July 13, 2024

Ashley Ryan, country artist, auditions for popular NBC competition

Finding the confidence to follow dreams can be a daunting experience. However, when a passion clicks, there is no reason not to pursue it.

Ashley Ryan, freshman exercise science major, found her  passion within singing.

Ryan did not start her journey as a singer-songwriter until the age of 16, but it began with the love of writing at 12 years old.

“I used to write poetry, which turned into novel writing and then became song writing,” Ryan said. “I started singing because of my passion for songwriting, and once I started singing, it just clicked.”

Coming from a family of singers, Ryan gets her confidence from her mother and grandmother but also looks toward other artists for additional inspiration.

“I would watch Carrie Underwood and other artists perform on stage and I felt like I belonged on stage,” Ryan said.

Once Ryan found her passion, she traveled to Las Vegas to follow her dreams. After driving three hours, Ryan found herself in line with thousands of other aspiring musicians to have their chance at “The Voice.”

“I was waiting for five hours and finally got called in,” Ryan said. “We were broken into groups of 10, (and) each of us got called up in a little room with one judge and we sang a verse and a chorus … I was the only one in the group that made it through.”

Though Ryan did not advance to the following round, she acknowledges how far she came and continues to aspire to achieve her dreams.

“I did find out that there were 10,000 people that auditioned that day, and only 90 people made it through, so I was proud of that,” Ryan said. “I am trying out again this year.”

With this year’s auditions on the horizon, Ryan continues in her preparation and already knows Blake Shelton is her preferred coach if she makes it on the show.

“Team Blake all the way. I’m a country singer and I love him,” Ryan said.

Season 12 of “The Voice” premieres Feb. 27 on NBC. Although Ryan will not be featured during this season, hopes are high that future seasons will feature the aspiring country singer and help her childhood dreams come true.

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