Maxwell Thorpe: What next as Derbyshire busker seeks to match success of famous Britain's Got Talent runners-up

Derbyshire busker Maxwell Thorpe may have missed out on glory in Britain’s Got Talent but his sensational performances won him a host of fans.

By Robert Cumber
Thursday, 9th June 2022, 7:44 am
Sheffield singer Maxwell Thorpe finished as a runner-up on Britain's Got Talent 2022 (pic: ITV)
Sheffield singer Maxwell Thorpe finished as a runner-up on Britain's Got Talent 2022 (pic: ITV)

So what does the future hold for the 32-year-old, who went from performing for loose change on the streets of Bakewell and Chesterfield, to wowing the judges and an audience of millions on the hit ITV show?

Maxwell is a classically-trained opera singer, who performs opera, West End musical classics and opera-crossover versions of well-known hits.

The baritone regularly busks in Sheffield and surrounding areas, and has performed several times in concert with Stannington Brass Band.

He has a three-year-old son who lives in Norway with his mum, and he spoke on the show about how he hoped his success would one day inspire his boy to ‘follow his dreams’.

Despite the bookies’ favourite having to settle for a runners-up spot on Sunday, when comedian Axel Blake was controversially crowned the talent show’s 2022 champion, history suggests he shouldn’t be too disheartened.

After all, some of the biggest success stories from throughout the programme’s history have been the runners-up, while numerous winners failed to capitalise on their success.

Susan Boyle is surely the most famous runner-up in the history of Britain's Got Talent (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/Getty Images)

Here is what happened next for some of the show’s most high-profile runners-up.

Susan Boyle

There are many similarities between Susan Boyle and Maxwell Thorpe, who are both unassuming stars whose phenomenal singing talent stunned the audience when they first took to the Britain’s Got Talent stage.

Despite surprisingly only finishing runner-up to dance act Diversity in series three back in 2009, Boyle would go on to become a household name.

Her debut studio album, I Dreamed a Dream, became the UK's best-selling debut album of all time and she followed up that success with her subsequent releases, going on to sell more than 19 million albums worlwide and receiving two Grammy Awards nominations.

Jack Carroll

Comedian and actor Jack Carroll was just 14 when he finished as runner-up in series seven of Britain's Got Talent.

Jack, who has cerebral palsy, went on to appear in the CBBC series Ministry of Curious Stuff and starred in the Sky sitcom Trollied.

Stavros Flatley

The British-Greek Cypriot father-and-son dance duo, known for their blond wigs and leather trousers, reached the final of series three of Britain’s Got Talent.

Their public popularity endured and they continued to perform around the world as well as appearing on a number of TV shows including Celebrity Coach Trip and, after dad Demetrios was told he needed to lose weight, the 2017 show Sugar Free Farm.

Demetrios now reportedly runs a water sports shop in Cyprus, where son Michalakis 'Lagi' Andreas has a barber shop.


Flawless were also finalists on series three of Britain’s Got Talent, and the street dance troupe went on to enjoy great success.

Their Chase the Dream tour ran the following year and proved so popular they brought it back in 2011.

Flawless appeared in the 2010 film StreetDance 3D and 2012 sequel StreetDance 2, along with Britain’s Got Talent 2009 winners Diversity and 2008 champion George Sampson, and in 2012, they teamed up with Kylie Minogue at the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert.


Ash Gray, known as Gabz, reached the final of Britain's Got Talent in 2013 and went on to release his debut single Lighters, which reached number six on the UK Singles Chart, later that year.

He has released further singles and albums without ever repeating that initial success, though he has appeared in BBC talent series All Together Now, as one of the 100 judges.

Shaheen Jafargholi

Shaheen appeared in series two of Britain’s Got Talent, finishing behind George Sampson.

The Welsh actor and singer has since had major roles in EastEnders, on which he played Shakil Kazemi, and in Casualty, as nurse Marty Kirkby.

Jonathan and Charlotte

Classical duo Jonathan Antoine and Charlotte Jaconelli were in their teens when they finished as runners-up in the sixth series of Britain's Got Talent in 2012, losing out to dancing dog act Ashleigh and Pudsey.

They were reportedly offered a £1 million record deal by Simon Cowell on his record label Syco and released two albums, Together, in 2012, and Perhaps Love, in 2013, before splitting in 2014 to pursue their solo careers. Both albums peaked at number five in the UK charts.

They also appeared in a 2012 ITV documentary which followed their rise to fame on the talent show and what happened afterwards.

Calum Scott

Calum Scott made the final of series nine of Britain’s Got Talent in 2015.

The following year he released his version of Robyn’s Dancing on My Own, which he had performed on the talent contest. It peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart and became Britain's best-selling single of summer 2016, shifting more than 600,000 copies.

He subsequently signed with Capitol Records, and his 2018 debut album Only Human reached number 4 on the UK Albums Chart.

In July 2021, he teamed up with Lost Frequencies on the single Where Are You Now, which reached number three in the UK Singles Chart.