Geordie favourite Joe McElderry, was crowned this year's X Factor king as the talent show came to an end on Sunday after a gripping weekend final.
The 18-year old student from South Shields beat fellow contestants Olly Murs and Stacey Solomon to the title and a £1m recording contract. The show has become a national institution in recent years and student-land will be in mourning at the end of their Saturday night X Factor parties... but help is at hand.
For those suffering from withdrawal symptoms, you can see John and Edward performing at Liverpool Guild of Students (LGoS) on December 20th 2009. The X Factor Live tour will also be at the Liverpool Echo Arena for two dates in February 2010, but for now the show is over.
Saturday night’s live final saw each of the finalists perform three songs, with McElderry singing ‘Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me’ as a duet with George Michael, along with ‘Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word’ and his first audition song, ‘Dance With My Father’.
Michael Bublé performed with Solomon to sing a duet of ‘Feeling Good’, along with Solomon’s other solo performances of ‘Wonderful World’ and Queen’s ‘Who Wants To Live Forever’. Murs was joined on stage with Robbie Williams to sing Williams’s best known hit, ‘Angels’. Murs also performed ‘Fool In Love’ and Stevie Wonder’s ‘Superstition’.
Solomon was first to be voted off after Saturday night's live results were cast, leaving Murs and McElderry going head to head in Sunday's grand finale. Sunday's show was opened by the show's 12 finalists, including the infamous ‘Jedward’, singing a rendition of Take That’s ‘Never Forget’. Previous winners Leona Lewis and Alexandra Burke also took to the X Factor stage during their two-hour show to perform their new singles, with last year’s runners-up, JLS also making an appearance.
Murs was first to perform out of the two acts, singing his version of ‘Twist And Shout’. McElderry’s chosen song was ‘Don’t Stop Believing’, a more upbeat choice compared to his usual ballad style. Both acts sang their version of ‘The Climb’, which is to be released as the winner’s single.
Before results were announced during Sunday night's final, Liverpool's own Sir Paul McCartney gave a special live performance, singing classic hits, ‘Drive My Car’, with the 12 X Factor finalists, and ‘Live And Let Die’.
McElderry eventually beat Murs to the title, watched by more than 19m people with 10m votes cast. Although 'The Climb' was the strong favourite to become the Christmas Number One, a well publicised Facebook campaign to deny McElderry from getting the honour proved successful when Rage Against the Machine's 'Killing in the Name' gained the coveted top slot.
By Amy Swift, News Editor
X-Factor winner Joe McElderry; YouTube: Duet with George Michael during Saturday's live final