The X Factor returned on Wednesday night as the Top 12 singers performed hits by such legendary Divas as Mariah Carey, Donna Summer, and Tina Turner.
This week the stage theatrics and production were scaled back for a Diva themed show in which song choice played a key role as the remaining singers gave some of the best performances of the season. Singers like Tate Stevens, Diamond White, and Carly Rose Sonenclar maintained their pace as front-runners while others like Vino Alan, Arin Ray, and CeCe Frey had a lot on the line.
Were last week’s Top 5 able to maintain their momentum? Would a new face take the lead?
Here’s how it all went down:
Jennel Garcia started off the show with Tina Turner’s “Proud Mary” and her returned to sexy rocker couldn’t have come at a better time. The judges FINALLY gave Jennel great feedback, with Simon even saying that she was back in the game. We’re glad Jennel regained her confidence. It definitely came across in her performance.
Tate Stevens hit The X Factor stage next for Shania Twain’s “You’re Still the One”. Swoon! Stevens dedicated the song to his wife and sounded every bit like a true country star. With the most votes last week, Tate could regain the top spot on Thursday night after such an amazing performance. With his wife watching from backstage, Stevens choked up at the end the song. Sigh! Tate can sing to us forever.
Last week Diamond White was in the Top 4 after returning from elimination. Diamond made the most of her new-found momentum this week on Beyonce’s “Halo”. Although she started a little shaky, Diamond later proved she could hit the big notes at the right time. After her performance, Diamond admitted that her alter ego took over to help nail the performance. Keep it coming Diamond!
Beatrice Miller got mixed reviews from the judges for her performance of Cyndi Lauper’s “Time After Time”. It was an odd song choice for the young talent. Not bad but not great either. There’s something about Beatrice’s voice that seems to confuse Britney in terms of how to showcase Miller’s unique vocals. We want Beatrice to do well. She’s spunky and fun but she hasn’t had that one necessary break out moment. We hate to say it but Beatrice could be up for elimination.
Lyric 145 performed another mash-up (they need to stop doing that), this time a combo of Queen’s “We Will Rock You” and Katy Perry’s “E.T.” At the start of their song, Simon revealed that the song choice was changed at midnight the previous morning. We’re not sure if it was a warning to fans, but the performance was awkward. For Britney, the group should have stuck to hip-hop. Agreed! Odds are that Lyric145 won’t go home on Thursday, but they may end up in the bottom three.
Arin Ray took a chance with Madonna’s “Crazy for You”. Although Arin dedicated the song to his boot camp flirt Normani, the judges weren’t impressed. From the judge’s table, Simon thought Arin hated the song. For Demi, it was boring. Since Arin was 11th place last week in the rankings, don’t be surprised if he’s in danger of elimination on Thursday.
Paige Thomas hit The X Factor stage with the Donna Summers hit “Last Dance” as a tribute to her mother. Prior to the performance, Demi told Paige to channel her personal experience into the song. That’s exactly what Paige did to give fans her best performance of the competition, sparkly lipstick and all.
Fifth Harmony surprised everyone last week by ranking 5th in the competition. This week, Mariah Carey’s “Hero” proved to be the group’s most ambitious song choice to date. After several weak performances, Fifth Harmony finally found their groove to stand out as a collective. This week was the most “in-harmony” the girls have been so far. And we’re not just saying that because we love puppies!
Carly Rose Sonenclar took on the huge challenge of singing Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” and killed it! The judges were blown away. Simon admitted that her control was spot on. Just hand her the $5 million and record contract!
Vino Alan tried to recapture last week’s magic with the Tina Turner hit “Let’s Stay Together” but failed to win over the judges. Although Vino started strong, Demi was bored by the end of the performance. Simon thought it was the wrong song choice to showcase Vino’s potential, especially after going from underdog to front-runner this past week.
Emblem3 hit the stage to sing Alicia Keys’ “No One” for the most surprising performance of the night. Although their rendition of the song was a great recipe of pop, reggae, and ska, it lacked energy. Still, Emblem3 were harmoniously perfect as usual. Well done fellas!
Cece Frey went into Wednesday’s performance episode with the most pressure on her shoulders after singing off against Jason Brock last week. Song choice was absolutely critical. Cece needed a big comeback but her performance of Eric Carmen’s “All By Myself” fell short. Both Britney and L.A. Reid were disappointed while Simon the performance was “cabaret” and had “too many gimmicks.” Cece was good but she really needed to be great. Was it enough?
How did you feel about this week’s performances on The X Factor?