Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Jewish Star Videos and more

Video: performers

Interviews with judges and contestants

So... A Jewish Star is over and a day later we know who won - Piamenta Jr - with a very energetic performance. Did he deserve it? Looking at all the performances, this was the only listenable piece. The rest was subpar, very very weak and mostly off tuned.

What is clear is that well produced auditions masked the real voices of the auditioners. They are all at best average voices, and that's already a compliment. Next time the auditions should be voice only. Let's be real.

In a more positive note, this edition showed that anyone, ANYONE, could have been standing there. Yes, you also. Maybe that will encourage more people to submit videos.

The lack of interactiveness hurt this a lot, since only the people who attended te show were actually part of it. The unfortunate souls who couldn't make it had no connection to it until today. Didn't anybody think of making a live feed over the web?

In any case, shkoiach to Piamenta Jr who did feel confortable in stage much like Binyamin Moshe last year. We already have a pattern of Israelis doing well in the contest and that's no surpirse - Israeli Jewish Music is far more interesting the mainstream today. Israeli seem to have more chutzpa to do their thing without being afraid of standing out. That's great for music.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Finalists are here - A Jewish Star

A Jewish Star Season Two - Finalists from COLlive.com on Vimeo.

Well, many surprises made into the next stage and many very talented contestants were left behind, but it is what it is.

The more edgy contestants are Weinstein and Menkes, but it's interesting to note that neither of the two have special voices - their strength is in their original compositions. And that's ok.

Now I can't understand how Hillel Braun and Piamenta made it through. It will probably remain as the mystery of this century.

In any case, A. Fried was as always on the ball and consistent, albeit less aggressive than last year; Peillin does have value as a judge as he knows what to look for in a performer. However Eli G was surprisingly popcorn-ish, very superficial and way too afraid to say anything undiplomatic. Is he the Paula Abdul of this show? He has the experience and pedigree to be there but I really hope he steps up his game in the live show.

All in all, this show is very lukewarm and I hereby call again for a different formula for next year. Let the judges choose and then the public. The current formula forced the judges against the wall, as they have no say in who will be the top 10 and they could only bend their head's down and agree.

The judges should be more in the spotlight! The video above was OK but far from being a immersive entertainment section. If done it correctly, this show has the potential to be a blockbuster.