Kelly Clarkson's Break From The Voice Explained

The 20th season of NBC's The Voice is in full swing and the all-star coaches are one step closer to discovering America's next singing sensation. However, during the Battle Rounds episode on Monday, March 29, viewers were quick to notice that Kelly Clarkson was missing from the panel and replaced by a stand-in (per TV Insider). So what was the reason for the American Idol winner's absence from the show? 

In a clip posted on the singer's Instagram page on Monday, March 22, Kelly teased that her Voice seat would be temporarily filled by a mystery guest coach. "Hmmm... I wonder who's sitting in my chair.. any guesses??," Clarkson wrote in an accompanying caption. 

As Good Housekeeping reports, it was eventually revealed during the Battle Rounds episode that country music star Kelsea Ballerini would be sitting in for Kelly, who was forced to miss a few episodes as she wasn't feeling well. Speaking in the opening minutes of the show, The Voice host Carson Daily explained, "Unfortunately, our own Kelly Clarkson was not feeling well this week." He continued, "Kelly is staying at home but she's watching the battles remotely, and we were very lucky enough to get her good friend and our good friend, [Kelsea Ballerini]."

Kelly approved her of her Voice replacemet

Speaking on Instagram, Ballerini thanked temporary co-stars Nick Jonas, Blake Shelton, and John Legend for making her feel like part of the Voice family. "When @kellyclarkson calls and asks you to keep her seat warm, you put all those years of being her super fan to work." She continued, "I'm forever #teamkelly...see y'all at the battle rounds!"

Elsewhere, Clarkson also took to social media to address her absence from the show, offering her gratitude to Kelsea in the process. "Thank you so much @KelseaBallerini for sitting in for me while I was feeling under the weather!" Kelly wrote on Instagram, adding, "I know my team is in great hands with you!! Y'all aren't going to want to miss this!!"

As for next season, fans can look forward to a major shake-up of the Voice coaching panel, because pop sensation Ariana Grande has been confirmed to be joining the NBC hit. Per Digital Spy, Grande will join the forthcoming season 21 as the official replacement of Nick Jonas. Commenting on her new TV gig, the Grammy Award-winner said she is "beyond thrilled" to be apart of the reality-competition show. 

"I'm so honoured and excited to join The Voice family! I have been a huge fan of the show for such a long time," Grande said in a statement. "I can't wait to go head-to-head with the incredible coaches, get to know these new artists and help to take their craft to the next level."