ENTERTAINMENT

Four Singers Reach The Voice Final

15/06/2013 22:17 BST | Updated 15/06/2013 22:27 BST
BBC

Four acts sang their way into the final of talent show The Voice tonight as half of the hopefuls were axed from the competition.

Matt Henry, Andrea Begley, Leah McFall and Mike Ward will now battle it out to be crowned the winner of next week's final after receiving the most public votes.

Tonight's semi-final ended with Ash Morgan, Karl Michael, Cleo Higgins and Joseph Apostol all learning they were going home.

Morgan's mentor Jessie J told him: "You have one of the best voices that I've heard in a long time and your going home doesn't change that."

Begley, who is visually impaired, looked delighted as she said: "All I can say is thank you so much to everyone who voted for me. For people to vote for me because of my singing is just the best feeling in the world."

The 27-year-old, from County Tyrone, wowed judges with her rendition of Joan Osborne's One Of Us, but it was for the public to decide that they liked her above mentor Danny O'Donoghue's other act, Karl Michael, 27.

Budding country singer Ward, 23, from Salford, said he was very "surprised" at getting through. "I never thought I'd have come this far," he added.

He beat coach Sir Tom Jones's other act, Apostol, 21, with the Welsh legend telling him: "I'm glad that I didn't have to make the decision tonight. It would have been a difficult one as they're both great singers and they're different from one another."

Higgins, who previously found fame in the late 1990s with girl band Cleopatra, sang a rousing version of Don't Let Go by En Vogue but lost out to will.i.am's other contestant, McFall, 23, from Belfast.

The 30-year-old, from Birmingham, said she had known she would be voted out. "I've had the best time," she said. "I knew I was going home. I'm so happy I'm leaving on a really good note."

But the Black Eyed Peas star told Higgins he would like to work with her in the future. "You really impressed me Cleo," he said. "You are an amazing artist."

Before the finalists were announced, viewers were treated to a performance by Liam Gallagher's band Beady Eye.

Earlier this week the Mancunian defended their appearance in anticipation of criticism for appearing on the pop show.

"Really looking forward to doing The Voice - it's been a lifelong ambition," he said.

"If being asked to sing live and in tune on a programme that promotes the voice is a crime then shoot me."

The five-piece performed new single Second Bite Of The Apple from their latest album BE.

Canadian singer Avril Lavigne also made an appearance on the show with her latest offering.

The final of The Voice will be on BBC1 next Saturday.