The contestants of “The Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart” traveled to their final destination during Monday night’s finale. Chris Watson and Bri Strauss, Trevor Holmes and Jamie Gabrielle, and Matt Ranaudo and Rudi arrived in Nashville ahead of their last performances.
Each couple was given their weekly musical assignment before they began rehearsals and their last dates. While most immediately began to practice, Matt continued to express doubts about his relationship with Rudi.
After realizing they couldn’t catch up to the emotions of their fellow contestants, the two ultimately decided to end their relationship. “I will forever have such deep feelings for you,” he told her in a parting sentiment. “We will be so bonded from this whole thing for the rest of our lives.”
The remaining couples were offered their respective “Fantasy Suites.” While Jamie and Trevor elected to take advantage of the additional time together, Chris and Bri chose to forgo their shared room.
“What’s gotten in the way of any relationship I’ve really had … has really just been accelerating too fast on the physical front, and not being solid on an emotional front,” Chris said.
While declining a Fantasy Suite is a Bachelor rarity, both Chris and Bri were content with their decision. “We’re at such a good place, I don’t want anything to compromise it,” she said.
However, their stability didn’t carry over to rehearsal the next day, as their musical director critiqued their performance for “not feeling together.”
“I keep thinking about last night,” Bri said. “Any form of intimacy does bond two people and bring them closer. Maybe we’re a little off today because of that.”
The closing concert was performed in front of a panel of judges that included performers Taye Diggs, Jewel and Rita Wilson, as well as Bachelor nation couple Kaitlyn Bristowe and Jason Tartick.
Jamie and Trevor opened the show, and their renditions of “Unchained Melody” and “Speechless” were embraced by the judges. But while they were enthusiastic about their “adorable” relationship, they also thought they leaned on each other too much, and couldn’t find their independence.
The second act featured Chris and Bri’s performances. The judges praised both their chemistry and their technical abilities.
“I’d pay money to see you guys,” Diggs said.
The judges had the ultimate decision-making power. After deliberation, Chris Harrison hosted a rose ceremony in front of the audience, where he announced Chris and Bri as the first winners of the series. The two won a chance to write, record and tour their music together.
In addition to being the first winners of the series, Chris and Bri are also one of the only interracial couples of any “Bachelor” series.
During the credits, viewers were given a recent glimpse into the couple’s recording life, as they prepare to release their debut album. Their song featured the lyrics: “Scared to death that you might be it / The love is real, that the shoe might fit / You might just be my everything and beyond / And beyond / Space and time and the afterlife / Will I have your kids? / Will you be my wife? / You might just be my everything and beyond.”