Saara Aalto has defied the odds and won a place in the semi finals of the X Factor UK. After a shaky start in the competition, Saara won the hearts of the judges and public alike with her quirkiness and impressive vocal abilities.
Saara’s X-Factor journey has been a rollercoaster ride. During her audition she wowed the judges with a rendition of Chandelier by Sia. American judge Nicole Scherzinger praised Aalto’s her performance saying “That was so good you make me want to twerk”. However, this changed during the Six Chair Challenge when she failed to impress judge Sharon Osbourne (mentor for the over 25s). This caused her to lose out on a place in the next round.
Saara was handed a lifeline by Scherzinger who awarded Saara a Wild Card. This meant that she got another chance to impress Osbourne at the third stage of the competition, Judges Houses.
During the live shows, despite displaying some excellent vocal abilities Aalto was in the bottom two weeks consecutively. Furthermore this meant that she had to compete in the sing off for her right to stay in the competition.
Things took a positive turn in week 3 of the competition. Saara performed a rendition of Bjork’s Oh So Quiet which earned her a standing ovation from all four judges. She went through to the following week by the public’s vote.
During the movie themed weekend (Week 5), Saara performed Celine Dion’s classic song My Heart Will Go On from the film Titanic. For this performance she received a standing ovation from all four judges. Unfortunately she failed to impress the British public. Saara was placed in the bottom two for the third time in the series and had to compete in the dreaded sing off against girl group Four of diamonds. Luckily for Saara, the judges opted to send the girl group home and Saara was safe for another week.
This weekend, the contestants had the opportunity to sing two songs. The first song was selected from the ‘Louis loves’ category and the second song was the contestants own choice. Saara sang ABBA’s famous love ballad The Winner Takes It All as her first song. Creating her own version of the song whilst playing the piano, she received high praise from all four judges. Her second song was a medley of Shirley Bassey’s Diamonds Are Forever and Maralyn Monroe’s Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend. Again, she received praise from the judges however, she also received critique that the performance was ‘cheesy’ and all judges agreed that although both performances were good, the first performance was far superior.
If Saara makes it through the next round she will be guaranteed a place in the X-Factor final which is broadcast from Wembley Arena (SSE Arena) in London. Tickets for the final can be applied for free through applause store UK.
Do you want to see Saara Aalto perform live?
Last week Saara Aalto was confirmed as one of the acts participating in the X Factor live tour. It kicks off in Nottingham on 23rd February and will travel to across the UK. The full list of tour venues and dates can be found on the ITV website. Tickets are already available to purchase.
You can see both of Saara’s performances from this weekend below. Which one was your favourite?