Entertainment & Arts

The Voice UK: Steve McCrorie crowned winner

Steve McCrorie
Image caption McCrorie, from Clackmannanshire, has already been asked to perform at T in the Park

Scottish firefighter Steve McCrorie has won the fourth series of The Voice.

The 30-year-old triumphed over Lucy O'Byrne, a theatre usher who is trying to make it as an opera singer.

"I'm so lost for words right now," he said, his voice cracking after being told he had won. "I can't thank everyone enough for doing this for me."

His debut single is a cover of Lost Stars, from the film Begin Again. The original, by Adam Levine, was nominated for an Oscar earlier this year.

For the first time in the show's history, the single was released immediately after the final. At the time of writing, it is at the top of the iTunes chart.

Image caption The other finalists: Emmanuel Nwamai, Lucy O'Byrne and Sasha Simone

McCrorie said his ultimate dream was to be a "successful and sustainable artist", something his predecessors have largely failed to achieve.

So far, Andrea Begley is the only victor to crack the top 10, taking her debut album, The Message, to number seven in 2013.

Leanne Mitchell, the first winner in 2012, was dropped by her label last year after failing to crack the top 40. Last year's winner, Jermain Jackman - who was mentored by will.i.am - saw his debut album stall at 42 last month.

McCrorie was steered to victory by Kaiser Chiefs frontman Ricky Wilson, who put the singer's victory down to "connecting with people".

"Stevie's a typical Scotsman. Although on paper he was the favourite all along he still felt like the massive underdog."

Asked about previous winners' lack of success, Wilson quickly replied: "Stevie hasn't won it before."

The grand final attracted an average audience of 6.3 million on Saturday, down from 6.6 million in 2014 and 7.2 million in 2013.

But 7.9 million were watching when the winner was announced at 21:00 BST, an improvement on last year's peak audience.

Image caption The final also saw a dramatic performance from Paloma Faith

McCrorie was the favourite to win the show with bookmakers, who now offer odds of 3/1 that his debut single will go to number one.

As well as O'Byrne, he beat Emmanuel Nwamadi and Sasha Simone, who were eliminated halfway through the final.

The show also saw special guests Paloma Faith and The Script take to the stage - marking former coach Danny O'Donoghue's return to the singing competition after two years.

Current coach Rita Ora also performed New York Raining with Charles Hamilton - a song taken from the soundtrack to hit US TV show Empire.

As the show drew to a close, McCrorie said he was finding it hard to accept his victory.

"A lot of people have saw something in me that I didn't see," he said.

"Even standing up there I've still got that self doubt and I think it's going to take a while to click in, to take in, that I've actually won The Voice 2015."

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