X Factor winners – where are they now?

X Factor winners – where are they now?

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By Sandrine Tabalo,
Tuesday, 8th December 2015
X Factor, ITV, television, entertainment, Simon Cowell, One Direction, Little Mix,
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This weekend's final will see Reggie N Bollie, Che Chesterman or Louisa Johnson win the entertainment programme, but what happened to the previous winners of the show?

From a questionable rendition of The Lion Sleeps Tonight to wannabe rapping duo Ant and Seb, the X Factor has seen an array of talent over the past ten years.

With the X Factor final looming, what happened to those who made it through the gruelling auditions to win the show?


Steve Brookstein (2004)

Brookstein was the first ever winner of the X Factor and unfortunately one of the most forgotten contestants. Within nine months of winning the show his record deal with Simon Cowell ended.

A decade later he published a book, X Factor Memoir, to give his own view of the show.


Shayne Ward (2005)

The That’s My Goal singer won the show in the second series and has since released a number of albums including the self-titled Shayne Ward and Closer.

This year he put the microphone behind him and debuted on the hit ITV soap Coronation Street as Aidan Connor.

On Christmas Eve he will be seen, alongside other singers, in ITV’s The Abba Christmas Party performing one of his favourite Abba ditties in a Scandinavian Christmas Lodge.


Leona Lewis (2006)

The North London-born star won over the hearts of the nation and Take That’s Gary Barlow during series three of the competition.

Since winning the show her singles have rocketed in the charts. The all-time favourite Bleeding Love was number one for seven weeks.

Lewis has also teamed up with Swedish DJ Avicii, recorded a Christmas album and has sold over 20 million records worldwide.

She will join former contestants One Direction on the Wembley stage this weekend to perform at the X Factor final.


Leon Jackson (2007)

In contrast to Lewis, Jackson has shied away from the spotlight since winning eight years ago.

He was dropped from Simon Cowell’s record label Syco after his debut album failed to fly off the shelves.

He now lives in Los Angeles where he is writing and recording his own music.


Alexandra Burke (2008)

Her debut single Hallelujah sold over 105,000 copies in 24 hours.

She is now starring in West End musical The Bodyguard where she will be performing until June 2016.

In between her performances she took part in the Celebrity version of Channel 4’s First Dates where viewers saw her coupled up with 28 year-old model, Louis. However she has been tight-lipped about whether the pair have been seeing each other since the show aired.

She will be joining Ward in ITV’s The Abba Christmas Party this Christmas Eve.


Joe McElderry (2009)

Since winning the show aged 18, McElderry has gone to win a couple of other entertainment shows.

These include ITV's Popstar to Operastar in 2011 and Channel 4’s The Jump in 2014.

After splitting with Cowell's label in 2011, he joined record company Decca. The move led to some success for the singer as his album Classic went in at number two in the UK album charts.

According to his Twitter page he is still a recording artist.


Matt Cardle (2010)

As for the majority of X Factor champions, his winning single When We Collide was a Christmas number one.

In 2013 he released his third album Porcelain as an independent release.

The guitarist has now put the recording studio behind him for a career in the West End.

He can be seen in the musical Memphis where he plays DJ Huey Clahoun.


Little Mix (2011)

The girl group were put together in series eight and became the first group to win the show.

Earlier this year #4YearsofLittleMix trended on Twitter as fans shared their love for the bands longevity. 

Recently Little Mix won Breakout Artist at the Teen Choice Awards. 


James Arthur (2012)

It hasn’t been a steady ride for this X Factor winner after his contract with Syco was terminated.

However he is now back in the studio where he is working on some new music with record label Columbia Germany. 

Arthur tweeted over the weekend from this year's X Factor semi-final about how much he enjoyed the show. 


Sam Bailey (2013)

The former prison officer won with her version of Demi Lovato’s Skyscraper.

In 2014 she performed at the Metro Radio Arena alongside Ed Sheeran and Michael Bublé. 

She also supported music sensation Beyoncé at the Birmingham LG Arena as part of The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour.  

From this Friday until March 2016 Bailey will be touring across the country. 


Ben Haenow (2014)

Haenow is the latest contestant to have won the X Factor.

Since winning he has accomplished his aim of helping to pay off his Mum’s mortgage. 

He appeared on this year's series to perform his latest single Second Hand Heart which features American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson.

The X Factor final will see the three remaining contestants battle it out at Wembley Arena for a chance to become this year's champion.

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This weekend's final will see Reggie N Bollie, Che Chesterman or Louisa Johnson win the entertainment programme, but what happened to the previous winners of the show?