'We've not seen the last of X Factor Austin'

X FACTOR'S latest evictee has been praised by his former drama school who helped him on the path to stardom. A shell-shocked Austin Drage was voted off the ITV1 talent contest after finishing in the bottom two on viewers' votes on Saturday. The 22-year-ol

X FACTOR'S latest evictee has been praised by his former drama school who helped him on the path to stardom.

A shell-shocked Austin Drage was voted off the ITV1 talent contest after finishing in the bottom two on viewers' votes on Saturday.

The 22-year-old singer and actor was a student of Ridgeway Studios Performing Arts School, based in Cuffley, for 10 years from the age of eight.

Mentored by Simon Cowell, Austin failed to capture the public's hearts with his version of the Rose Royce disco classic Wishing On A Star.


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After the finalists competed in a disco music special, Austin and Rachel Hylton were left to battle it out to stay in the running.

He then performed the Dirty Dancing favourite Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow by the Shirelles.

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Louis Walsh, Cheryl Cole and Dannii Minogue decided to save Rachel and Simon backed his contestant.

Lynn Sawyer, principal of the Station Road branch of the performing arts school, believes we have not seen the last of her Essex-born former student.

She told the WHT: "It is sad that he was voted out before his time, but Austin will be inundated with offers from the industry.

"As disco week Austin would have preferred an upbeat tempo song and I do feel the song Wishing On A Star, although lovely, was not strong enough for him.

"But Austin has a talent and you can't take that away from him.

"Austin's a true performer with a great future!"

Less than 24 hours later, Austin was celebrating being top of the charts.

The X Factor finalists' single Hero, a cover of the Mariah Carey song, hit the UK No1 spot on Sunday night.

The record on which Austin has a solo sold more than 300,000 copies in its first week - outselling the rest of the top 10 combined.

It is also the fastest-selling charity single of the decade.

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