NEWS-SENTINEL EDITORIAL: Northeast Indiana-area well represented on ‘The Voice’ again

Christiana Hicks of Fort Wayne advanced to the Top 11 Tuesday night on "The Voice." (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)
Addison Agen performs the song "Humble and Kind" during the live performance show finals Monday night on "The Voice." (Courtesy of NBC)
Nik Roach, center, of Fort Wayne, talks with "The Voice" TV show host Carson Daly after Daly announced Roach had won the "The Voice" on Snapchat vocal competition during "The Voice" results show Tuesday night on NBC. At left is Adam Levine, the celebrity coach who selected Roach as one of his "The Voice" on Snapchat team members. (Photo by Trae Patton/NBC)

The current crop of Fort Wayne area singing talent deserves another spirited pat on the back.

On Dec. 26 we praised the successful efforts of Concordia High School junior Addison Agen, who at age 16 had just finished second overall on the NBC vocal talent show “The Voice” to Chloe Kohanski in high-pressure competition before millions of TV viewers week after week.

Since then, two more local singers have made their mark on the national competition, Christiana Hicks and Nik Roach.

Hicks, 23, who competed as Christiana Danielle, was one of two contestants eliminated on May 8 in an attempt to make it to the Final 8 of the competition. The Snider High School and Huntington University graduate competed with two other contestants as the three with the lowest vote totals during overnight voting by show viewers and fans. News-Sentinel.com reporter Kevin Kilbane wrote that the three had one more chance that night to sing and inspire viewers to use Twitter and the show’s Instant Save to keep them on the show.

Hicks’ performance had her celebrity coach, Alicia Keys, giving her a standing ovation.

“Your instincts are spectacular,” said Keys, who added that the audience in the studio and watching at home won’t see anything like Hicks’ approach from any other contestant.

But Keys’ appeal and Hicks’ performance failed to gain support during the overnight voting. Viewers and fans saved Rayshun Lamarr from coach Adam Levine’s team, sending Hicks and Team Adam’s Jackie Verna home.

Hicks said her success on the show and working with Keys “really has inspired me,” and she pledged to keep pursuing a career in music and to remain unique as a performer.

Roach, meanwhile, actually took “The Voice” stage as a champion on May 1. The 17-year-old junior at Norwell High School in Ossian was announced as the national winner of this season of the “The Voice” in Snapchat vocal competition, a shortened version of the hit TV show that takes place using the Snapchat social media website.

Roach told News-Sentinel.com that he sent in an audition video in January and was selected among the top 20 contestants. Coach Levine picked Roach as one of his two team members for the Snapchat competition, and viewer voting carried him to victory through a battle round and Final Four competitions.

“I want people to actually recognize me for my music and singing,” Roach said in an email to Kilbane prior to the announcement of his victory. “I just want singing to be the biggest part of my life. I really aspire to make this my career.”

He told News-Sentinel.com he next plans to audition for the TV version of “The Voice” and hopes to go far in the competition.

As we did with Addison Agen, we wish Roach and Hicks good luck in their singing careers in the future. They have helped put the national spotlight on Northeast Indiana.

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