The Voice Nigeria really should adopt the elimination process used by The Voice US in the live shows. The currently running Season 13 is the first The Voice edition that I’ve followed week after week, and in the process, I learned something about its live show eliminations that both surprised and intrigued me. The talents aren’t voted out based on the teams they belong to. They are voted out based solely on their performances. That is, each coach might enter the live shows with three talents each, but when the public votes, elimination doesn’t recognise which talent is in which coach’s team. The host doesn’t say, “Okay, for Team Jennifer, Shi’Ann will be leaving us today, while from Team Adam, Jon Mero will be leaving us.”
No. The talents are eliminated based solely on individual votes – which means that all of the talents in Team Blake might rank the highest in votes and will move on to the next round, and if all of Team Miley rank lowest in the votes, they can all get eliminated.
Because of this style of elimination, after the just concluded semifinals, we have Team Blake with two talents, Team Miley with one talent, Team Adam with one talent, and Team Jennifer with no talent. No not one. Nil. Zip. Zilch!
This has got to be embarrassing for her, a woman who swaggered into this season of The Voice US with all the braggadocio of someone who won the last season of The Voice UK. I’d like to think that if she were to come back next season, she’d work harder to ensure a place in the finals.
And THAT is the point I’m making with The Voice Nigeria. After the disastrous last season, it was evident to all Nigerian viewers that the coaches were collectively bad at their jobs: unserious, uninvested, self absorbed, ignorant (or unknowledgeable) of what to do with their talents, a joke of musical tutelage that ended in the worst The Voice finale there ever has to be worldwide.
And I think part of this unseriousness and obvious lack of dedication to refining their talents comes from the complacency of the coaches. After all, in the finale, they’ll all each have a talent in the Top 4.
But if elimination disregards the coaches and rests solely on the performance of the talents, if the coaches realize they’d face a possible embarrassment of advancing to the finals with no talent, if Patoranking for example comes face to face with the reality that in the finale, he’ll be passing his “intelligent” opinions to only contestants from other teams, they will buckle up. They will do their jobs better. I mean, think about Yemi Alade advancing to the Top 4 finale with two contestants and Waje with the other two; you think Timi will sit through the uncomfortable process of such a finale and not come back the following season with a determination to stop being so self absorbed and actually work on his team?
This kind of elimination also ensures that the only talents that advance to each stage are the best talents. Period. Not the best talents in each coach’s team. No. The best talents in each stage of the show. Period!
If a majority of that best are chocked full in, say, Yemi Alade’s team, excellent. It’d be better than having an average from Patoranking’s team coming to be on par with and advancing to the next stage with the others’ bests. It’s not only insulting to hard work; it’s a celebration of mediocrity.
If you’ve been following The Voice US, you would observe the undeniable graduation in pure talent, pizzazz and on-stage electricity of the contestants. Every one of the contestants that made it to the semifinals gave performances that were such a far cry from their blind auditions, it was almost magical.
But it’s not magical. It was evidence of all the work their coaches put in them, the dedication the coaches put in not only producing a winner of The Voice but an accomplished singer and performer who may not win The Voice but could still go on to have a career in music.
But with the last season of The Voice Nigeria, it was almost painful to watch how each new episode, each advanced stage saw most of the talents declining, as if they were better off not even getting past the blinds. It makes you wonder if the coaches understood fully their responsibilities when they agreed to sit on those big red chairs.
When you hear Blake Shelton tell a contestant, “I’m gonna help you be the best singer you can be”, you believe him.
When you hear Timi Dakolo say the same words, you just want to roll your eyes and change channels to Africa Magic.
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