Her audition: We Ani McDonald, 17, of Harlem, N.Y., auditioned with a fine rendition of “Feeling Good,” starting out a cappella and delivering a big ending. Well before that ending, three coaches were facing in her direction. Adam Levine turned near the end, making We the first four-chair turn recipient of Season 11. Alicia Keyes said she couldn’t believe how good We’s voice is; We decided to become a member of Team Alicia, saying everything she heard from her new coach “felt honest and real.”
Her background: We told the coaches she was bullied in school for the longest time. “I was ashamed of who I was,” We said. According to her Voice bio, the teasing was because of the thick glasses she wore and her high speaking voice. She started singing when her older sister expressed an interest in performing, and got her start in music by joining her at talent shows. Since then, We has performed at Carnegie Hall, The Lincoln Center and the Apollo Theatre and decided to make a career of music.
What the show didn’t show:
* According to a profile in Tween Girl Style Magazine, We began singing at age 4 and began acting at age 6.
* She told the site she comes from a long line of singers and entertainers, “so singing is in my blood. At one point, I felt very alone and I didn’t know how to express my feelings. I found a way to do that through music and I wanted to touch other people who felt the way I did.”
* She’s been attending the Harlem School of the Arts and performed at its 50th anniversary gala in October.
* She’s a two-time winner of Amateur Night at the Apollo and finished second in the venue’s Top Dog Amateur Night in November.
* She’s a past recipient of the Clive Davis Institute’s Future Music Moguls Merit Scholarship at NYU.