Published on April 27th, 2009 | by thevyne3
What Susan Boyle Can Teach Us About Beauty
Some of you may have heard by now of Susan Boyle, the Scottish woman who performed on the British version of American Idol. Performance seems like a weak word to describe what Ms. Boyle did- in the Black community, we might say that Susan Boyle sang on that show, bringing the audience to their feet just a few lines into her song, and utterly wowing Simon Cowell. But what really stood out about Ms. Boyle is that she is not a conventionally attractive woman – she’s not slim, or young, or stylish, or even particularly graceful in the way that some heavy-set women can be. When she marched across the stage to begin her song, it was apparent from the audience’s and judges’ expressions that that their expectations for Susan Boyle’s performance are very low. But Susan’s singing isn’t just good, it’s fantastically good- and she leaves no doubt that her ability is on par with any other top singer. What really strikes me about this situation, however, is why we should all be so surprised about Ms. Boyle’s talent. Should someone have to look a certain way or have a certain stature to be an amazing singer? Have we gotten so used to the packaged, stylized, and constructed vocalists of our time that we have forgotten that talent and image are not interdependent? It shouldn’t be surprising that Susan Boyle has a remarkable gift; it’s remarkable that we somehow expected her voice to match her image, restricted by our own lack of imagination. So, in considering Susan Boyle, I found the true gift of her performance to not only be hearing her incredible voice, but also the reminder to not let others or even ourselves limit us to the small confines of outward beauty.
Photo courtesy of mirror.co.uk