Move over X Factor, Voice UK to 'raid' Irish talent pool with new round of open-mic nights
ITV will bring The Voice UK auditions to Ireland next year, further draining the talent pool for the Irish series.
Despite its consistently high ratings, The Voice of Ireland has been plagued by rumours that this season will be its last.
The RTE show has been criticised in the past for its failure to help launch successful music careers.
With the Voice UK moving from the BBC to ITV next year in a big money transfer, it has targeted its Irish fan base with the launch of a talent search here.
Music scouts from the UK show will visit open-mic nights across the country in an attempt to find the best Irish singers.
They will kick off as early as next Wednesday, with an open audition in Dublin’s International Bar on Wicklow Street.
Producers are opening the competition to all musical styles, including groups of singers, and entrants must be 16 by October.
It’s not the end of the road for those who think they have what it takes – applicants unable to attend the open mic nights can still apply on ITV’s website.
Clondalkin singer Lauren Lapsley-Browne impressed Voice UK bosses last year when she turned out for an open audition in Dublin.
She was later chased by show producers despite missing the next two auditions and made it on to Team Will.i.am before exiting the competition last week.
The Voice of Ireland, now in the middle of its live final run, said the UK show’s talent search here won’t affect them.
“They’ve done it before, it doesn’t bother us,” a spokesperson said. There is speculation that the Irish Voice will be replaced by Ireland’s Got Talent next year.
It's not the only round of auditions for music hopefuls this year as ITV's The X Factor will be hitting the 3Arena in Dublin for auditions on April 24.