It’s always tough to send talented performers home with nothing, but NBC’s “The Voice” has always been a tough competition. After a night of innovative and emotional performances, America’s votes were tallied and two more were eliminated.
Jason Deruo helped open the night with India Carney and Kimberly Nichole singing “Want To Want Me.” It was a fun way to open a sad evening. With only the best performers of Season 8 remaining each week, it’s harder and harder to feel anyone deserves to be eliminated at this point. However, the show must go on and that means only six contestants could go forward.
After the performance, host Carson Daly brought the top eight to the stage to reveal the first person America’s votes sent to the next round. Oddly enough, it was Joshua Davis. Despite a lack-luster performance he ended up being America’s first to move on. After a brief commercial break, the final seven were brought out once again to reveal another safe singer. This time, it was significantly less surprising: 16-year-old prodigy Sawyer Fredericks. His song during last night’s performance round was innovative and a brave choice.
Each week the show prepares a small video segment to fill time between the reading of the names. However, this week it was much more than that as the contestants went to an elementary school to help paint it and perform for the students. The whole thing was a part of Starbucks’ Community Service promotion. It was capped with celebrity singers, and “The Voice” coaches, Pharrell Williams and Gwen Stefani surprising the kids and revealing a donation of musical equipment.
Then it was back to the live stage where the remaining six held hands waiting for the next saved name to be called. After one of her best performances of the season, which is saying a lot since she’s never had a bad one, Team Blake’s Meghan Linsey was the next to move on.
Following Linsey’s save was a dramatic back-to-back reading of saves for both Nichole and Koryn Hawthorne. Nichole has been one of the top artists for the past three weeks, but Koryn had one of her worst live shows to date. It was surprising to see her move ahead and leave Hannah Kirby, Corey Kent-White and India Carney to battle it out for the live save.
The first contestant to sing in the bottom three was the always-enchanting Kirby. After a showstopper last night, she toned things down a bit singing Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive.” The song was haunting but she gave it her typical mix of Amy Winehouse meets Janis Joplin and made a showing that really felt like someone’s fond farewell.
Following her was the only country singer represented on the show, Kent-White. He came out with his best foot forward, singing “Somebody Like You” by Keith Urban and reminding the audience how important it is to keep country in the competition.
Next up was the incomparable Carney, who sang “Human” by Christina Perri. Like Kirby, she sang with the passion and useful desperation of a singer who knows this could be her last time on the grand stage. The song was flawlessly performed, and there was a distinct twinkle in her eye as the audience cheered her on through the last note.
In the end, despite initially leaning in Kent-White’s direction, America’s tweets rescued Carney and sent her on to join the rest in the top six. Unfortunately for Kirby and Kent-White, this was the end of the road.
Next week the remaining six will perform live to stay in the competition another week. Tune in to NBC at 8 p.m. EDT to see it all go down.