Ella Henderson
Contestant Profile
Birth Date 12 January 1996 (age 20)
Hometown Tetney, Lincolnshire, UK
Occupation Former student


Category Girls
Mentor Tulisa Contostavlos
Placement 6/13
Gabriella Michelle "Ella" Henderson (born 12 January 1996) is an English singer-songwriter and pianist from Tetney, Lincolnshire who participated in Series 9 of The X Factor as part of the Girls category, mentored by Tulisa Contostavlos. She was controversially eliminated in Week 7 of the live shows, finishing in 6th place.

The X Factor

She impressed the judges and audience with her self-penned song "Missed", which she wrote in memory of her late grandfather. She was given four yeses and put through to bootcamp where she performed Cher's "Believe", even garnering praise on Twitter from the singer herself. She was put through to judges' houses as part of the Girls category mentored by Tulisa Contostavlos and selected as one of her Top 3 for the live shows.

Throughout the live shows she continued to impress with her vocals but in Week 7 found herself in the Bottom 2 alongside James Arthur, which stunned the public since both of them had been favorites to reach the final and she had been the bookies' favorite to win the series. As the judges' vote was deadlocked, the public vote revealed that she would be leaving the competition, thus finishing in 6th place.

The result caused a lot of controversy in the media, especially since Rylan Clark and Christopher Maloney had avoided the sing off. Odds for the latter to win and for the show to be axed were slashed. Presenter Dermot O'Leary called her elimination "one of the biggest shocks" in the show's history and named her as his favorite-ever contestant.


Episode Theme Song Result
Audition 1 Free choice "Missed" Advanced
Audition 2 Group performance "Midnight Train to Georgia" Advanced
Bootcamp Solo performance " Believe" Advanced
Judges' houses Free choice "I Won't Give Up" Advanced
Week 1 Heroes night "Rule the World" Safe (3rd)
Week 2 Love and heartbreak "Loving You/u>" Safe (4th)
Week 3 Club classics "You Got the Love" Safe (3rd)
Week 4 Halloween "Bring Me to Life" Safe (6th)
Week 5 Number-ones "Firework" Safe (5th)
Week 6 Best of British "Hometown Glory" Safe (4th)
Week 7 Guilty pleasures "You're the One That I Want" Eliminated (6th)

Post The X Factor

In December 2012, she confirmed in an interview that she had been signed to Sony Music and the following month she announced that she had signed a deal with Syco Music. She joined the other Top 8 finalists on tour and performed "Believe" at the National Television Awards. She also uploaded a series of songs to YouTube.

In March 2014, she announced details of her debut album "Chapter One", which would be preceded by the single "Ghost". The song was co-written by Ryan Tedder of the pop-rock band OneRepublic and the video was filmed in New Orleans. It was released in June and entered the UK Charts at #1 making her the second finalist from Series 9 to debut at the top of the singles chart after winner James Arthur. The single has gone on to sell over 1.2 million copies in the UK making it the third-biggest selling single by an X Factor UK act, behind Alexandra Burke's and James Arthur's winners' singles. The single has also proven to be a big hit throughout Europe and the US.

Follow up singles "Glow" and "Yours" also charted in the UK Top 20 and her debut album was released in November, peaking at #1 on the UK Album Charts. It has been certified platinum by the BPI. The album also includes her audition song "Missed".

At the 2015 BRIT Awards she was nominated Best British Female Solo Artist, losing to Paloma Faith, and Best British Single, losing to Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars' "Uptown Funk". The same year she was a guest vocalist on drum n bass duo Sigma's single "Glitterball" and Norwegian producer and DJ Kygo's single "Here for You", both of which were a Top 5 and Top 20 single in the UK charts. She also embarked on her first solo tour "The Chapter One Tour", which saw her play 35 dates throughout the UK.

In early 2017, it was announced that she would be supporting 'X Factor' winner and fellow finalist James Arthur on the November dates of his "Back from the Edge" tour. In June 2017, she featured along with other artists, including fellow X Factor artists Leona Lewis, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, James Arthur, Louisa Johnson and Matt Terry, on a cover version of Simon & Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water", which was recorded to raise money for those affected by the Grenfell tower block fire in London earlier that month.  The single reached #1 after only two days sales.

In October, it was confirmed that James Arthur had recorded a duet set to be included on her upcoming second studio album. She was his support act on his first arena tour the following month.

In February 2018, it was announced that she had parted ways with Syco Music.



Solo singles

  • Ghost (2014)
  • Glow (2014)
  • Yours (2014)
  • Mirror Man (2014)

As featured artist

  • Glitterball (with Sigma) (2015)
  • Here for You (with Kygo) (2015)
  • Bridge Over Troubled Water (with Artists for Grenfall) (2017)

Studio albums

  • Chapter One (2014)
Series 9 Finalists
Carolynne PooleChristopher MaloneyDistrict3Ella HendersonJade EllisJahméne DouglasJames ArthurKye SonesLucy SpragganMelanie MassonMK1Rylan ClarkUnion J