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Britain’s Got Talent denies claims that a contestant stole star act

Magician Carl Leek claims he performed an identical trick to eight-year-old contestant Issy Simpson - first!

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Britain’s Got Talent producers have strongly denied claims that eight-year-old magician Issy Simpson ‘stole’ one of her tricks from another magician who had auditioned for the same series.

Furious Carl Leek is reportedly calling in the lawyers after Issy performed a “carbon copy” of one of his tricks.

Issy’s performance was aired on TV, but Carl’s wasn’t – even though he had got a “yes” from each of the all four judges and had auditioned before Issy.

“Issy Simpson came to Britain’s Got Talent with her own routine and magic performance prepared, which she then duly performed at her audition,” said a BGT spokesperson.

“Any suggestion otherwise would be completely false.”

Read more: Britain’s Got Talent could be changing the live show format 

Viewers saw Issy perform a trick in which she asked Simon to choose a card from a deck. She then unzipped her top to reveal a T-shirt with an image of Simon holding up that same card.

Carl claims he had the same routine, which he had discussed extensively with producers before performing it. “It’s ludicrous,” he told The Sun. “The routine is literally a carbon copy.

“My act was built around the T-shirt and I have emails from producers sending me images of Simon I could legally use as my first printed T-shirt was refused.

“I worked with a producer on a daily basis up until the audition, basically forwarding routines and getting them approved as they didn’t want anything that had been done similar in past shows.”

Carl added that his audition had been in Birmingham, a week before Issy’s audition in Manchester.

He blames “Simon and the show’s platform,” adding that Issy is “innocent in all this”.

Read more: BGT act forced to deny he stole routine after accusation from rivals

It’s not the first time the talent competition has been accused of stealing. Comedy circuit veterans Raymond and Timpkins claimed comedian Adam Keeler had nicked their act.

“Oh dear, shame on you BGT and Adam Keeler – how clever of you all to put on an act that blatantly copies our set,” they wrote.

The duo, who have been performing together for more than 20 years, also revealed that they’d previously been invited to take part in the show.

“Either BGT have trawled the net to find someone willing to do our act for them in light of our constant refusals or Adam has seen our act, copied it badly and then decided to apply,” they said

Comedian Jason Manford was quick to support their claims. “Was disappointed to see Adam Keeler totally lift an entire comedy routine from circuit favourites The Raymond and Mr Timpkins Revue,” he wrote.

“The original is one of the most joyous acts on the circuit.”