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Voice boss blasts claims of lost ratings

FURIOUS TV producer Larry Bass has blasted claims that The Voice of Ireland is suffering a massive ratings slump.

And the ShinAwil boss revealed to the Herald that negotiations are already underway for series two and three of the RTE programme.

Mr Bass was left fuming after a weekend newspaper article said that the show has been "abandoned" by viewers.

But he insisted that nothing could be further from the truth.

"If RTE weren't happy with how the show has been doing, I couldn't be in negotiations with them about doing series two and series three. They are thrilled with it," he said.

Reacting to claims that the show has had a drop of nearly 300,000 from its debut, he said the programme is continuing to perform well. Last weekend alone it was watched by nearly half a million viewers.

"Anyone can take figures and spin them. But what really annoyed me is that you can't take make comparisons with shows made at a different time of the year.

"Over the past few weeks, there have been two Bank Holiday weekends, one of which was Mothers' Day and the other was the hottest day of the year. You have to take these things into account," he continued.

"We are still pulling in roughly 40pc share of the available audience which compares well with the BBC's Voice, which is hitting around 37pc."

Week five of the popular show saw Team Kian going head-to-head with Team Sharon as the Westlife crooner kicked off the show with a performance of Xtreme's More Than Words.

After all eight acts performed for viewers, Kim Hayden (23) and Nollaig O'Connor (19) were left in the bottom two in Sharon Corr's group. In the end, she opted to send Nollaig home.

For Kian Egan, it came down to a choice between Sharon Gaynor (29) and Eliot Canavan Doyle (18). He opted to send home the Enfield teenager, explaining how he's still go "an awful lot of time to grow."

Meanwhile coaches Bressie, Kian Egan and Brian Kennedy were only too happy to lend their support to the John Giles Foundation Walk of Dreams.

The event will take place on May 7 in 20 locations across the country, and will help raise funds to develop community services.