I”ll be there for you! Craig Colton comforts runner-up Marcus at X Factor after-party
He was impressively gracious in defeat despite his devastating loss to Little Mix during last night”s X Factor final.
But runner-up Marcus Collins has plenty of support surrounding him, including fellow contestant and good friend Craig Colton.
Craig cheered Marcus up at the after-party with a hug and tomfoolery for photographers outside the Corinthia Hotel.
Consolation hugs: X Factor runner-up is comforted by his friend and fellow X Factor contestant Craig Colton at the after-party
The pair messed around for the cameras, ensuring a smile stayed on Collins” face throughout the evening.
Craig was popular among all the contestants, becoming friends with Marcus, Sophie Habibas and Janet Devlin in particular.
He tweeted in the early hours of this morning: “Rather drunk with the X Factor crew.”
Time to party! Marcus arrived at the hotel with third-place finalist Amelia Lily after the show
Marcus also had support in the form of his mother, who made several appearances on TV over the weekend, and also from his boyfriend David, who tweeted: “So proud of @MarcuscollinsUK love u so much you was amazing last night u r my winner.”
Earlier on stage, Marcus was shaken after learning he had not won the competition, but said: “I”m really proud of myself, these girls really deserve it, they”re amazing.”
“I thought tonight really went well, I enjoyed myself.”
Good sport: After coming runner-up to Little Mix in the X Factor final, Marcus Collins said he had found his time on the show “amazing”
Proud mentor: Gary Barlow supported his act to the end, saying he had been brilliant to work with
His mentor Gary added: “I”m so proud of him, he”s been a brilliant contestant, well done.”
Speaking later on the Xtra Factor, Marcus said: I”m proud of myself. I”ve worked so hard and I”ve achieved something. I”m so proud.
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“Tonight is best night of my entire life. I enjoyed singing seven songs, I challenged myself,” he added.
He spoke about his hopes for a career in music, continuing: “I’m going to work so hard.”
Gary told Marcus that he could call him for advice any time, stressing that he’d make sure Marcus got the right record deal, the right songs and the right album.
Ithad been an emotional evening for the 23-year-old, as he said before the show: “A couple more performances now and one of us is going to be crowned the winner. It”s amazing.
Marcus kicked off the solo performances of the night, singing his favourite track of the series, Higher and Higher.
Last moments: The finalists were sick with nerves as they prepared themselves to hear the final verdict
Thrilled: Little Mix couldn”t contain their joy after is was announced that they had won the show
“Performing higher and higher was a real moment for me on the show, it was one of my favourite performances on the whole series,” he explained.
“It”s such an important song to me, it gives me such a boost every time I hear it.”
“I always knew I wanted to be a singer, even when I was younger. It would mean so much to me if I could win The X Factor – I don”t want my dreams dashed at the last minute,” he added.
Letting his smile slip: Marcus”s usual cheerful grin was momentarily absent as he spoke to Dermot
…. but he quickly brightened after a few encouraging words from Gary
After his performance, Louis said: “Marcus, you are a born little pop star. soulful, likeable, amazing – you”ve got it all.”
“That is your best song of the series and I predict a very bright future for you, well done,” commented Tulisa.
Aclearly excitable Kelly added: “First of all, you lifted this crowd this evening higher and higher. And I hope you have enjoyed every minuteof the time you were here and I hope you know how bright and big your future is. I”m so in love with you and I”m so happy you got this far.”
Tense moment: After giving his performances his all, the 23-year-old nervously awaited his fate
And mentor Gary said: “Once again well done and congrats on another amazing performance. In the history of The X Factor I can”t remember a finalist or a winner who takes hold of the stage like you do and shines even amongst 40 people.”
Marcus”s second song was a cover of Wham!”s Last Christmas.
The energetic lad encouraged the audience to sing along as he worked the stage in his checked three-piece suit.
Opening number: Marcus kicked off the solo performances of the night, singing his favourite track of the series, Higher and Higher
Full of energy: Marcus was on form as he hit the Wembley arena stage for the last time
Afterwards, Louis said: “Every week you bring something new and you are always happy, you”re always smiling and you”re always grateful – you”re work ethic is amazing.”
Tulisa said: “This has been such a long journey for the contestants, for the judges. I think we”ve been so caught up in it that we forgot It”s Christmas! But you reminded us.”
Kelly added: “What a great early Christmas gift, ho ho ho. Marcus, I just love you and I”m so happy for you once again. Congratulations.”
Feeling the Christmas spirit: Marcus”s second song of the night was Wham!”s Last Christmas
And Gary said: “I”m going to do something I haven”t done all series and I”m going to ask the whole nation to vote for you tonight. I can”t tell you what a pleasure it has been to work with you, it has made the series for me.”
Speaking Marcus”s rendition of Cannonball, Louis said: “If I was to put everything into a computer under the words ‘pop star’, you would come out.”
“That performance was as beautiful as your smile,” gushed Tulisa.
Tearing up Marcus was certainly feeling every word as he sung the winner”s single, Cannonball
It looked as though usually stoic Gary Barlow was tearing up as he told Marcus that his performance had been “incredible” and that his version “should be the winners single.”
Eyes streaming, Marcus replied: “Gary, where would I be without you”
One former hairdressing client payed the Liverpudlian the dubious compliment: “He”s a better singer than he is a hairdresser.”
Support at home: Marcus”s fans were out in force tonight, chatting to Olly Murs and Caroline Flack
Simon Cowell dealt a devastating blow to Marcus”s hopes last night, as he announced via Skype that he was a big fan of Little Mix.
The music mogul said on the Xtra Factor: “If I had to pick a group, I’ve given it away haven’t I No question or doubt, Little Mix won the night.”
The strong words of support didn”t end there for the girls as Simon continued: “Little Mix were a revelation and if a girl group could win this show, it kind of makes history and maybe something special is going to happen.”