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JLS does 'farewell' concert in London; group members give emotional goodbyes

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On Dec. 22, 2013, JLS gave a "farewell" concert at the O2 Arena in London. But is the group really breaking up for good? A lot of JLS fans believe that JLS will eventually reunite.

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As previously reported, JLS announced in April 2013 that the group was amicably disbanding at the end of the year after a farewell tour in the United Kingdom. JLS came in second place on "The X Factor" U.K. in 2008. The group had its biggest success (several No. 1 hits and sold-out arena tours) in the U.K. and Ireland. In addition, JLS made millions from merchandise sales, including JLS fragrances and condoms.

In 2011, JLS starred in the 3-D concert documentary "Eyes Wide Open," which released in cinemas in the U.K. and Ireland. In November 2013, the JLS greatest-hits album "Goodbye" was released.

The four members of JLS are Oritsé Williams, Marvin Humes, JB Gill and Aston Merrygold. Williams plans to do solo music and continue to manage other artists. Humes is the host of "The Voice" U.K. and a host on the U.K.'s Capital Network. Merrygold is a judge on Sky 1 HD's "Got to Dance" and plans to release a solo album. Gill is the only one who seems to be leaving the entertainment business, since he has said in interviews that his post-JLS plans are to devote himself full-time to being a farmer.

According to The Huffington Post, former "X Factor" judge Cheryl Cole and One Direction members Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson were in the audience at JLS's "farewell" concert. Humes' wife, Rochelle, who is a member of the Saturdays, was also at the show.

After the concert, the members of JLS took to Twitter to express their thoughts:

Williams tweeted: "IM so GRATEFUL!!! THANK u THANK u Alll!!!!!!!"

Gill tweeted: "That was alot... I went fully in with the stage love in that show...So many amazing messages already! Definitely going on with a bang…"

Merrygold tweeted: "That hit me like a f*cking hurricane! But Seriously from the bottom of my [heart] thank u! For now I'll say 'see you later' forget goodbye! #love."

JLS's "farewell" 2013 concert tour has gotten mixed-to-positive reviews from critics.

The London Evening Standard's Andre Paine gave 3 out of 5 stars to the Dec. 22 concert at the O2 Arena and noted: "Compared to previous JLS tours featuring a robot and flying car, it was also a frugal production that seemed reliant on Merrygold's naked chest and backflips. JLS were playing with a band for the first time, though, and there was a funk finesse to their cover of Bruno Mars's 'Treasure.'

"'Beat Again' showed them at their sharpest, while soppy Boyz II Men ballad 'End of the Road' was accompanied by nostalgic 'X Factor' footage. Merrygold couldn't keep his emotions in check during 'Everybody in Love,' though composed himself for a final farewell. JLS didn't quite go out on a high, but it was a tearful send-off that provided closure for their young fans."

The Manchester Evening News' Liz Forbes gave 4 out of 5 stars to the Dec. 14 concert at the Phone 4 U Arena in Manchester, England, and said this in the review: "At times, ‘the arena was alive’ as the group dance and back flip through their tunes, still managing to keep the singing strong, then they bring it down a notch as pictures are projected behind them from various significant moments in their career. And there is plenty of connecting with the audience, too, as they tell them how grateful they are for their support."


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