MANILA, Philippines – Former Manila-based Filipino-Australian musician Chris Cayzer wowed audience members and judges alike by performing his version of Vanessa Carlton’s “A Thousand Miles” in the live auditions for the fourth season of “X Factor Australia” aired Monday night.
In a video clip posted by user hiptoeknee, judge and former Spice Girls member Mel B. could be seen giving Chris a standing ovation as he sings the last line of the song.
“There’s something extra special with you that I haven’t seen in a long time. Now, if you’re serious about this, you can win this,” Mel said.
Aside from her, other judges are Ronan Keating, member of defunct boy band Boyzone; Guy Sebastian, the first “Australian Idol” champ; and Natalie Bassingthwaighte, an Australian singer-actress.
“Chris, you would be in the Over 25 category, and I don’t think there’s anybody like you in that category. I think you could do really well,” Ronan commented.
On her part, Natalie told Chris, “I am very, very happy that you came back to Australia.”
But Guy had a different opinion from his fellow judges.
“I think that you would have to grow up. I like you, but I think for you to be a superstar, you’d have to grow a lot,” he said, eventually voting against Chris because his performance “just didn’t blow me away.”
The rest, however, voted yes for Chris, with Mel telling him, “See you in boot camp.”
“It just feels good to be playing in front of that many people again,” Cayzer said off stage.
Chris flew back to Australia in May last year after staying in the Philippines for six years. In his taped interview aired prior his performance, the singer-actor explained, “I came back here just to be close the family.”
He later added, “My sister just got married and she’s actually gonna have a baby and, you know, I just wanna be an uncle.”
The 25-year-old musician considers the Philippines as his “training ground.”
“I did a lot of crazy stuff over there. I started acting, I released two albums, I got an award for Favorite New Male Artist. It’s great. People actually buy your music, it’s a good feeling. I just really wanted to come back to succeed in Australia,” he recalled.
Chris said he’s been performing around Brisbane, his hometown, since his return.
“I really want a bigger audience. You know, just being professional. It’s the only thing I know how to do. It’s why I’m here,” he said.