

Saturday's two-hour instalment also featured returning contestant Jordan Gray.

The transgender singer, from Essex, was given a second chance because Londoner JJ Soulx left the show for "personal reasons".

Gray's duet with Londoner Theo Llewellyn moved the panel, with Faith wiping her eyes several times during their performance of This Woman's Work by Kate Bush.

Faith decided to take Gray through to the knockout stage but Llewellyn will join her after will.i.am chose to steal.

Derby's Dwaine Hayden is into the knockouts after coach Faith preferred his battle with Aliesha Lobuczek, but the Birmingham student has also progressed after Wilson hit his buzzer.

Faith picked Hartlepool's Rick Snowdon over Bradley Waterman, but Boy George saved the Norwich builder with a steal.

US artist will.i.am judged Bradford's Faheem the victor over Aaron Hill, but the Londoner had to choose between Faith and Wilson after both coaches decided to steal him.

Hill will be in the knockouts on Faith's team.

The Culture Club singer was moved to tears when teenagers Cody Frost and Heather Cameron-Hayes sang Sinead O'Connor's Nothing Compares 2 U.

Although Boy George opted for Frost, Cameron-Hayes is now a member of Faith's team.

Kaiser Chiefs frontman Wilson was visibly moved during the battle between teenager Chloe Castro and bouncer Alaric Green.

Their version of Hope There's Someone by Antony And The Johnsons resulted in Wilson picking Castro as the winner, but Green remains in the competition on Boy George's team following a steal.

The other singers who have made it to the next stage are: Charley Blue, Harry Fisher, Brooklynne Richards, Jolan and former X Factor star Lydia Lucy.

At the end of the first instalment of the battles, Wilson and will.i.am each have one steal left.

:: The Voice continues on BBC One next week.

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