X marked the spot in Los Angeles on Day 1 of a nationwide search for the first $5 million "The X Factor" champion in the United States. Does the next singing sensation already call Hollywood home?
With such a large jackpot, executive producer Rob Wade estimated that over 15,000 hopefuls registered to audition. "We're looking for a global superstar… This isn't a TV show. This is genuinely an audition to find the best singer in America."
"The X Factor" is already a phenomenon in the U.K. Thanks to Simon Cowell, the talent competition jumped across the pond to U.S. turf. It's still unclear who will be joining the snarky Brit and L.A. Reid on the judging panel.
With two slots to fill, the auditionees weighed in on possibilities. Some of the names thrown out there were Cyndi Lauper and the head of Sony. Kenneth Schwab, 52, from Las Vegas, opined, "Sharon Osbourne because I love Ozzy." Sisters from the group "The Kleindashians" thought Cheryl Cole and Mariah Carey would have a lot to offer, but would be "intimidated" by Mariah. Rob promised he and Simon are actively working towards making a final decision.
Young and mature alike filled the L.A. Sports Arena, all sharing one common goal. An overwhelming number of solo acts turned up in comparison to groups. The ensembles tended to keep it a family fair. A mother and daughters group, father/son duo, and brother trio showed us what they got. Modern-day Von Trapps, the Fowler Family trio of sisters, "started singing together 7 years ago at church" and are now embarking on the road to fame and fortune.
Watch the video for a musical and colorful look at highlights from the audition line.