Simon Cowell will be grinding gears over Mika's life affirming show The Piano



If revenge really is a dish best served cold, then pop star Mika must have liquid nitrogen running through his veins.

Twenty years after Simon Cowell gave his demo tapes the old “It’s a no from me” treatment, the 39-year-old has – with the help of Channel 4 – slammed a musical torpedo into the next series of Britain’s Got Talent.

In just two episodes, Mika’s one-trick talent show The Piano has unearthed enough diamonds to fill a BGT semi.

Seriously, if he and his co-judge, piano virtuoso Lang Lang, find an alsatian or a chihuahua next week that can play Great Balls Of Fire in C Major, Cowell may as well pack up for the year.

Lucy left Mika and Lang Lang speechless on The Piano
Lucy left Mika and Lang Lang speechless on The Piano ( @Channel4)

Me calling The Piano a one-trick format isn’t a criticism, by the way.

It’s one of those brilliantly simple tricks that you cannot believe no one has thought of before. Channel 4 has installed cameras at railway stations across the country and invited performers to come and play a vacant piano.

The twist is they are being secretly watched from a hidden location by Mika and Lang Lang who pick one winner each week to perform at an upcoming gala concert at London’s prestigious Royal Festival Hall.

Mika, Claudia Winkleman and Lang Lang in The Piano
Mika, Claudia Winkleman and Lang Lang in The Piano ( ©Mark Bourdillon / Love Productions)

To grind Cowell’s gears even harder, Channel 4 has filled the show with contestants who could have kept him in sob stories for a good year or two. Here though, the tales are presented more as life-affirming joy.

From the blind and developmentally delayed 13-year-old Lucy and her flawless Chopin to grieving 71-year-old Liam and his homemade travelling piano trailer.

Holding it all together we have Claudia Winkleman, who is as perfect a host for this show as she was for BBC1 hit The Traitors.

Simon Cowell had the final say on the decision
Ian Hyland thinks Simon Cowell must be grinding his gears over The Piano ( PA)

On Wednesday, I particularly enjoyed the tactful way Claudia dealt with the judges’ request for one contestant, Christopher, to stop singing so they could concentrate on his piano playing.

She simply walked up to him and did the zipped mouth mime. Christopher shut up instantly.

Any chance you could repeat that trick a few times on Strictly this year, Claud?

No names here, but you know who I mean.

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