Local worship leader gets picked for a spot on 'The Voice'

Joshua Vacanti, a Lockport native, sings on "The Voice." He was chosen by John Legend to join his team for the rest of the show and said when one person in Lockport succeeds, it feels we all did. He's very thankful to all the support. (Photograph by Tyler Golden/NBC)

Joshua Vacanti comes from “A very musical family.”

Starting out singing at local churches, today, Vacanti, who worships at The Chapel at Crosspoint, continues his musical journey as a contestant on “The Voice.”

Growing up, Vacanti was encouraged to sing solos, join choirs and eventually join the worship team. In school, he sang and performed in local shows and today is a worship leader in his own right.

“Just singing at that church and local churches around, it really fostered me,” Vacanti said in a phone interview. “My family has a deep history in serving in youth ministries, and I think that inspired a lot of the music I do, even now, later in life.”

While it wasn’t a Christian ballad that Vacanti sang as part of the “Blind Audition” portion of the show, it was an uplifting Disney tune from "Frozen II," and judges quickly perked up. At the end of the song, John Legend had picked the worship leader from Lockport as a part of his team.

“During the audition I was so beyond nervous,” Vacanti said. “Everyone that’s involved with ‘The Voice’ is supportive and giving, it’s such a safe environment and they warn you that the blind audition is something unlike anything you’ll ever go to.

“The moment I walked on that stage, I felt a level of nerves I’d never experienced in my whole life and I kind of blacked out. I don’t remember singing.”

Vacanti said he was pleased with the results. John Legend’s “block” of another coach, Ariana Grande, who also wanted Vacanti on her team, was also a huge endorsement as Legend can only do that once during the blind audition portion of the show.

Soon after the episode was over, Lockport community members were talking about the show. At the Lockport Palace Theater, part of the electric sign showed Vacanti’s face and words of congratulations.

“Buffalo is known as the City of Good Neighbors, and they’ve always supported people,” Vacanti said. “When anyone from Lockport or Western New York meets success, we all feel that success together and I think that has happened for me. The messages on social media and businesses – the Palace Theater has me on the marquee – I definitely felt the love and support thought the experience and for all my time singing locally.”

“If I could say anything, it would just be, ‘Thank you!’ It means so much, every message and all the support is just really really incredible and I just appreciate all of it.”

What now?

“There are still some episodes of ‘Blind Auditions,’ but after that is done we’ll go into the ‘Battle’ rounds. I’ll be paired with someone else on my team and we’ll have a duet,” Vacanti said. “Hopefully both of us can survive, and not get knocked off the team.”

Vacanti can be followed @joshuavacanti on Instagram.

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