One thing I don’t get is performers who wear sunglasses when they perform outdoors. It blocks your connection to the audience. I don’t care if you have a sensitivity to light, it hurts your show. I get that standing in the sun is uncomfortable, but so is sweating in 107 degree heat.
At the ND State Fair, on the stage next to my stage is a music stage. Daniel Kosel is performing, and all week he’s been wearing sunglasses for his shows. I want to note that his show is a lot less of a show than the other acts I’ll be talking about later in this post.
Daniel is just a guy with a guitar, who stands there and sings. He sings slower songs and mostly older songs. His performance isn’t very dynamic, there’s nothing he does that makes you want to watch him, he’s more of an ambient act, than a mainstage act. While there’s nothing wrong with that, I also don’t think this is the venue for that. He’d be better in a smaller, indoor type venue.
Yesterday on the same stage they had the 188th Army Band of North Dakota. This is one of the Army/National Guard Band, and if you ever get the chance to see any of the army bands, do it! They performers are all super talented and very dynamic. They do upbeat music, and their show is super tight! Any performer can learn a lot about watching these band.
If you look at the pic of the 188th band above, you’ll notice the guy in the center is wearing sunglasses. While I’m not a fan, I also give him a pass, as he’s not the front person, it’s the lady to the left that’s the signer. The guy in the middle was doing a guitar solo when the pic was taken.
The final show of the day was Sting Rays Jukebox Rock. This show is a high energy show that’s full of production and is a lot of fun. Sting Ray plays oldies, but songs everyone knows. He’s got a great look and a tight show. He does a good job connecting with the audience. He’s very likeable onstage.
You’ll notice that no one in Sting Ray’s show is wearing sunglasses. I know this pic was taken after sun down, but at his earlier shows while the sun was up, everyone’s eyes were visible.
I’ve always told performers you can learn more about performing by watching other shows than you can by doing your show. You learn what you like or don’t like, and once you know what you don’t like, you can try to avoid those things in your show.