Posts Tagged ‘entertainment


Perform Yourself! Background Dancers Suck.


Have I mentioned how background dancers annoy me? I’m quite sure this isn’t the first time I’ve felt the need to spout off about them. Cool as they may try to be, pretty as some may be, what sense do they make? And, when did this become a contageous problem? What ever happened to performers having to stop their show to get extra people off the stage?

If someone I genuinely like to hear sing has background dancers, I am inclined to turn away. I just can’t stand them nor can I understand the point of them.

If I want to watch people dance, I’ll go to a ballroom or buy a ticket to some bigger production with sole focus on dancing to music.

If someone giving a speech had a bunch of people shaking their butts next to the podium, would that make you like the orator more? Would you even hear most of what he or she says? And, what would the dancers be “saying” to enhance the speech?

I can just see a priest giving his Sunday sermon with a “choir” of dancers moving around him. I am so sure people coming to pray and hear “the good word” would appreciate that performance. I am also sure more people would be talking about the dancers than the sermon itself…which is so wrong.

I am not a fan of rap. And, if a rapper–who tries to recite a novel in a matter of minutes–has background dancers, I am not going to grasp an ounce of the “gold” they are supposedly spewing. And, I am certainly not going to buy their albums…because no magic is going to reproduce the dancing balloon butts that stole my focus…unless we’re talking about holograms. But, then, am I buying a hologram projection of pop-o-matic butt action or music I care to hear in the background of my life?

A half-dozen or more Magic-Mike-and-Ike extras are not an improvement to anyone’s performance…with the small exception of being a sports star with his or her own entourage of cheerleaders. And, even that would be distracting.

In fact, if you are dictionary-challenged, the definition of “distraction” includes a stage and a performer outnumbered by people doing something other than what the performer is doing.

[It’s like playing a video game with cheerleaders or spectators choosing to walk in front of the TV screen. How am I supposed to see what I am doing? How am I supposed to concentrate while you think you are boosting my morale? I don’t even like people talking while I am focusing on a video game; it’s very distracting. And, I only get more stressed out and upset when I lose while distracted versus losing from my own lack of skill. I cannot talk and play. So, don’t talk while I am playing…unless we’re both playing and it’s a silly game meant to be fun.

I really miss the old Atari days of two people sitting to play a simple game for points. The games never demanded more than maybe ten minutes apiece, even if you played more than a dozen games and burned through a few hours. No codes or other devices were required. And, the games were nowhere near as violent as too many modern street-crime and warfront simulators are. The concern for warping minds was nothing compared to what it is now. But, I am drifting off the subject.]

**If background dancers need to share the stage, how about having them introduce an act or follow a performance like an intermission? That would actually enhance a performer’s appeal. Make the background a foreground or aftershock to keep the good vibes going. Don’t overlap talents…if that can even be called a talent.**

Back in the day of the sequin-gloved superstar known as Michael Jackson, before things got really sad and weird with him, turning that high-voiced little black boy into a pale, disfigured scapegoat, if he had other dancers with him on stage, they moved like a unit. Or, it was more like a musical with various people doing different things on one stage. But, I cannot recall ever feeling as distracted and annoyed as I am now. I remember watching Lionel Ritchie videos, with so many colorful people moving around him, and not feeling nearly as bothered as I am, today.

[However, I was never a fan of collaborations like Run DMC and Aerosmith. It was fun for lip-synching at talent shows. But, I did not enjoy listening to that noise as much as I favored Billy Joel or Huey Lewis and the News.]

There is just something different about this modern plague of background dancers that makes me want to scream.

If you’re the main attraction on a stage, own it. Don’t share it (unless it’s a duet/group performance). And, let the “sideshow” lead the parade or cover your exit.


I Just Can’t Get “Stupid”

Watching people do foolish things in the same movie I’ve seen almost a half-dozen times now, I am struck with a notion about my own life and the world around me. I think of countless lives going through the same paces: lame conversations, political and religious squabbles, lousy excuses for entertaining oneself with what’s considered popular or current entertainment, pathetic pick-up lines, drunken mishaps, online dating, blind dates, arranged dates, hours upon hours of casual sex, friends with benefits, one night stands, more lame conversations injected with comparisons of body parts and intimate activities taken way too leisurely (instead of seriously), drug use and abuse, dares and contests demanding impressive results, mistaken tattoos and painful piercings, bad relationships ended in all sorts of unpleasant ways, divorce, abortion, multiple marriages, single parenthood, forsaking one’s religion/faith from any number of the previous weighing too heavily on the conscience and essentially declaring oneself a lazy “spiritual” person or atheist, alimony, child support, “pre-nups”, “post-nups”, jobs that don’t pay emotionally and financially, unpredictable insurance and retirement plans, etc. etc.

All of the above are things “most” people do as part of “the norm”. Not one of them can I commit so casually without a heap of discomfort amassing in my gut. And, upon once more realizing this boundary that separates me from “most” people, I am–yet again–discouraged from “entering the game”.

If someone explained the rules of chess to you, and you decided they were too complicated; how would you feel if everyone you saw around you was suddenly playing that very game? Imagine being the only deaf or blind person in your city, state or country, not knowing how to convey the full nature of your life experience to another living soul without fear of misunderstanding, isolation/segregation or something far worse.

How many cases in history were resolved horribly or violently/lethally from misunderstanding? Do I really want to be one of those cases simply because I don’t “go with the flow”? Can you begin to–if not already–understand how difficult it can be to wake up every day with little to no interest in doing any of those things previously listed while the rest of the world around me expects me to do just that if I want to “belong”?

I imagine myself driving a stick-shift car and not being able to downshift to that lower gear everyone else on the road around me uses to “get by”. I see them all pass me by either hastily or leisurely. And, there I sit in the middle of traffic, being honked at and unable to get my vehicle moving. I am a heartbeat away from a horrible accident. And, it has me on edge to the Nth degree. If I lose another minute, I could be dead. I need to get myself in gear and merge with traffic. Wait. I just need another–

I’m more content being of service to people as I find them and utilizing my creativity to its fullest. But, presently, that’s not filling in all the necessary boxes of a “normal” life. It’s not “financially sound” or “relationship savvy”. And, that worries me.

If you see someone stuck on the side of the road with his “blinkers” on, it’s probably me, not going anywhere. I just can’t get “stupid”.


[Disclaimer:  I use the word “stupid” as a substitute for mistaken and/or erroneous.  No one wants to be called stupid.  But, we all should know when we’ve made a mistake. And, I am a stubborn perfectionist.]