'The Voice' U.K. Season 4 Debut Draws 8 Million Viewers

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Rita Ora

The BBC show with new coach Rita Ora, who replaced Kylie Minogue, falls below last season's opener

The season-four premiere of The Voice U.K. on BBC One Saturday night drew 8.05 million viewers on average, according to ratings data.

The singing show with new coach Rita Ora had attracted an average audience of 8.40 million for the launch episode of last season, according to ratings consultancy Attentional.

In 2013, the season opener had reached 6.24 million viewers in the overnight ratings, down from 8.43 million in its first season, the consultancy said.

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The singing competition's January launch has helped it avoid competition from ITV ratings hit Britain's Got Talent with Simon Cowell.

Ora replaced Kylie Minogue, who made a splash last season. The three other coaches on the show, namely will.i.am, Tom Jones and Kaiser Chiefs singer Ricky Wilson returned for the fourth season.

The show's fourth-season opener peaked with an audience of 9.1 million and was the day's most watched program in the U.K.

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The Voice had a strong start to its first season in Britain, but audience figures dropped after the audition rounds with the format's popular spinning chairs. The BBC and the show producers were credited with reinvigorating audience interest when they announced the addition of Minogue for the third season.

The Voice format was developed by Dutch producer John de Mol's Talpa Media and is produced for the BBC by Wall to Wall Media, part of Warner Bros.-controlled TV production and distribution firm Shed Media Group.

Email: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai