BBC One controller defends decision to buy ‘The Voice’

Danny Cohen claims that he is not trying to copy 'The X Factor'

The controller of BBC One has defended their decision to buy The Voice.

The reality singing competition will debut on the channel next year, but the move has drawn criticism in some quarters for trying to copy The X Factor. Now controller Danny Cohen has spoken up for the new show.

He has told the audience at a BAFTA event: “We feel that there’s enough difference in this format that it will stand out. The fact that ITV tried very hard to get it – even though they’ve got The X Factor – suggests that they feel this show is different enough.”

The show, which is based on a Dutch format, has already been a huge hit in the US. Billed as a kinder alternative to The X Factor, judges hear the first auditions ‘blind’, so judging them purely on their voice rather than their appearance. So far, Jessie J is the only confirmed judge, but rumour has it that Cee Lo Green, a judge on the US show, may also join the panel

Cohen added that he is keen to bring more variety to the channel’s entertainment line-up, according to Mirror. He said: “We’ve got three dancing shows on BBC One this year on Saturday nights, and I wanted to decrease that but still find ways we could have live, often performance-based television. We are in an era where the audience love that [and] we shouldn’t ignore what the audience wants.”

Last night (October 16), 11.6 million viewers watched boyband Nu Vibe voted off The X Factor, with ratings once again down by two million on the equivalent show from last year.