What was supposed to be a “full length” debut viewing of the video for Beyoncé’s new single, “Run the World (Girls),” on “American Idol” ended up being cut a little short to go to commercial break. I was not disappointed.
The beloved Beyoncé produced her signature moves and shakes, but the video left me flat and half-baked. What kept my attention more than the lack of lyrics and all of the simulated skirmishes and goings-on with her and her dance crew were her stilettoless feet. Rather than her typical stilts, she wore what appeared to be sensible shoes for dancing in the desert in most scenes. Of course, she had to have a scene or two in which her elegant, hair-in-a-bun self came forth.
Although much of the music industry has left the days of meaningful, potent lyrics, I am hopeful that Beyoncé hasn’t abandoned them in exchange for a few lazy lines, a heavy rhythmic beat and shimmying. I need for her to go deeper and take me back to the songs that made her famous. Most fans latch on to whatever she produces, but I am unlatched to this one for some reason, but to each his (or her) own.
The pleasant surprises tonight were a show-opening video chronicling Beyoncé’s childhood and career and her personally meeting, coaching and mentoring the final three contestants through their preparations for the first of three performances each. Simply dressed in a khaki, sleeveless, one-piece shorts outfit and black platform stilettos, she greeted each wide-eyed contestant with a warm kiss and hug. Her comments were well-planned, sincere, personal and very insightful.
Beyoncé admitted to Georgia contestant, Lauren Alaina, that she has to talk her confidence up before every performance. Confidence is a theme that has come up repeatedly for the teenage singer this season.
“I know I have created a character for myself when I perform,” Bey explained. “But I’m really…. [her words trail off and she shrinks her body and shakes it like a frightened, shy child].” She shared the affirmations she repeats to herself to regain her poise and power, which includes “I deserve this.”
Individuals who are serious about careers in the performance arts would do well to tune in to shows such as “American Idol.” Each season is packed with helpful tips and lessons from industry heavyweights who know the inside secrets to being successful in the entertainment industry. –arnell pharr
Season 11 auditions begin in St. Louis on June 28, 2011. Check the American Idol website for more information.