Nick Leshi

Nick Leshi
Bronx, New York, United States of America
December 13
Writer, actor, media professional, fan of entertainment, pop culture, and speculative fiction. Contact for more info.


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APRIL 17, 2012 10:29PM

Eyes Wide Open?

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They say that the eyes are the windows to the soul, but sometimes some singers seem to forget that. Gotye appeared on Saturday Night Live this past weekend, and even though it was an otherwise good performance, even though I really enjoy his songs, I was disappointed that he kept his eyes closed during most of his singing. It was ironic that one of his songs was "Eyes Wide Open."

Maybe the Belgian-Australian songwriter/performer was nervous.  He's an international star, but is finally starting to make a splash in the U.S. thanks to his hit song "Somebody That I Used to Know," and this appearance on SNL will surely boost his visibility.  When he was interacting with his fellow singer Kimbra, he seemed at his best and most approachable, and he was fine in the skit with Andy Samberg and Taran Killam.  During the quiet bars of his tunes, however, he closed his eyes, a habit that he shares with many other singers, but it makes it no less frustrating to watch.

Viewers want to connect with performers they see on stage. When singers have their eyes shut, it's a barrier for the audience. It's fine to occasionally fall into the moment, but doing it for a prolonged time seems self-indulgent.  Hopefully, Gotye will be a little more confident in future live productions and open up a bit more. 

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Singing with eyes closed has been a pet peeve of mine for as long as I can remember.

"Intake breathing into the mike" is even worse.

I do not understand why so many contestants on talent shows do both. Seems coaches would warn against those things as "item #1."