The Voice Season 17 Contestant, Gables Theater Student
By Lizzie Wilcox
Preston C. Howell is just 15-years-old but already a fan favorite on NBC’s “The Voice.” Howell, who attends Florida Christian School, began his musical journey at the age of 8. When he was 12, the Pembroke Pines native attended a performance at Coral Gables’ Area Stage Company. After seeing their production of Heathers: The Musical, he knew it was the kind of program he needed to join. “I wanted to go to a high-level performing studio,” he said. “They’re amazing at what they do. It’s like you’re almost on Broadway.”
Being a contestant on “The Voice.” He sang “Dream a Little Dream of Me” by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong during the blind auditions, where he got four chair turns, meaning all four coaches (Kelly Clarkson, Gwen Stefani, John Legend and Blake Shelton) wanted him on their team. He chose John Legend to be his coach. “I felt like he could help me the most in this type of competition,” Howell said.
What He Says
Howell says he didn’t actually intend to audition for “The Voice.” He just wanted to see what the process was like for when he auditioned in the future. When it became a bidding war between four music icons, he said it was “surreal,” but gave him the self assurance that he needed.
His mother added that they are “eternally grateful” to the Gables’ Area Stage Company. “What they provide is something that nobody else in South Florida does,” she says. On this whirlwind of a journey, Howell says, “It’s been a dream, honestly.”