A Chelsea Pensioner, a very special dog, a Grenfell Tower survivor and a handful of singers are among the acts who will compete in the Britain’s Got Talent semi-finals.
The judges deliberated over all of the acts that had been successful in the series in Saturday’s episode of the talent competition, making dreams come true for some but breaking the hearts of others.
Among the acts who made it through was Colin Thackery, a war veteran and Chelsea Pensioner whose first audition saw him sing Wind Beneath My Wings in a tribute to his late wife.
Upon learning he had made it through to the live semi-finals, Thackery said: “Absolutely marvellous, I can’t believe it. I’ve got a military salute for it.”
He added that it is “the biggest thing in my life”.
He will be joined in the live shows by Leanne Mya, who survived the Grenfell Tower blaze in 2017. She won over the judges for showing her courage while singing Sam Smith’s Lay Me Down in her audition.
Other singers who made it through were Mark McMullan, who sang Bring Him Home from Les Miserables for his disabled brother in his audition, and music teacher Brian Gilligan, who impressed the judges with his emotional rendition of I’ll Never Love Again from A Star Is Born.
Also making it through to the next round was 18-year-old student Faith Tucker, who had initially surprised Cowell and the judges with her powerful opera performance.
Pc Dave Wardell and his retired police dog Finn, who was stabbed saving his life, also sailed through to the next round.
Their initial act saw Finn relay words chosen by the judges to his handler in an apparent display of telepathy.
Joining other acts on stage to hear of their fate, David Walliams told Pc Wardell: “It’s all about, is this an act we think could win Britain’s Got Talent, one that could perform at the Royal Variety Performance, one that could have a huge international career?”
They were then told they had made it through, and Pc Wardell was told by head judge Simon Cowell: “Your story was amazing, I mean, incredible.”
Cowell was previously brought to tears when hearing how service animal Finn was stabbed with a 10-inch blade after he jumped between Pc Wardell and an offender wielding a knife.
Finn suffered serious stab wounds to the chest and head but did not let go until reinforcements arrived, and was initially thought unlikely to survive.
Comic act Barbara Nice, harpist Ursula Burns – who had first performed by straddling her instrument on-stage – and comedy magician and children’s entertainer Graeme Mathews were also put through to the semi-finals.
A number of dance troupes made it through to the next round, including dancers and singers KNE and Iconic, a group of dancers aged seven to 18 who dress up as well-known pop acts.
However, many acts failed to make it through to the semi-finals.
A dancer who had impersonated Theresa May with a fun-filled striptease-style performance did not make it through.
Yoga teacher Kath Thompson, whose audition was shown earlier in the episode, told hosts Ant and Dec: “I’m a bit fed-up about the lack of confidence!”
The live semi-finals of the show will see the 40 remaining acts battle it out for a place in the live final on Sunday June 2.
The winner of the series will win a cash prize and the chance to perform at the Royal Variety Performance.
Britain’s Got Talent continues on ITV at 7.30pm on Monday.