Christopher Maloney, the 2012 “X Factor” contestant who moved thousands to tears by overcoming his stage fright, has opened up a performing arts school. Some people in the U.S. have just recently got wind of his stellar voice and moving story after his audition began to go viral on Facebook, but Maloney actually made the finals back in December 2012 on Britain’s “X Factor.”
Now, he explained he started Dance and Drama Academy at Kirkdale Community Centre in Liverpool to help give young entertainers in his community a chance to reach their potential. “When I look back to when I was growing up there was nothing like this for kids to do,” Maloney told Liverpool Echo on Tuesday. “I wanted to give other people some of the opportunities I was lucky enough to find through X Factor.
"The response has been fantastic – everyone who has heard about it has wanted to help. We’ve had messages of support from Cilla Black, Paul O’Grady, JANE McDonald and of course my mentor Gary Barlow,” he added.
Maloney was a fan favorite when he appeared on the show, and some even thought he was a shoo-in for the win, but quit before the finale, the Daily Mail reported. Rumors swirled the 34-year-old showed up late to auditions and wreaked of alcohol.
“Everyone is completely fed up of his behavior. He was abusive to the production team and other contestant,” a source told The Sun at the time. “He said he was leaving and didn't want to perform in the final tonight.”
But Maloney seems to have put the negativity behind him and has been promoting his new academy on Twitter.
— Chris Maloney (@ChrisMaloney77) June 11, 2014