She has managed to steal the hearts of the British public during her time on X Factor UK, surviving three sing offs on her journey to the Top 5.
And on Saturday’s “Louis Loves” themed show, Saara Aalto did her absolute best to make next week’s semi-finals, covering ABBA’s “The Winner Takes It All” and a mash-up of “Diamonds Are Forever” by Dame Shirley Bassey and Marilyn Monroe’s “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend”. But how did she do?
In her VT, Saara and her friend from home were treated to an afternoon at a ski lodge. Afterwards, Saara was shown naughtily spying on a focus group. The best thing about Saara? Well, “everything” according to the group. However, they felt that “big costumes cheapen her”, which we kind of agree with.
For her first appearance, Saara worked her magic on one of ABBA’s signature ballads. Check it out below!
Saara Aalto – “The Winner Takes It All” – X Factor UK
Having previously covered the ABBA staple at Sharon’s home in L.A, it was obvious that Saara would nail this song. And our girl did not disappoint.
The flawless performance began with Saara at the piano, seated on a red and gold throne. Sartorially simple with chic hair and makeup, Saara took the advice of the focus group. The gold headpiece was a subtle nod to her individuality, and it worked.
The track was given a dramatic, epic rearrangement which gave Saara the opportunity to show off every facet of her insane vocal range. During the huuuge note at the end, Sharon stood up to cheer, while the audience actually applauded over the track. The love was plain to see y’all!
Saara received a standing ovation from the judging panel, which was totally unanimous in its praise for the Finnish songstress.
Nicole Scherzinger gushed: “You just took first place in the competition. You just showed that you are a real fighting contender to win X Factor 2016”.
“We talk a lot about having a moment. You just had the moment with that song” said Simon. “That sounded like a current record, it could be a hit. It wasn’t so crazy, it was genuinely you.”
Louis admitted that he intentionally chose a tough track for Saara, but loved the performance: “I picked the hardest ABBA song for you. You were note perfect. I think we’ve seen one of the best performances we’ve ever seen on X Factor vocally.
And Saara’s mentor Mrs O kept it short and sweet: “You just took my breath away, you were so perfect, it was so beautiful.”
When questioned by host Dermot O’Leary, Saara confessed that this week was a “hard week, it was so perfect, I enjoyed it so much. I’m also so surprised when I hear my name, I just can’t believe it. I’m just so grateful, thank you.” Girl, we believe in you!
Saara Aalto – “Diamonds Are Forever/Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” – X Factor UK
In her second VT, Saara said that she chose this mash-up in order to prove her creativity and versatility. Can she actually be any more versatile?
The performance began with Saara lounging seductively on a cloud for the Shirley Bassey section of the number. This girl knows how to work the camera! Saara literally dived backward into the uptempo “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” part of the song, and that’s where the fun began. Las Vegas darling! With her dance troupe, Saara ramped up the camp, and we loved it! Everyone likes some cheese now and again, no?
This time however, only Louis and Sharon gave a standing ovation, and the judges’ comments were noticeably divided, as some of them felt that Saara’s first performance was markedly better.
Nicole declared: “That was batshizzle bananas, with whipped cream all over. A little bit of a cheese explosion. You were born to be on that stage”
Simon appeared unusually speechless and admitted “I feel like I’m drunk. You are incredible. Cheesy is an understatement.” However, he felt that the first song was better.
“Nobody works harder than you. You sing, you dance, you bring everything” said Louis. “I want everyone in Finland to lift their phones and vote. They can try!” There were serious Louis lols tonight!
Even Sharon admitted that she preferred the ABBA cover, but maintained that Saara is “multi-talented.”
Regardless of the judges comments, social media was awash with support for Saara as usual.
VOTE FOR SAARA AALTO
If you are in the UK, you can either vote by phone, text or on the X Factor app. Voting will close on Sunday during the live results show.
The bottom two acts will compete in a sing-off, with the judges choosing which act will stay and who will go. If the judges are tied in their decision, this weekend’s public vote between the two acts will decide the result.
If you’re calling from a landline or mobile, Saara is #2. You can dial:
Landline: 090 20 50 51 02
Mobile: 6 50 51 02
So, what did you think of Saara Aalto on X Factor’s “Louis Loves” week? Which performance did you prefer? Let us know in the comments below!