Performing on the X Factor was an item off the bucket list of a local performer.
Violinist Sarah Milner, 29, was recently in Worthing Theatres production of Made in Dagenham.
But on Saturday she swapped coast for Cowell and played in the X Factor final.
Sarah, who lives in Portslade, said: “A friend tagged me in a post on FB which said ‘violinists needed for a TV job’.”
When Sarah enquired she found out the show in question was the X Factor, so she sent in her details.
She added: “I never thought for one second that it would actually happen.”
But she got the call and was invited to London to be part of the huge finale, performing with runner-up Grace Davies.
“It was such a great experience, Grace’s voice was absolutely amazing.
“I was sitting there with Simon Cowell right in front of me. Sharon Osborne smiled and gave me a thumbs up.
“As soon as I got on the train on the way home I watched it, it was a really weird experience.”
She said she would love to do it again, but is content to cross it off her bucket list.
Sarah, who is also well known for performances in the Southwick area, runs a business performing at weddings in Sussex and also performs at nursing homes.