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The Voice recap: First live eliminations

The first cut is the deepest.

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The Voice
Tyler Golden/NBC

The Voice

type:
TV Show
genre:
Reality TV, Music
run date:
04/26/11
performer:
Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, Gwen Stefani, Alicia Keys
broadcaster:
NBC
seasons:
12
Current Status:
In Season

All good things must come to an end, even on The Voice. After two stellar nights of live performances, it was time for the top 20 to become the top 12, as we said adieu to two contestants on each team. And with such an impressive crop of talent, there were a host of really great singers sent packing, among them Team Pharrell’s Elyjuh Rene, Team Gwen’s Ricky Manning and Team Adam’s Mia Pfirrman. Here’s how Wednesday night’s elimination round went down:

Team Blake

America saved: Reagan James and Craig Wayne Boyd. No surprise here: Both James and Boyd killed it during Monday’s live show, and are well on their way to becoming frontrunners of the competition.

Blake saved: Jessie Pitts. Good choice, Blake, can you imagine how many hearts would have been broken if the Birmingham cutie with the voice of an angel was sent home?

Going home: Taylor Brashears and James David Carter. Yes, both are excellent singers, but neither proved that Monday night: Taylor Brashears’ performance of “Long Time Gone” was a huge misstep, while James David Carter’s “Two of a Kind, Workin’ on a Full House” was fine, but just that.

Team Pharrell

America saved: Luke Wade and DaNica Shirey. Anyone on Pharrell’s team army deserves a spot in the top 12, and both Shirey and Wade have proved they have both the vocal dexterity and the personality to make it all the way.

Pharrell saved: Sugar Joans. Yes, Sugar Joans deserves a spot in the top 12, as her performance of Aretha Franklin’s “I Say a Little Prayer,” but that choice came with consequences…

Going home: Elyjuh Rene and Jean Kelley. I, for one, will sorely miss Elyjuh Rene, who was just starting to find his footing with his performance of “Latch” Tuesday night.

Team Gwen

America saved: Taylor John Williams and Anita Antoinette. While, in my opinion, neither Williams nor Antoinette had remarkable performances this week, America’s choices weren’t all that surprising. Williams is season 7’s token indie guy. And Antoinette is so amiable that it’s hard to want her gone.

Gwen saved: Ryan Sills. I was a little surprised that she didn’t pick Manning, but Sills is an equally solid choice, and given the fact that he finally broke out of his shell Tuesday night, he’s only bound to get better.

Going home: Ricky Manning and Bryana Salaz. I admit I’ve got a thing for Ricky Manning, but he hadn’t quite established his stage personality like Antoinette and Williams. And Bryana? Worry not, at 17, she’s got plenty of time.

Team Adam

America saved: Damien and Matt McAndrew. Two of my (and my fellow The Voice watcher and recapper Esther Zuckerman’s) favorite performers… no complaints here.

Adam saved: Chris Jamison. Based on his underwhelming performance Monday night, Adam’s choice in saving Jamison was a surprising one. Perhaps he chalked it up to Ed Sheeran’s “Don’t” just being a mismatch…

Going home: Taylor Phelan and Mia Pfirrman. Bottom line: Taylor Phelan, while vocally on point, was just never that memorable of a performer. Pfirrman and that formidable voice of hers were hard to say goodbye to. It was a huge risk on Adam’s part to let her go, but you know what they say about risks…

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