Olly Murs (born May 1984) is from Witham, Essex, England. He attended Notley High School where he was a star centre forward in the school's football (soccer) team. He also played semi-professionally for Witham Town. He works as an energy advisor in a call centre. He has previously appeared on the TV show Deal or No Deal.
He performed "Superstition" by Stevie Wonder in his first audition and Cowell said it was "the easiest yes I have ever given". On the first live show he sang Robbie Williams' "She's the One" and on the second, Tina Turner's "Fool in Love," a performance which Cowell described as being "in a different league." For week three he took on "Bewitched" by Steve Lawrence. Walsh commented that he was the "dark horse of the competition," and Cole said he was "coming into his own each week." He has frequently employed dance moves in his performance including his trademark "Olly wiggle." In Week 4 he sang "Come Together" by The Beatles and again received positive comments, with Walsh predicting, "I think you're in the final three," and Cowell saying he was "progressing better than just about everybody."
He was in the bottom two in week 7 with John & Edward but was saved when Minogue, Cole and Cowell decided to send John & Edward home. In the semi-finals Murs had to miss the wedding of his brother. The ceremony took place just 16 miles from the show's studio, but Cowell, his mentor, had great reservations about letting him off for a few hours on this crucial semi-final day. He sang The Jacksons' "Can You Feel It" and the John Lennon/Paul McCartney composition We Can Work It Out in the semi-final and ended up as one of the three finalists. In the final on 12 December 2009, he reperformed his audition song, Stevie Wonder's "Supersition", following which Simon said putting him in the Final 12 was "the best risk I have ever taken in my life," and sang with Robbie Williams on a duet of Angels. But Williams fluffed his lines as he walked on stage to join Murs and appeared to have missed his cue and came in at the wrong time, singing the second line of the song, before being helped by Olly to find the right spot. There was then a repeat performance of his Week 2 song "Fool in Love." Olly Murs lost the final to Joe McElderry on December 13, 2009.
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