When Xanthe Campbell auditioned for The Voice, she never imagined she’d make it as far as the semi-finals.
The Canberran’s journey began when her performance in the blind audition prompted two of the judges to spin their chairs, leading to her being mentored by British singer-songwriter Rita Ora throughout the season.
The 17-year-old has now been selected as one of Rita’s top two contestants, making it through to the next round of the show.
“My reaction on TV was my genuine reaction, I was extremely shocked,” Xanthe said.
“I really didn’t expect Rita to first of all send me straight through. Then to get that opportunity to be in her top two is just crazy. I feel so honoured to work with the rest of the artists in the top eight.”
The next episode airs this Sunday (22 May), where each mentor will be asked to pick one person from their team to compete in the finals.
Xanthe will be performing the song ABCDEFU by pop-artist Gayle.
“It’s going to be such a big set, we really go all out and I’m just so excited for people to see it,” she said.
“You will see that there’s a bit of drama in the next episode … it really comes down to faith and putting my trust in Rita.
“They completely changed my style in the last episode. It was kind of cool though, because I didn’t think I had the popstar appeal as well.”
The first thing Xanthe said she looked for in a song was what she could pull emotionally from it.
“I didn’t see that straightaway with this song, so I got really anxious,” she said.
“I think some of the other people have had it a bit easier on the show because they were given genres that suited their style, whereas my songs were completely different.
“I’m also not quite used to the upbeat, fast tempo which scared me a bit … but I’m happy that I was put out of my comfort zone because it was actually more beneficial, it showed that I could be more versatile and could put my own twist on the song.”
Reflecting on her time on The Voice so far, Xanthe said every performance was a great opportunity and experience and had taught her new skills.
“I think the main lesson for me is realising that I can actually get to a certain level, and it feels insane for someone young like myself to be in this high calibre of people right now,” she said.
“I’ve learned how to take initiative, what I want and how I want to portray myself on that stage.”
Being mentored by Rita Ora has allowed Xanthe to build her confidence with each performance.
“Rita just put so much faith in me and I’m so thankful to have her as my mentor,” she said.
“She’s taught me how to really hone my gift and had so much belief in me from the very beginning.”
The semi-finalist encouraged more people to get out of their comfort zones.
“The worst thing that happens is you get a no, and then you just keep trying,” Xanthe said.
“It’s all in the mentality … get yourself out there, don’t be afraid and have confidence in yourself that you are good enough.
“I always say to myself, there’s only one Xanthe, so it’s important to remember that your talents are specifically unique to you.”
Xanthe said she was glad she took the leap to apply for The Voice.
“I’m so thankful that I’m in touch with all of the contestants, we’re like a huge family and it’s so nice to be part of an experience where you can not only meet great people, but people that also share the same gift as you.”