As probably many of You, I am a great fan of the BBC ONE show "The Voice UK"! What happened few days ago, while I was watching the first live session, is that suddenly a question jumped into my mind : "can fashion styling affect singers performances?"
As image consultant I always try to notice how people dress and above all how they behave in certain clothes and outfits. Well, watching the show I had the impression that some singers performed worse than usual, not only for emotional reasons, but even for a certain discomfort wearing their clothes (at least in my opinion) as well as I found some outfits quite distracting, that made me focus on different subjects rather than the performance itself.
Let's start with Cody Frost, the 17 year old artist from team Boy George! http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/profiles/5kK8pqLcM0lm1FfV0KN7SG5/cody-frost
She has a very punk soul (and not only the soul!) and she's very charismatic, aggressive and tender at the same time, and apart from that I really think she has a beautiful voice and a unique way to sing! In terms of personal look most of the people may not feel represented by her and may find it quite strong, but I think she has a great and powerful presence on the stage! So, what happened during the show? Even her coach defined her exhibition a bit "messy"! Well, the first thing I thought, even before she started to sing, was "What happened to her?"..the way she moved, they way she sung, her expression, her unusual insecurity and rigidity made me think that she was feeling really uncomfortable in those clothes and shoes.
Here below some shots of her during her performance at the live show, aired on March the 26th
Didn't you have the same impression? I think she really feels more at ease in her large trousers, bomber and sneakers!
The second artist I'd like to talk about is Lauren Lapsley-Browne , the 18 years old girl from team Will.i.am http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/profiles/5vwtYNzbchJwL1ltS03q2Vq/lauren-lapsley-browne She is very nice, isn't she? I mean, not only as singer but even as beauty. It shouldn't be difficult to find the right outfit for her, nevertheless... look at these 2 pictures :
The one on the left is a shot from her live performance, aired on March the 26th, the one on the right is instead a shot of her Blind Audition. Can you see how different she seems to be in these two pictures? She has a quite rounded face shape and gathering all her hair back doesn't seem to enhance her at all. There's no need to explain more, I think the thing is quite evident.
Sadly her hairstyle is not the only thing that I have to criticize about her total look on the live show. During her performance, actually, I found difficult (and my husband as well) to focus my attention on her voice and her performance because our eyes were constantly caught by her legs! Yes...her legs! She has beautiful legs, indeed, but she is a singer not a top model and she could have shown them in a more balanced outfit, cause the one she was wearing was really drawing the attention on her bottom, distracting from the rest of her (despite the sparkling and fringed shawl she was wearing on top).
I am quite sure that the bias cut of the skirt is the main reason of it. Anyway, the song ended and I realized I didn't really listen to her and I couldn't therefore be impressed by her exhibition. Maybe, and I say maybe, I wasn't the only one who had these "defiance" seeing what happened later.
Let's talk about the sweet and smart Heather Cameron-Hayes of Team Paloma now, the youngest singer of the contest I suppose.
I think she has great talent, a powerful but sweet voice, emotional and energetic at the same time; Just.. personally, I'd never had made her wear bold floral printed dresses like the one she was wearing and, above all, I felt sorry for her when I saw her dress matching the cover of the piano she was playing and all the panels around her during the live performance! I didn't find it romantic or in line with the song she was singing.
I would really like to ask her how she was feeling and if she agreed with such a "bold" choice. Nevertheless she sung wonderfully! I think that she's strong and that singing is for her an important way to communicate; I believe that she could go beyond any possible embarrassment and this is what will make the audience love her.
But I don't want to be only critical! In this contest for example I reckon perfect styling choices for the artists Lydia Lucy, Jordan Gray and Lyrickal (you can see them in the pictures below). Their performances were great as well as their total look! I think they were feeling represented by their fashion styling during the live show and this might have helped them in having such great and flawless performances, apart for what the coaches decided.
So, after all this considerations, my answer to the question "can fashion styling affect singers performances?" it is ..YES, absolutely!