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September 16, 2014

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Five thoughts from ‘The Voice: On Tour’ at MGM Grand Garden Arena

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Associated Press

Frenchie Davis owned the MGM Grand Garden Arena stage during the Las Vegas stop of “The Voice: On Tour” on Saturday, July 30, 2011.

From "The Voice: On Tour" at MGM Grand Garden Arena on Saturday night:

The bald and the beautiful: Beverly McClellan and Frenchie Davis, the bald ladies from Team Christina (Aguilera), easily gave the night's best performances. McClellan woke up the sometimes-sleepy crowd with her high-energy rendition of "Baba O'Riley" by The Who. Later, Davis (who once made a run on that other TV singing show) brought the energy back with her take on Madonna's "Like a Prayer" and was rewarded with a thunderous ovation that she accepted giggly.

Stop, collaborate and listen: A love fest broke out between McClellan and Nakia as they held hands tackling Aguilera's smash "Beautiful," replacing pronouns with the other's name as Javier Colon backed them on guitar. Vicci Martinez and McClellan offered Casey Weston percussion support on KT Tunstall’s "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree," while Weston and McClellan teamed up on guitar in support of an otherwise-vanilla performance of Jessie J's "Pricetag" by Xenia. All eight artists opened the show with a George Michael medley of "Freedom"/"Faith" and closed it with Michael Jackson's "Man in the Mirror."

The Voice: Colon reminded why he deserved to win Season One of the competition with soulful performances of "Time After Time" by Cyndi Lauper, "Fix You" by Coldplay and "Stitch by Stitch," his debut single. He closed the show with "Don't Stop Believing," which the crowd selected via text message voting during the concert.

A homecoming of sorts: Dia Frampton, who briefly attended Shadow Ridge High School in Las Vegas, seemed to have come out of her shell since being named runner-up. Her individual performances of "Heartless" by Kanye West, "Losing My Religion" by R.E.M. and her original, "Inventing Shadows," were met with cheers and applause that suggested she was as much a crowd favorite as Colon.

Bueller? Despite runaway success on television, the MGM Grand Garden Arena may have been too ambitious a venue for "The Voice" to fill on its first tour. There appeared to be a couple hundred empty seats, including some on the floor, in an already reduced-capacity seating chart.

This story first appeared in our sister publication Las Vegas Weekly.

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