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Simon Cowell’s ‘The Midas Touch’ auditions reportedly see low turnout, hampers efforts to create the next ‘One Direction’

Simon Cowell’s ambitious project to discover the next global boyband, akin to the success of One Direction, faced a significant setback as only a sparse number of hopefuls appeared for the auditions of his new Netflix show, “The Midas Touch.” The much-anticipated auditions, held at Liverpool’s iconic Albert Dock, attracted fewer participants than expected, casting doubt on the show’s potential to replicate the magic of Cowell’s earlier successes.


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The auditions, which began on Saturday and continued through Sunday, saw a meager turnout despite the extensive preparations made by the organizers. Witnesses reported that the number of participants never exceeded 40 at any given time, a stark contrast to the massive crowds drawn by Cowell’s previous ventures, such as ‘The X Factor.’ “They started arriving slowly from about 9 am on Saturday, but the queue never amounted to more than about 40,” said one observer. “By early afternoon, the number arriving had virtually dried up, and it was the same story on Sunday.”

Photo Credit: Andy Kelvin
Photo Credit: Andy Kelvin

The Albert Dock venue was equipped with long rows of railings, indicating expectations of hundreds or even thousands of aspiring pop stars. However, the reality fell far short, raising questions about the current appeal of talent shows and Cowell’s influence in the music industry. This tepid response marks a significant departure from the frenzy witnessed during the heyday of ‘The X Factor,’ where auditions often drew thousands of eager participants.

‘The Midas Touch’ is set to be released on Netflix, and aims to create a new boyband sensation, following in the footsteps of One Direction, the globally successful group formed on ‘The X Factor’ in 2010. Despite the low turnout in Liverpool, auditions are scheduled to continue, with upcoming dates in Dublin later this month and three more sessions in London at the start of August. The initial auditions were supposed to commence in Newcastle, but those dates were abruptly canceled, with organizers citing issues with the ‘travel schedule.’

The poor turnout at the Liverpool auditions raises several concerns about the future of the show and its ability to draw and cultivate talent. It also reflects a broader trend in the entertainment industry, where traditional talent shows are struggling to maintain their former glory in the face of evolving media consumption habits and the rise of digital platforms.

As Simon Cowell, now 64, attempts to recreate the magic formula that propelled One Direction to international stardom, the challenges he faces are evident. The music mogul’s reputation for discovering and nurturing talent is unparalleled, but the lukewarm response to ‘The Midas Touch’ auditions underscores the shifting landscape of the entertainment industry.

The forthcoming audition dates in Dublin and London will be crucial in determining whether ‘The Midas Touch’ can gain the momentum needed to succeed. For now, the sparse turnout in Liverpool serves as a cautionary tale about the unpredictability of audience engagement and the evolving dynamics of the music and entertainment sectors.


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