X Factor hopeful Ella Henderson almost missed her chance at fame because her audition clashed with her GCSEs.
The 16-year-old singer eventually made it to an audition and performed one of her own tracks impressing the judges with her singing and songwriting skills.
She said: "I think on the day I definitely had a bit of paranoia like 'Should I or shouldn't I sing my original song?'
"It was debatable and I thought 'You know what? You only get one shot to stand there and sing a song you want to sing' so I thought 'Just do your original song, be you' and I just wanted to be myself and show everyone this is who I am and see what kind of response I'd get for that".
The teenager from Tetney in Lincolnshire said the pressure of juggling schoolwork with the hit ITV talent show actually had a positive effect.
She said: "It was a struggle because the first time I got called to my big, live audition I couldn't attend that one because I was doing an exam on the day so I was like 'No, I need to do my GCSEs'.
"But I think it's actually driven me to work harder because I thought if I want the best of both worlds I've just got to get my head down and do it and now my GCSEs are done and I'm sat here waiting for results now so I'll see how they come out and have this on the side. It's all really exciting".
Ella, who watched the show on Saturday night with her family and friends, said she would "keep going" with her own songs as well as singing the usual cover versions contestants perform in the show.
She said: "I started writing from the age of 12 or 13. Some of my first songs, I would probably never ever bring them out of my books because they are a bit corny and cheesy.
"I'm always songwriting at home on the piano, I'm excited to maybe do some covers along the way as well. I'd never just cast that to one side, I want to bring something new to them and twist them round and make them sound different."Suggest a correction