herald

Thursday 14 December 2017

X Factor Melanie is too ill to join Jedward on Eurosong spectacular

THEY might be hot favourites to win Eurosong but it's not all going to plan for Jedward.

The duo have had to go in search of a new backing singer just days before the final showdown on the Late Late Show.

John and Edward Grimes are understood to be in intense rehearsals this week ahead of Friday's contest -- but suffered a massive setback yesterday.

It has emerged that Melanie McCabe, who rose to fame during the X Factor auditions, has had to drop out of their team.

The 18-year-old is devastated after being struck down by illness days before the show.

"It's just so disappointing not be able to sing with Jedward," she said.

Claire Molloy, who performed with the pop twins during their successfully panto Jedward And The Beanstalk, has been drafted in to replace Melanie.

A spokesperson for the quirky boys admitted: "We've changed all the rehearsals as Claire isn't even here yet but all will come into place."

Cool

She will now perform backing vocals alongside Leanne Moore who was also with Jedward at last year's Eurovision Song Contest when they were eighth.

Jedward said: "It's not ideal obviously, but Melanie was unwell for the last week.

"I believe it was the flu and her voice had been strained ... Things are a little frantic now but we are confident that we can get things back on track."

Although they are red hot favourite to triumph on Friday night, Jedward and their mentor Linda Martin say it is not a foregone conclusion.

They will face stiff competition in the form of another former Eurovision entry -- Donna McCaul. She is being mentored by Bill Hughes and will perform a song called Mercy.

Other entries include Maria McCool from the Gweedore Gaeltacht in Donegal, singer/songwriter Andrew Mann and double act Una Gibney and David Shannon.

Jedward will perform a song written by Swedish composer Nick Jarls.

labutler@herald.ie

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