Opera Duo Gets Fastest Chair Turn EVER On ‘The Voice UK’ [VIDEO]

The-Voice-UK-Carla-Maney-Barbara-Kelly-Carla-and-Barbara-opera-singersSamantha Agate | Talent Recap

Carla Maney and Barbara Kelly auditioned for The Voice UK in 2013 with a beautiful rendition of “The Flower Duet.” The opera singers literally sang one note of the song before getting their first chair turn. It all happened in the blink of an eye. Check out this iconic Blind Audition below.

Opera Singers Carla Maney and Barbara Kelly Wowed ‘The Voice UK’ Coaches

Carla, 47, suffered from laryngitis in her late 20s which led to her losing her voice. It took her years to recover and she was finally ready to share her talent with the world again. She was joined by Barbara, 55 who she met on tour in 2003. The pair were ready to sing their hearts out, and had will.i.am pressing his button as they sang the first note of the song. This was one of the quickest chair turns in The Voice UK history.

The other judges chatted during the Blind Audition about what they can do with two opera singers on their teams. Just then, Jesse J, Danny O’Donoghue and Tom Jones all hit their buttons and turned their chairs. They sat with smiles on their faces as they watched the two women show everyone that they have what it takes to win The Voice UK.


Carla and Barbara made their love for Tom clear but ultimately ended up choosing to be on Team will.i.am. In the Battle Rounds, this classical duo went up against Leanne Jarvis singing “Hero.” Leanne was named the winner of The Battle.

Many fans in the comments section of this video said that Carla and Barbara’s voices were not highlighted enough in this performance. “Should have picked something semi-operatic (e.g. the prayer) or Broadway to make it a fair battle” one person suggested. “Not fair for those two opera singers. Very bad song choice” another fan wrote in the comments.

Where Are They Now?

After performing on The Voice UK, the pair have continued pursuing their opera careers. According to her website, Carla performs at theaters, does music tributes, dance shows and sings at corporate events. Barbara and Carla have not posted much together on their Facebook page since 2014. The pair did a few local performances and gigs together that can be seen on YouTube.

Carla also moved many people when she shared a story about how she was shot in a crossfire when she was just 11 years old. She was shot in the leg during a shootout before her father rushed her to safety. Even as an adult, Carla still suffers trauma from that 1976 attack but definitely has the love and support from those around her.


It is not often that we see opera singers come onto The Voice UK. Of course it’s the coaches job to highlight these singers abilities and try their best to give them good advice. Do you think Carla and Barbara got a fair chance during The Battles?


Samantha Agate
Samantha Agate

Samantha Agate is a contributor and host for Talent Recap on YouTube with a previous byline at The Blast. She graduated from Hunter College in 2019 with a degree in Media Studies and a Concentration in Journalism. When she isn't binge-watching reality television shows or binge-eating fried food, she loves hanging out with her friends and family and petting puppies.

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