Creative Brand Communications


June 4, 2024

Simon Cowell launches nationwide hunt for next UK boyband phenomenon.

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Internationally acclaimed music mogul Simon Cowell reveals his mission to discover the UK’s next boyband megastars, commencing nationwide auditions later this month.

The new venture comes 14 years after the launch of his last boyband sensation, One Direction, which was formed on the X Factor in 2010.

The band achieved global success, with members Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, and Louis Tomlinson all having global success as solo artists.

Cowell surprised Londoners today by erecting a mammoth billboard sign that read, ‘Simon needs you! Future megastars wanted for new boyband. No time wasters.’

The unexpected sight of the Britain’s Got Talent star turned heads as he was seen scaling a ladder in dungarees, armed with a brush and bucket of poster paste.

This UK search will deviate from the televised talent shows Simon has recently judged. With no TV spectacle, shiny floors or audience vote, it’s a return to core talent discovery, focussing on unearthing stars who will make their mark on a generation.

Simon Cowell said, “Every generation deserves a megastar boyband and I don’t think there has been one to have the success of One Direction in over 14 years. The industry tends to focus on solo artists – so it usually takes someone from outside to put a group together. Nothing beats the fun of being in a group, touring the world and performing for thousands – and it’s also a brilliant launchpad for a solo career. When you have a great group, it’s like lightning in a bottle but there’s no magic formula and a fair bit of luck involved!”

“There’s always a high degree of risk and I genuinely have no idea what’s going to happen! We might uncover an incredible group; we might not get there. What if no one shows up to auditions? That could be awkward. There is no guaranteed path to success – anything can happen, but that’s what’s exciting for me and that’s why I’m doing this.”

Auditions are scheduled in cities across the UK, kicking off in Newcastle (4th & 5th July) and followed by Liverpool (7 & 8 July), Dublin (28th & 29th July) and London (1st, 2nd & 3rd August. Cowell is seeking talented males aged 16-18 who possess the passion, charisma, and star quality to form the next boyband sensation.

With many boyband members achieving success after going solo, Cowell emphasises the crucial role boybands play as launch pads for solo artists, including the likes of Harry Styles.

Simon added, “A huge number of solo artists began their journey in a group and have achieved great success, including Beyonce, Sir Paul McCartney, Robbie Williams, and our very own One Direction boy. Even artists who came from High School Musical were effectively launched from groups.”

The search is being documented by Box To Box for a potential documentary series.

Aspiring participants can sign up for the auditions here:


Notes to editors

Simon Cowell is a renowned television and film producer, record executive, and global entertainment visionary. Known for his exceptional eye for talent, Simon has transformed popular culture through his showbusiness ventures. His career in music A&R and music TV formats has launched more superstar careers than any other figure in history.

Artists discovered through Cowell’s TV shows have collectively achieved more than 750 million record sales, including over 150 No. 1 records in the UK, more than 350 No. 1 singles, and over 1,000 Top 10 records globally. These successes feature hits by stars such as One Direction, Camila Cabello, Little Mix, Leona Lewis, Susan Boyle, CNCO, Paul Potts, James Arthur, Fifth Harmony, Louis Tomlinson, Olly Murs, JLS, Jackie Evancho, Alexandra Burke, Grace VanderWaal, and Rebecca Ferguson, among many others. Local versions of his shows have also discovered hundreds of artists worldwide.

His company, Syco Entertainment, is an independent entertainment company that created and owns iconic TV formats like “Got Talent” and “The X Factor.” “Got Talent” is officially the world’s most successful reality TV format, with “America’s Got Talent” being the No. 1 summer series in the US for the past 19 years. “The X Factor” is the most successful music TV format in history, producing more global chart-topping stars than any other show. These two shows currently air in more than 180 countries, reaching over a billion viewers each year.


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