Idols SA has a problem and it's called Ofentse

Another week and Idols SA season 13 fan favorite [and clearly judges'] Ofentse blew a performance and judging by Randall's response, he may just make it to TOP 16. 

To prefix this commentary, let's just get the obvious out of the way. Ofentse is incredibly talented. With the right record label and management team he looks set to have a career after Idols. Hell, he may be the breakout star of this whole season. 

That said, does his talent alone warrants his continued save from the judges? I think not. Yes, Idols is a talent search show and the talent should be what is paramount but there is a lot more to the competition. 

From his initial audition when he wowed the fans and the judges, Ofentse is yet to live up to expectation set by that stellar audition. Theatre week during the group battle he messed up his lyrics and as Somizi put it; contributed nothing to his group's win. He was saved. 

This week once again he failed to deliver a clean performance because he ... you guessed it ... forgot his lyrics. 

Whether Ofentse has a problem with singing in English is something worth looking into and perhaps this is an indication of a flaw in an African competition that expects Africans to sing American songs to highlight their skills. 

Maybe he does have a problem with English, but since we have yet to see him get an African song to perform and juxtapose the performances we can not judge that definitively. 

My gripe with the Ofentse situation is fairness or the lack there of. A lot of people walk through the Idols SA doors. Many have obvious talent but are often eliminated because they either had a bad day or chose the wrong song to showcase their vocal abilities. 

This is not just an assumption; if you watch the show you must have seen judges make the exact comments to some people they eliminate. 

Furthermore, the show is about building artists and there is an element of discipline that comes with that. Not knowing your lyrics is akin to an actor not knowing his lines — that's a big NO NO in this industry. It shows a lack of professionalism that is never tolerated to this extent. 

What does it say to all the other contestants who struggle with the lyrics but learn them any way and still have to keep their vocal performance in check. With this pass after pass on lyrics, it gives the impression that Ofentse does not have to do all the work, he just have to worry about his voice ... and that is not fair. 

Should Ofentse make it to the Top 16, he definitely has a big burden to carry — the burden of not f'ing up AGAIN. 

Regardless of his talent, unless Idols SA can show that he actually puts in the work beyond the call of duty to learn his lyrics but is struggling because of some impediment, then he must go if he messes up. Otherwise this whole thing becomes a sham. 

The appearance or even just the perception of preferential treatment risks jeopardizing the show's credibility even if the show has good reason to keep Ofentse for ratings. It is a tv show afer-all! 

Watch Ofentse's performance on this past Sunday's episode; 

Catch Idols SA, Sunday at 17h30 on Mzansi Magic (Dstv channel 161). 

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.