By LUCY BUCKLAND
Performance: Malakai Paul breaks down onstage during the audition process
A 9-year-old singer broke down in floods of tears onstage during his Britain's Got Talent performance, sparking accusations from children's charities of exploitation.
Thousands of viewers are set to tune in tonight to watch as young singer Malakai Paul breaks down as he performs Beyoncé's Listen.
Although he was eventually comforted by his mother and judge Alesha Dixon, children's charities have slammed producers for allowing the youngster to perform.
The young star eventually overcame his nerves after Alesha went up onstage and asked him: 'Are you alright sweetheart? You did so good.'
And he is even branded 'brave' and a 'star' after he manages to complete an emotional audition on tonight's show. David Walliams described the youngster as a 'total star', while Dixon praises the boy's 'natural raw talent'.
Trying his luck: John Fordham, whose father was killed in 1985, will be appearing on Britain's Got Talent tonight as part of jazz band The Jive Aces
A smiling Simon Cowell adds: 'I've got to tell you, what I like about you - you're brave, you know. You got off to a bad start but you picked yourself up and people are going to like you a lot.' But speaking to The Daily Mirror, Peter Bradley, of charity Kidscape, said: 'Year after year we see kids breaking down on BGT all for the sake of entertainment.'
BGT refuted the allegations, telling the paper, they have stringent procedures in place for dealing with children on their shows.
Speaking to Ant & Dec backstage afterwards Digital Spy reports Malakai admits that he is 'proud' of himself for pulling through the audition and completing the song.
Other contenders for the BGT crown include the son of an undercover police officer who was stabbed to death by notorious criminal Kenneth Noye is to appear on Britain’s Got Talent tonight.
Warm reception: Judging by the judges' response John's band pulled off a smashing performance
He has admitted that his dad would have been ‘immensely proud’ of him.
John Fordham, 48, whose father of the same name, was killed in 1985 after carrying out surveillance on Noye in the grounds of his home, will be appearing on the ITV show as part of jazz band The Jive Aces.
Britain's Got Talent airs tonight at 8.30pm on ITV1.