Bevan Hurley

Bevan Hurley is the Herald on Sunday chief reporter.

Marie gets the judges' votes - and the push

Marie Jayet won't be on the New Zealand's Got Talent set. Photo / Doug Sherring
Marie Jayet won't be on the New Zealand's Got Talent set. Photo / Doug Sherring

They've got the approval of three judges, but the cream of New Zealand's Got Talent contestants are still waiting to hear if they've made the cut for the show.

The TVNZ hit show's selection processes are in the spotlight after a blind singer was rejected last week, despite receiving unanimous praise from the three audition judges.

Marie Jayet, 47, said she received a standing ovation in a live audition for the talent show at the TelstraClear Events Centre in Manukau on July 25.

The singer, who has been blind since birth, was given "yes" buzzers and gushing praise by judges Ali Campbell, Rachel Hunter and Jason Kerrison. But two weeks later she was contacted by a producer at Imagination Television and told that too many singers had gone through to the next round and as a result she wouldn't be required.

TVNZ spokeswoman Meredith McGrath confirmed that Jayet received thumbs-ups from all three judges, indicating their unanimous decision to forward her through for selection for the semifinals.

"Immediately after her audition, she was advised by a legal representative backstage that she was now being considered for selection for the semifinals of the competition," McGrath said.

"All contestants who auditioned in front of the judges and received 'yes' buzzers were told the same thing after their respective performances.

"They were also all told that they would be contacted by the producers in the coming weeks to advise them if they had been successful in making it through to the next round.

"No contestants have been advised they have been selected as semifinalists as of today."

Jayet told the Herald on Sunday she was crushed by the sudden about-turn. "I think it was a scandalous thing that they did."

- Herald on Sunday

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