The X Factor Live Tour 2012 - tickets on sale Friday 10th June 2011
With characteristic chutzpah, tickets for The X Factor Live Tour 2012, featuring the finalists from 2011's Series 8, go on sale on Friday 10th June - around six months before the winner has been chosen.
In fact, the series won't start for another three months or so. But don't be fooled into thinking that The X Factor's appeal is limited to the autumn run-up to Christmas and the annual battle for the festive No 1. As the first batch of tickets go on sale, X Factor fever will already be running high across the UK with the auditions kicking-off at the same time. It's almost as if it has been planned that way.
Add to that the on-going pantomime of who will judge what, the apparent global interest in the US version of the show and the popularity of its ugly sister, Britain's Got Talent, and you've more than enough noise to perpetually sustain the careers of several fading pop stars and record company suits.
The eighth series will see a new line-up of judges, with only Louis Walsh surviving. Simon Cowell is 'concentrating' on the US show, Cheryl Cole is not and Dannii Minogue has been usurped by Kelly Rowland. Kelly and Louis are joined by Tulisa 'N-Dubz' Contostavlos and Gary Barlow, who is already being far too nice to everyone and the show hasn't even started yet.
Love it or loathe it, The X Factor remains a big deal. It attracts high viewing figures, garners endless publicity for anyone who has anything to do with it, sells millions of records and makes a fortune for Cowell and ITV in the process. ITV's 2010 revenues from The X Factor alone are reported to be in excess of £115M.
Once the dust has settled, the contracts signed, the votes counted and the lines closed, The X Factor will have its latest king or queen. There will be a brief tabloid storm, some gently toned down guest performances from Gaga et al and then, only then, The X Factor Live Tour 2012.
You can see your favourite acts when the tour begins in Manchester at the MEN Arena on 25th February, before heading to Manchester, Liverpool, Nottingham, Aberdeen, Glasgow, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Sheffield, Birmingham, Brighton and Cardiff. Londonders north and south [or should that be "norf an' souf"? - Ed] get a double-dose, with the tour hitting Wembley Arena on 4th March and the O2 Arena on 31st March.
Tickets will be available for the dates from 9AM on Friday 10th June. Last year's sold-out X Factor Live Tour was seen by nearly a million people, so expect plenty more opportunity to catch this year's Steve Brookstein in action.