The Voice is in its 23rd season, and somehow each year the talent just keep getting better and better.
Last night the coaches heard from Ali, a 24-year-old soul-pop singer, who blew them away with her rendition of Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly With His Song.”
When Ali shared her story, everyone was stunned.
“I’m Ali, I am from Walnut, California, I’m 24 years old, and a fun fact about me is I’m hearing impaired. I wear two hearing aids; I was born deaf. I’m so blessed to be able to share this.”
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Everyone was quick to praise Ali and her ability to perform at such a high level despite her disability.
“Your runs were so intricate and cool and different. That’s a gift!” Kelly Clarkson said.
“You just have an amazing voice, and all the choices you were making felt very soulful,” Chance the Rapper said. “I’m just still so stunned to hear that you’re hearing impaired.”
Both he and Clarkson turned their chairs, while Niall Horan and Blake Shelton did not. Horan said they didn’t turn their chairs because they felt Ali would be in good hands with either Clarkson or Chance.
Ali’s father, a musician, told Carson Daly, he first realized his daughter had “profound hearing loss” when he hit a drum really loud and Ali who was a toddler at the time didn’t flinch.
“It was devastating,” Ali’s mom said.
Even though her parents found the news of her hearing loss devastating, Ali said her family “worked around it.”
“My parents, they never really looked at it like I was ‘broken,’” she said. “As much as I doubt myself, I’m going to do it. Even though I can’t really hear every single thing that’s going on, I can feel the music — what it means and what the lyrics are about — and I can also feel the beat. I can feel every little thing coming out of the speaker, and that’s how I’m able to do the things that I do. That’s my superpower.”
Watch Ali’s audition in the video below.
“I sing for the little girl with the sparkly hearing aids, in Walnut, California, singing along to Kelly Clarkson songs my Uncle Rich burned onto CDs for me,” Ali wrote on Instagram. “I sing for the people who have the same kind of story as me, for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community. I sing… I sing for You, Lord. I sing because I love it. This is me. This is my story.”
At the end of her audition Ali joined Team Kelly.
Watching Ali perform left me speechless. She represents an entire community who are rarely represented on television. So many people will now see their dreams are possible.
Please share to congratulate Ali and cheer her on!