Olly Murs says he suffered a panic attack after forgetting his lyrics on TV

Tom Beasley
Contributor
Olly Murs attends the The Global Awards with Very.co.uk at Eventim Apollo, Hammersmith on March 07, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

Olly Murs has revealed he suffered a panic attack and “couldn’t breathe” after he forgot his own lyrics on stage before a performance on The Graham Norton Show.

The star, who shot to fame when he came in second place on The X Factor in 2009, told the Daily Mirror that the room began spinning and he was paralysed by fear as he prepared to perform.

He said: “My heart was pounding and I couldn’t breathe. I’m standing behind the mic and I’m talking trying to calm myself down, thinking: ‘What’s going on? I’ve never ever been like this’. It was genuine panic.”

Read more: Murs reveals he’s still not speaking to estranged twin

The 34-year-old Wrapped Up singer also said he suffered a “sudden, overwhelming panic” when he received the call confirming he was set to join The Voice as a coach.

Jennifer Hudson, Wil.i.am, Sir Tom Jones and Olly Murs from The Voice UK visit Heat Breakfast on January 4, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)

Murs said he sought therapy after these events and has been able to trace them back to his ill-fated gig as co-host of The X Factor in 2015 alongside Caroline Flack.

He said: “I tried to piece it together myself but I couldn’t. It made me feel down and I said: ‘I need to go and see someone about this’.”

Read more: Murs caught up in shop evacuation

Murs and Flack took over from previous host Dermot O’Leary, who reclaimed the job the following year after heavy criticism of the replacements.

His experience with therapy suggested that the X Factor hosting experience may have been behind his anxiety attacks.

Olly Murs performs live on stage during ‘Music 4 Mental Health’ at The Roundhouse on November 18, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Simone Joyner/Getty Images)

“It was the idea of going on TV again, maybe making a mistake and being put in the spotlight again with people saying negative things about me,” he said.

“I’ve only ever had a career that’s been so positive. And when you get that little bit of negativity, it hurts.”

Read more: Where are the winners of The Voice now?

Murs said he believes men are “too scared” to talk about their mental health struggles.

The singer is now part of the way through his second series as a coach on The Voice UK and released his sixth studio album You Know I Know in November 2018.