X Factor hopefuls audition in Queenstown

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Dreams of national fame and a record deal drew more than 30 people to pre-auditions in Queenstown yesterday for television talent show The X Factor NZ.

While waiting in line outside the Queenstown Performing Arts Centre rooms, local Levi Waitere told Mountain Scene it was his second shot at fame after auditioning at the same venue early last year.

A fan of New Zealand pop bands such as Six60, Waitere says he “picked the worst song to pick” last time.

This time he had a few songs up his sleeve should the judges ask him to sing more than once.

“I’m really excited just to get in there and try it again.

“I love to sing, it’s a great way to express myself –it makes me happy.”

The resort was the second of 13 centres throughout the country to hold the pre-auditions. The second series of the TV3 show will screen next year.

Open to singers, groups and bands aged 14 or older, pre-auditions started in Auckland at the weekend and continue until November 2. They will be held at Dunedin’s Forsyth Barr Stadium today.

Those who succeed at the pre-auditions get to perform in front of the judges and a live television audience

All Saints member Melanie Blatt and New Zealand’s Stan Walker have been confirmed as judges, with two more to be announced in the coming weeks

The global television format has launched several successful music careers, including Leona Lewis and One Direction. Jackie Thomas won last year’s The X Factor NZ, with the top four contestants all signing record deals with Sony Music.