Ugandan dance troupe Ghetto Kids missed out on the top three slots at the last stage of Britain’s Got Talent competition on Sunday, thanking fans for their “unwavering support through out the competition”.
The group of six children are aged between six and 13, and came from impoverished backgrounds in Uganda’s capital Kampala before being taken in and cared for by their guardian-turned-manager Dauda Kavuma.
Ghetto Kids was among the 10 finalists in the competition – which was won by Viggo Venn, a 33-year-old comedian from Norway. The second place was taken by 13-year-old dancer Lilliana Clifton while magician Cillian O’Connor, 14, came third.
Tonight’s first act Ghetto Kids pledged to scoop the £250,000 cash prize and use the money to build a home in Uganda for ‘kids like them’.
Priscila, 12, Asharif, 12, Akram, 13, Shakib, 12, Madwanah, 13 and Josephine, five, showed off their moves to a medley of upbeat songs.
The dance troupe were judge Bruno Tonioli’s golden buzzer choice, with the friends performing a routine to a medley of songs including Africa by Toto.
They shared a flag of their country during the performance, which ended with a shower of golden glitter. Tonioli said: ‘Seeing you makes me feel happy to be alive… you really are the pride of Africa.’
Alesha said: ‘I can’t put it into words how much joy you have brought us this year – You’ve done Uganda proud.’
Head judge Simon Cowell asked the ‘joyous’ group to come back every single year, adding: ‘This isn’t easy, you’ve got a few days to prepare something, in terms of personality, talent, everything worked… for me by a mile this was your best performance.’
The Ugandan group already made history after becoming the first act to be given a “golden buzzer” by one of the judges before they had even finished their performance – which sent them straight to the semi-final.
They then received the most public votes, giving them a place at the final alongside nine other contestants.
It has added to the group’s already considerable fame – the Ghetto Kids already had millions of YouTube views under their belts before joining the UK talent show, and featured in a music video for US-Moroccan rap star French Montana in 2017.
How it went
The Norwegian comedian was the shock winner of this year’s series, beating dancer Lilliana Clifton, 13, and 14-year-old magician Cillian O’Connor to receive the £250,000 cash prize.
Winner Viggo has built up a loyal fanbase since first appearing on Britain’s Got Talent this year. Prior to winning the show on Sunday, the funnyman took to the streets of London to meet his devotees.
The performer took time to meet members of the audience who turned out to watch the live final on Sunday, signing autographs and having his picture taken with fans.
He had the judges in fits of laughter when he forced Simon Cowell to wear a matching high-vis jacket as rose petals were thrown over the pair before the whole audience erupted into high-vis.
The audience were in raptures after the performance, chanting: ‘One more time’, in reference to his first audition on the show where he danced to Daft Punk’s hit.
Judge Alesha Dixon said: ‘You’ve captivated the nation, they love you,’ while Bruno Tonioli said: ‘I think your physical comedy is world-class, you have created one of the most memorable characters since Mr Bean.’
Cowell said: ‘At least you didn’t make me look stupid tonight. I have never ever met an act like you in my life, I will admit it, I really really love you now.’
When host Declan Donnelly asked why so many high-vis jackets, Venn said: ‘I wear so many high-vis because it’s really cold in Norway.’
After winning the show, Dec asked how he felt to have ‘captured the heart of the nation’, to which he said: ‘Not just the heart of Britain, but the heart of Simon.’
However, while many took to social media to praise Viggo for his win, some criticised him online, while the live studio audience booed him on the show after dancer Lilliana Clifton, 13, and 14-year-old magician Cillian O’Connor placed in second and third respectively.
Winner Viggo caused controversy with the live audience during the Britain’s Got Talent final as he was booed by the crowd. However, he seemed unperturbed, insisting he had caught ‘not just the heart of Britain but the heart of Simon’.
The final minutes of the show made a tense watch. Hosts Ant and Dec announced the final three in no particular order: Lillianna Clifton, Cillian O’Connor and Viggo Venn. Cillian was voted out in third place, saying when the news was announced: ‘Thank you everyone. It’s been an incredible journey.’
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