After 16 seasons, Levine announced his departure from the singing competition series Friday. However, the Maroon 5 frontman’s lengthy goodbye announcement comes roughly two weeks after the NBC Upfronts showcase, when it seemed he was all set to appear. So what happened?
Levine reportedly wasn’t happy with all the rule changes The Voice was undergoing.
Due to a rule change after season 15, each coach didn’t automatically go to the Live Playoffs with the same number of team members, and by the time the semifinals rolled around Levine had zero singers left under his direction. His frustration bubbled over during the taping of these semifinals. Sources told Page Six that Levine was “very difficult” during the taping and offered no feedback to the other judges’ team members.
Levine’s discontentment with the show was allegedly further displayed at the NBC Upfronts presentation, where he sang at what a source described as an “emotionless” performance alongside his fellow judges Blake Shelton, Kelly Clarkson, and John Legend. His performance allegedly ruffled feathers with the co-chairman of NBC Entertainment, Paul Telegdy, according to an unnamed source who spoke to Page Six. Refinery29 has reached out to reps for both Levine and NBC.
So for now it seems Levine was ready to move on.
“Thank you NBC for signing me up. I am truly honored to have been a part of something I’ll always cherish for the rest of my life,” Levine wrote on Instagram. “Thank you to every single coach I ever sat in those chairs with. That is shared experience that is singularly ours. We have that for life.”
Levine’s fellow coaches took to social media to share farewell wishes to the singer. Clarkson praised Levine, saying that “to start an amazing show from the ground up is a big deal,” while Legend simply tweeted, “we’ll miss you brother.”