Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Unexpected Idol

Like many Americans, I watched with wonder, amazement, and heartfelt emotion as Susan Boyle took center stage and became the most unexpected idol in the history of the show. Her talent is surprising only in that it comes from such a humble and very real person. As I watched the clips of the audience when Susan took the stage I was disappointed in peoples reactions to her. Some wore expressions that said nothing less than "loser" when she introduced herself, others looked on indulgently as if they were giving a spoiled child the opportunity to be clever, and others choked back giggles or laughed audibly when she announced her age and singing aspirations.

Did people react this way because Susan Boyle is over age twenty, not built like a Barbie doll, or dressed like a pole dancer? I would like to think not, but when I look at many popular women singers, and there are exceptions, sex seems to be the selling point, not talent. I could only hope for the courage that it took for Susan Boyle to come on to that young, hip show in all of her middle-aged glory and sing like an angel. I can't help but think that the world would be a better place all around if less emphasis was put on looks and more emphasis put on what is inside a person. This is true especially for women. The audience said it all in this case, homely, middle-aged woman, what in the hell would she ever have to offer!

It will be interesting to see if there is any transformation of Susan Boyle to be had. In an interview she stated that she probably wouldn't be doing any of that hip wiggling again as she was too proper. I wonder if the audience would laugh at her like they did the first time she was on stage, or with her if she were to execute those moves again. Personally I would be satisfied if Susan Boyle stayed Susan Boyle, no hair dye, plastic surgery, or wardrobe enhancement required. She could record a few CD's and the world could focus on the beauty that is her voice.

1 comment:

Benjamin Ady said...

I agree with you! I think part of what has made Susan's performance so popular is the incredible transformation between the initial, ageist, nasty, smirky responses and the awe, and the clapping, and the wonder!

That was 'my song' when I was depressed on LOGOS II - the tigers... - and I know how hard it is to sing...which is funnily enough why I wasn't so surprised first time I saw her, because you'd only dare sing it in public if you could really sing!!!!!!!

love m