Britney Spears Brings Her Circus To ‘X-Factor’

Third and final European performance is the best yet!

Britney Spears wrapped up her mini-European promo tour ahead of the release of her new album Circus (due out in stores on Tuesday December 2) by performing on the UK competitive reality program X-Factor on live TV last nightgiving the program it’s highest ratings ever, pulling in 12.8 million viewers! Even tho Britney turned in the same routine that she gave in Germany and in France, there were small amendments to the routine and more life in this latest performance (I thought) than the previous two performances. Here are a few pics of Britney (lookin’ smokin’, I might add) on the X-Factor stage last night:


Britney Spears sang her latest hit on the X Factor stage during her first UK television performance in over four years. The pop singer, who turns 27 on Tuesday, mimed her way through her latest single Womanizer after the five remaining finalists each covered a classic Britney track. Spears, who was dressed all in black, with hotpants, fishnet tights and knee-high boots, did not coach the show’s contestants, as previous guests have done. It has been reported Spears travelled with a 45-strong entourage of stylists and security. And reports claimed she is said to have banned contestants and judges from approaching her. But the judging panel gave her a standing ovation along with an excited crowd. On Monday, she releases her sixth studio album Circus, and has been on a whistle-stop tour of Europe to promote the record. Earlier, Alexandra Burke, who sang Toxic, said: “When I was nine, Britney brought out Baby One More Time, and I loved her. I’m very excited about meeting her. This is the Britney we all know and love. I hope I can do my Britney song justice, with my own twist.” Eoghan Quigg performed Sometimes, Ruth Lorenzo – who was later voted off the reality show – sang I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll, Diana Vickers sang I’m Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman and JLS took on Baby One More Time.

For me, the folks making such a big deal of Britney lip-syncing (“miming”) are missing the point — and none of this criticism is new. Even at the height of her fame, critics felt it necessary to try and demean her performances by making a point of the lip-syncing. She is a performer, not really a singer … she has always been this way. I, for one, do not mind it at all. I find when critics attack her for the lip-syncing it’s because they’ve run out of other things to complain about … it means that things have finally gotten back to normal ;) Regarding this performance, I felt that she offered the most vim and vigor of all the performances she put on this week. Even tho she wore the same outfit that she wore in Germany, I think she looked the best on X-Factor than on the other two shows. The rolling steel cage ball was taken out of the performance and made it feel more like a dance routine than a “spectacle” — I liked it. At the end, Britney got a standing ovation from the crowd and from the judges. The girl is not trying to reinvent the wheel … slowly and steadily, she is working towards getting back to her comfort zone. I think she is handling it all very well. After the jump, check out a backstage photo of Britney with the X-Factor judges, a few photos of Britney making her exit from the venue and video of her performance in full …

Here is a very cute group shot of Britney Spears with the X-Factor judges Simon Cowell, Cheryl Cole (of Girls Aloud), Louis Walsh and Dannii Minogue (my girl!):


Here are a few pics of a jubilant Britney waving to her admirers as she left the X-Factor studios last night:


And without further ado (for those of you who have yet to see it or just want to watch it again), here is Brit‘s X-Factor performance of Womanizer:


Again, I feel that this was her strongest performance yet … clearly she was more comfortable this time around. She looked great, haters be damned. I understand that Britney has already left the UK and has prolly already arrived here in NYC. We know, for sure, that she will be performing live on Good Morning America Tuesday morning and rumor has it she may appear at the Xmas tree lighting at Rockefeller Center Wednesday night. I can’t wait :) So … thoughts?

[Photo credit: Splash News; Source, Source, Source]

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  1. Brown Loose

    I think Brit got her confidence back, that’s for sure.
    Lack of dancing? Yeah, a lil’ bit, but I’m sure Circus will have a whole dance routine, which will show us what an icredible dancer Britney really is.

    And btw getting back in her zone really helps Britney look-wise – our girl is literally glowing!

  2. Ron

    Pure Bliss!

    Brit is back stronger, healthier, and happier. That’s all I can ask for.

    Dec 2nd needs to get here now!

  3. jenny

    1st… woo!
    i was watching britney’s performance on the tv here in the uk and me and my housemates all applauded her.
    by the way, that’s cheryl cole not nadine…

  4. sarah

    that’s cheryl cole, not nadine.

    and I’m surprised that you, trent, of all people, someone who is so passionate about music, would be so lenient on her lip syncing. just because she has always done it doesn’t mean she shouldn’t still be criticized for it. if you want to call yourself a “performer” perform in every aspect including SINGING. if you want to just dance onstage call yourself a pussycat doll.

    we have every right to call britney out for recycling the same thing over and over again. people are giving her the benefit of the doubt because she is “britney” but if a new artist came and did this we would have her head. do something inventive, creative, mesmerizing. then I’ll pay attention to you.

  5. Char

    Yup yup, Cheryl not Nadine :)

  6. Sasha

    I totaly agree with sarah shes been around for all this time and i know it must be difficult for her to come back after her breakdown but on this show in particular in which EVERY other celebrity guest has sung live (even mariah!) i think miming was very disapointing. Especially when shes there to set an example to the contenstants who sound fantastic singing live. And yeah its cheryl not nadine! the nicest one in the band :)

  7. Chelsea

    Holla to that sasha!

  8. But it’s an old argument … it’s the same one leveled at her for years and, yet, she is still beloved the world over. I’m amazed at how much energy people exert over leveling negativity towards her even as she tries to get back into her groove. I have to believe that the hatred and negativity have to fuel her drive, otherwise why would she continue to bother? I cannot commend her enough for getting back in the saddle after falling so far. She was in a mental hospital at the start of the year and now she’s back to performing on live TV. Pretty remarkable to me :)

  9. nicole

    i totally agree with you sarah. like yeah…yay she looks better..but shes still in no shape to be performing. its still too soon and you can tell. all you guys keep saying is how she looks great but wont admit that the performances havent been as good as your all making it seem. as soon as we say something truthful about it, we’re “haters”. well no were not…we’re just being truthful. im glad the girls getting her life back together, but this is just too much too soon and its showing.

  10. Oh and btw, she was not brought on the show to mentor the contestants at all … X-Factor and Simon Cowell wanted to get on the Britney comeback train and booked her to perform … basically independent of the show itself.

  11. nicole

    Trent – going froma a mental hospital to going back on tv..all in less then a year..dont you find that too much too soon? it just makes everything seem so rushed to me.

  12. Sasha

    I love britney i really do i just think that the fact that she ill this year shouldnt be an excuse AS MUCH as it is it can be used to say how far shes come but its her job you know i mean its fine now but in what 2 3 years are people still going to excuse it just because she was ill years ago? I just think she still needs to prove that she can do it thats all.

  13. Sasha

    Also if shes not 100% ready to sing again why bring her back now and not leave it until she is?

  14. Sasha

    Fair enough thats why she was on it trent but why could she not mentor them is it really too much of an effort?

  15. Chelsea

    I agree surely shed be perfect to advise them on what to do and what not to do?

  16. Missy

    My problem with her lip-syncing isn’t that she’s doing it. It’s that she does it poorly. After ten years of doing it, you’d think she’d be a pro at it…but she’s not.

  17. sarah

    I don’t care that it is an old argument because it is still relevant. I’m a music fan and I want to see a dynamic performance, and that includes singing. isn’t singing about feeling the music and putting emotion into your words? if you’re miming, how can you do that? that means you’re faking it. great music is raw and real. I’m fine with britney being what she is I just don’t like all the attention she is getting for it. praise a true artist.

    can I ask you trent, how would you feel if NIN went onstage and mimed all their instruments?

  18. Justin

    i love how they use his mic at the end even though she has one on her face. LOL!

  19. Missy

    I think it’s a valid argument, until everyone accepts it as fact. Just go to any Britney fan board and it’s “She’s not lip-syncing. She’s singing along to the back-up track.” Which in turn allows them to argue that “She’s barely dacing because it’s hard to dance and sing at the same time.”

  20. mark

    lipsyncing on a singing competition? for shame.

  21. Leia

    I agree with Trent on this one. I appreciate music from bands who play their own instruments and can actually sing live, but I also like artists like Britney who are entertainers more so than musicians. Britney is a guilty pleasure for me — she is/was an amazing dancer and her songs are catchy and fun to sing. I don’t expect much more from her, and I love her just for what she does well.

  22. BB

    I’ve been doing musical theatre since I was four. (I’m 27 now.) In my twenty-three years of performing, you’d better believe there were songs and shows that got lipsynched!! “MISSY” IS THE ONLY OTHER POSTER HERE WHO GETS IT. You ALWAYS sing along WITH the track. The plain truth is, if you have a vigorous routine, you CANNOT do the song justice. Ever wonder why you don’t hear people panting when they’re dancing and singing? Because they’re either 1) not doing a vigorous routine, 2) lip synching, 3) singing “live” so you don’t THINK they’re lip synching, which REALLY means they recorded a “live” version of the studio mixed song, and are lip synching to THAT. It sounds enough different from the album version that you go, “Oh, that sounds different. Obviously they’re REALLY singing.”

  23. Sarah — Britney = apples, NIN = oranges

  24. BB

    Oh, and I forgot to say. Artists also purchase microphones for many, many, MANY thousands of dollars that come with a chip inside them that they program with them singing the song, so If they sing off key, it will emit the correct note (in their previously recorded voice), so that no one can hear their mistake. It comes from the mic & speakers just like their actual “live” singing, and covers their missed note. It is NOT UNCOMMON for these microphones to be used in “live” performances.

  25. Phil

    I just get upset that they dont event try and hide the fact that she is lypsyching i mean, she barely moves/dances as much, so i think she could sing a little haha.. .but all in alll i see shes getting better
    – i just dont think i wana spend loads of money to watch her “sing” on tour hahah ; )

  26. Camille

    In my opinion, the best of the three performances was the one in France, not only because I’m French, but also because I think it’s the one in which she had more energy

  27. i think this was her best performance yet. i actually cried a little at the end when she got her standing ovation. i agree with everyone in here on some level. but when you get down to it, the black and white of things, Britney did Britney. Whether she sang live or not, are you really there for the song to begin with? You want to see the person. You know what they sound like and if they can give you a great SHOW instead of just a singing concert, then why not. Wouldnt we all be a little disappointed if she took out more dancing to add more singing?? What i like the best is is that it doesnt matter, shes still gonna do britney, still make this “come back”, and thats that. other people-her fans, critics, etc. want her to succeed too bad for it not to happen at this point in time. Go Britney

  28. Chris

    I have to agree with Miss Trent. This was the best performance so far, and for someone who hasn’t been performing for the past couple years, I think she did a damn good job. I have no doubt that’s why they took her to Europe first, so she could get some practice in before performing in the States.
    And if you’re such a music purist concerned with live singing then don’t watch her.

  29. zzozo

    why even have the damn microphone?!?
    if shes singing backup on it then why can’t she answer the questions on it and not using the hosts?

  30. Lana

    I don’t see Britney to SING, I see Britney to PERFORM. If she can dance better while lipsyncing then I would rather see that. There are plenty of PERFORMERS who lipsync and they are just fine doing that. If you really have a problem with someone who lipsyncs, then don’t shell out the money to see them. The majority of those who don’t care will still support that artist (IE – Britney, we don’t care if she lipsyncs, quite obviously from the amout of fans/support/sales she has, I’m sure she will do fine without a bunch of whiny bitches who complain about everything). Thanks and have a nice day ;]]

  31. Monica

    No one loves Britney more than I do and I am always on her side, but I do think she should try to change up what she’s done in the past a bit. Beyonce is a good example right now since she has all that choreography in her new song. She mostly lets the recorded track do all the work while she’s dancing it out but she does interject a little singing just so we’re reminded that she’s live. Also, even though I find that dance routine annoying, she definitely gives it her all. High energy seems to be really in right now. If Britney had some kick-ass dance routine for her Womanizer performances, I don’t think anyone would say a word against her but she needs to have one or the other. If she has lots of time to stand around the stage, then she technically has time to try to sing. I think she’s just not confident in her singing which is too bad because I really believe she CAN sing well. I think she is coming back slowly but surely and will keep getting better. I can’t help but root for her!

  32. BB:

    Had NO IDEA about all the behind the scenes stuff with lipsynching, etc. Very interesting!

    Britney looks like Madonna in the action shots.

  33. This makes me cry. I’m so happy for her!!!

  34. BlissBoo

    Personally I think it’s WAY too early for Britney to be doing any of this. If one has to even question it, even a tiny bit it’s too early. The fact that she puts out sub-par performances, too early. Sorry (and I am no hater), but it’s clear she is going through the motions. There is no soul there. So what if she is smiling, it looks so contrived, painted on. People should know what a fake smile is. What’s the saying? “The lights are on, but no one is home.” Britney is known for lip-syncing, fine, then don’t sing, but if she is better known as a performer then she better perform and perform well. Not this half-cocked routine that people are going to excuse her for. No ‘baby steps’ excuses. Either take the time (years if need be) and come out with guns blazing. People can easily ‘forget’ the past few years after some time has past. Doing multiple ‘come back’s is also draining on the general public thus another reason why people ‘hate’ on her, such a lack of respect. We are burnt out on Britney’s drama.

    I, for one, am tired of her many ‘comebacks’ (how many does it take and why is it called a comeback when she never ‘left’). It’s a word to merely ‘excuse’ her bad behavior. Fans are enabling her and ultimately that began her demise. This is what I don’t understand. Those who truly love this girl should not make ANY excuses for her now. She should not be performing, doing press, these promo tours, etc. She is not ready. Her face, her eyes, so dead, still. The excuse of work keeps her going, really, how does one know, only Britney knows that. She has a TON of outside pressure to make her perform. Clearly there has to be some resentment there and I would imagine a huge reason of her breakdown. Besides, she has plenty of other ‘work’ to do, how about working on herself and more importantly her relationship with her children! People excusing her on this regard is an utter travesty. THINK about it.

    In the clips I have heard, she has yet to address HER fault in her ‘crazy’ year. I hear blame towards “Kevin”, “the press”, “I feel like a prisoner”, etc. There is slight regard, but hardly enough to prove that she really GETS it. The gravity of what has happened. The fact that she is under a permanent control CLEARLY shows that she is unfit. It would scare me if a friend of mine was in a similiar position and then trotted out like a show pony. So wrong. If she can’t even taken care of herself, is unable to be a FT Mother then WTF is she doing in front of the public? So wrong. I am not convinced that mental issues are in full stake here, there is a large percentage of Britney being out of control due to drugs (illegal substances), alcohol, and generally used to getting her way. Losing her mind is a convenient way to rebel in a way she wasn’t able to when she was younger.

    I am happy for her to see that she looks clean, much heathier than before, seemingly sober, but her performance(s) to me are a shallow reflection of Britney past. Enough of the ‘baby steps’ excuses, again, if those excuses have to even be used, it’s too early – period.

  35. jill

    To be honest I would much rather see Britney perform, than hear her sing. I think she did good in this performance. I saw a glimpse of the old Britney in the begining of her performance.

  36. jill

    Blissboo: Dont you think that the reason she went so crazy was because she wasnt in the lime light anymore. She had pretty much been on hiatus. People like Britney need that attention, need that hectic schedule to keep her sane in the first place. Its the only thing shes ever really known, so I think this is just what she needs.

  37. Jon

    I think the main reason people are bringing up the lip syncing thing is because she did it on a SINGING competition. She could have at least done some of the song live.

  38. hehe

    fuck u sarah.get a life.Britney’s the best!!!!

  39. lindyloo

    everyone needs to get a life and leave her the fuck alone!
    Love you Britney!

  40. That preformace was pretty shitty, the song was not played loud enough for it to of even of sounded real.
    I think she could of atleast made a propper effort and sang live, miley sand live, and she doesnt have half the experience of what britney has.

  41. i think that she’s not confident in her singing ability. she still looks nervous on stage although with this performance it looks like she’s getting her groove back. i’m sure people in her camp tell her to try and sing live but she refuses cause she’s too nervous or whatever. i still wish she would sing though.

  42. robin

    womanizer is so altered with sound machines and stuff there’s no way she could sing live and it sound remotely similar. i liked the performance where she was in red the best. i think this last one she had sturdier shoes on so she could run around a bit easier…though im still under-impressed with the dance routine…with all those rehearsal pictures we saw, you’d think the routine would be a little more complex…and since she’s not singing she should do even more dancing!

  43. Lori

    She looks fabulous!

  44. I dont think it matters if she lip synchs or not! I would rather hear the song as its suppose to sound rather than all breathless! The Jonas Brothers (who don’t even dance), sang burning up on the half time show during the Thanksgiving Day Cowboys game…obviously they weren’t lip synching but by the end of the performance they just sounded awful cuz you could hear how out of breath they all were!

  45. Natalie

    What bothers me by all of this Trent is that you for one said, Britney is NOT a singer.

    Okay, so if she is NOT a singer, then why does she put out an album if she can’t sing?

    That makes as much sense as saying Helen Keller puts out a line of eyeglasses, yet she can’t see!

  46. chase

    Natalie – I think what Trent means is that Britney is not a vocalist like Christina Aguilera; she is a singer but she is more of a performer/entertainer.

    Let’s face it, Britney doesn’t have the strongest voice out there, but she’s amazing when she performs. I would rather have Britney lipsynch than sing live! OY!

  47. Sara

    I just think it’s interesting that no matter what anyone thinks about Britney, the thing is, they ARE thinking about her. All you people who think it’s too soon for her to come back or are mad that she doesn’t sing live? Then ignore. Don’t spend 20 minutes typing out the reasons you think she’s still mentally unstable or how mad you are that she was a guest on a singing competition and didn’t sing live. Just move on down the page, and ignore it. Because no matter what you say, Britney is here to stay. Love her or hate her, you’re still paying attention to everything she does.

    I am really excited for this new stage in her life. I hope that she can balance all the renewed attention and work with her family. And I hope that she can regain her independence and be happy in her own life! I’m behind her all the way, and thank you, Trent, for keeping us updated on all the goodies. :)

  48. Joanne

    It’s obvious she needs her work, in order for her life to stay focussed – it is not for us to say that’s wrong. Britney has been working (and earning) since she was a child. Rightly or wrongly that is how her life and personality has been shaped. She will never be left alone (even if she wanted to walk away from fame) … so Brit may as well take control of her fame through her work.

  49. Janice

    That is one nice bum!! XD
    Team Britney!

  50. tOnnY

    I Honestly can’t believe all this negativity, i watched the performance, and then left cause i had to go out, and didn’t use the internet until now, and i thought, WOW all people are gonna be talking about how good she did, And i come here, and find people saying it was horrible, UGH it was amazing, i loved it, i was Crying of how good it was, i was like “OMG she’s BACK” and FYI she IS!!!!!!

  51. KT

    Go Britters! She looked amazing, definitely getting more confident with each performance. Had tears in my eyes when she got the standing ovation and when there were glimpses of the old Britney. LOVE LOVE LOVE her.

  52. L

    She was amazing! So much better, way more into it and confident! Loves!

  53. Rachael

    I totally agree that this was her best preformance out of the 3 shows in europe and that she is definitely getting her confidence back. She looks so bomb and her bod is definitely back! Sounds weird but Im so proud of her and so glad to have our Britney back! Of course we would have all liked to see more dancing but she still rocked it! Ya Britney! And to all you haters out there…well you can just suck it because you wouldnt last a day in her shoes!

  54. Nicola

    Her appearing on that show is a total MOCKERY of it. Only one will win from that show. The others may fade into obscurity, and not get the record deal what they deserve. Flaunting that being a doormat trainwreck who is totally okay with not having custody of her kids, in front of those people, is disgusting. Britney can’t sing. They can. They don’t lip-sync. That is sure as hell not how we do it in the UK. The best female singers and bands here, can actually sing, and they sing live when they perform.
    Typical Americans.

  55. Colette

    um…hate to say this but her perfomance really hasn’t gone down well over here and its not JUST because she lip-synced (although I think she’s the 1st one to do so on the X-factor) but also her comments – or lack of them – on the contestants performances. Honestly how much effort would it have taken for her to actually watch the show she was performing on.
    I haven’t seen her other european performances but if this is her most energetic one than she really is in trouble.

  56. Sel

    It was really exciting to see Britney performing again, and it was a good performance. If i’m honest I was kinda disappointed she didn’t sing live, simply because that is what the show she was on was about. I know she wasn’t there for that but it’s not as if she isn’t capable of it. Miley Cyrus performed earlier on the first show and she sang live.
    I don’t want to take anything away from Britney’s performance because performing is what she does best and it’s fantastic that she’s ‘back’ and doing what she loves…but it still would have been nice to hear her sing live.
    She didn’t really respond properly to the questions she was asked after she performed either, it was almost as if she wasn’t listening/paying attention.

  57. glitter

    she probably just rushed in, did the performance and left. her schedule must be pretty hectic. which is probably why she didn’t have much to say about the contestants’ performance?

    overall, i think she did well. :) the insults about the lip synching are so old, get over it already.

  58. Steph

    I don’t care whatever those haters say….

  59. Cait

    I agree with everyone that when you go to see a concert you expect to hear some singing. I guess I just don’t expect that from Britney. I’m not a huge fan or anything, but if I watch a performance by Britney at something like XFactor I mostly just expect to be entertained. So I guess it’s all about your personal expectations. Over the years I’ve come to expect lip-synching, so now I’m not disappointed.

    I listed to BBC Radio One this morning, though, and there were some pretty harsh things said about the performance on the Chris Moyles show and the Sarah Cox show. Seems a lot of people over there were disappointed with the show. Too bad :(

  60. Christina

    The response over here in the uk has been terrible! everyone is slating her for miming so it wasnt really much of a success was it?

  61. jambon

    it’s Cheryl COLE, not Coyle. Durr.

    Britney was super rubbish, really bad miming, crap song, she didn’t even know which country she was in. Typical pants american.

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