Effi Summers - Music Industry Blogger
Creative Blog- Creative Direction, Branding and Design Projects
It's FINAL time, whoop! I think this was one of the strongest finals there has been and for the Champions, I suppose that's what you'd expect. Well let's delve right in then, shall we?
Bars & Melody provided a spectacular opener; they brought energy, glowsticks and professionalism. I feel that this production was more 'them' than the previous stage but I wasn't a fan of the little stairs in front of the judges; it looked a bit awks and weird. Other than that I enjoyed the use of staging and they seemed super duper comfortable, like it was their gig. They felt very at ease, which is fun to see. Their outfits seemed authentic to them and fitted with their overall brand so all good in the hood. I hope the show gives them the boost in promo that they need.
Preacher Lawson was up next and I do think he did better than the previous round. The opening was questionable on paper but his character pulled it off and it did wonders for warming up the audience. This is the kinda backdrop I'm talking abouttt! Much better than last time; it was glitzy but didn't distract from his performance. I think he seemed more settled and the jokes were better too (imo of course).
Next up is Kseniya Simonova and her sand art. The lighting complimented this beautifully; it was so emotional and wholesome. This act needs the most subtle of production; all the focus needs to be on the her and the sand. Again, I would have removed the glittery, slightly animated background and left it stark, with some subtle lighting. However, this did seem less overpowering than it was before.
I thought the boxes (workstations? No idea what you'd call these things), should have been transparent. The black was very solid and brash for such a delicate performance and it would have been nice to see more of her movements. It looked a bit like she was behind some kind of corporate desk.
Darcy Oake scores 10/10 in my book for storytelling and evoking emotion. Wow.
Although, I would have made the overall production design completely different and kept it loyal to his industrial, edgy brand image. The gold and red looked traditional and luxury and they are not words I associate with Darcy; it was a bit too 'theatre'. I thinkkkk the visual was trying to add warmth to support the storytelling but I just don't think it worked here. He stands out for making magic cool and being totally relevant and that's why it's important to keep a strong aesthetic. I also think the background music was way too cheesy.
I feel like this could have kept the raw emotion while keeping the industrial aesthetic consistent, supported by some dark, sad classical music. This would have made the whole performance more dramatic and true to brand, imo.
For the MerseyGirls I felt the staging was used really well, with an excellent use of props, costume and lighting. I don't think the choreography or overall performance really stepped it up from the previous round though. Their story is incredibly inspiring but the act lacks originality and 'oomph' for me.
Ahh Bello and Annalise Nock, I friggen love em. A flawless choice of outfits and the sway poles were amazing, together with the use of music and comic timing. I think it's harder to get a really entertaining performance from these than the wheel death but they smashed it.
On to the wheel of death part... oh my god. So as far as I can tell, Annaliese didn't quite have enough time to get her foot on the handles and they had to try it 3 times, but jesus I am always so impressed by Bello's commands - he knows instantly what to do and how to fix it and instructs the others. It's like the wheel of death is an extra body part or something.
As much I think I preferred the audition performance partly because of the use of music, they did step it up with the danger this time and I think that's necessary for the finals. I like to see the performances get bigger and better as the rounds progress.
Arghh the skipping brought so many emotions. I feel like Bello wasn't meant to falter but it may have been exceedingly good acting. Annaliese knocked it out the park, she did it so confidently and I felt super safe watching it, even after her rocky start.
Now, I'm not 100% sure what was meant to happen and what wasn't. I THINK Bello grabbed hold of the wheel too early which meant the whole thing speeded up, meaning Annaliese had to move much quicker whilst balancing on top of it (argh). Once she'd 'alighted', it sped up even more due to the momentum and so Bello continued without any weight on the other side which brought much anxiety hahaaaa but he corrected it all, despite looking a tad worried and they ended super professionally. At the end of the day the performance scared the beejesus out of everyone, which was the point. Bravooo!
Onwards and go forth to Twist and Pulse! This was better than the previous round I reckon, they kept some of their classic movements but had loads of new bits too. Their brand image is so stronggg! I feel like it would have been more fun to watch on TV than in the arena, just because of the detail but obviously the audience friggen loved it.
The decision to keep the staging simple was correct; the music, movement and background animation were all very quick and detailed with some very fast changes so adding anything else would have made the performance messy and overwhelming. It was all very funny and profesh; they're totally ready to have their own show of some kind. Done wellllll.
Aww Alexa Lauenburger! She steps it up each time, I don't know how she manages it, especially at such a young age. I love the themes and the doggo routines always change; she always pulls a new trick out the bag. The outfit was possibly a little too fussy but the background and music choice were great.
I think this was really worthy of the top 3. It possibly is one of those performances that convey better on TV than in the arena. It would have been interesting to know what the public would have voted. She's fab though, I'm sure she'll go on to amazing things!
Ahh I still don't 100% get Stavros Flatley. I mean, it was very entertaining and everyone seemed to be enjoying it; I just feel like it's not that meaty. They seem like awesome people though so I do want them to do well. I think getting the audience involved was a great way to improve on the last round's performance and the staging and production design was ideal for them, there's nothing I would have changed about that.
I did NOT expect Paddy and Nicko to close the show! But that song choice was absolutely perfect, for them and for the final performance. This was the best they've done so far imo, it seemed a lot more confident. The production and outfits will always stay true to traditional salsa dance for them so I think this was well done and very glitzy! A massive improvement on the last round in regards to the act and the production.
I enjoyed this so much more than their other performances; a great finisher!
So the top 3 were:
Winner: Twist and Pulse
Second: Stavros Flatley
Third: Kseniya Simonova
Based solely on the performances from this night, I think the top acts were Twist & Pulse, Kseniya Simonova, Alexa Lauenburger and Bello & Annaliese Nock.
Based solely on my opinion of who's the best overall, considering all performances, brand identity and future career potential, I would go for Darcy Oake, Bello & Annaliese Nock and Twist & Pulse.
Well there you have it, my thoughts and musings on the show and the creative ✌🏼
#bgt #creativedirection #creativedirector #productiondesign #staging #realitytv #entertainment #musicindustry
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