Dear Beyoncé: Why underwear is not stagewear
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For a very long time I’ve been wondering what happened to costumes. When did it become acceptable—and passable—to just wear a bra and a pair of knickers on stage? It’s not the lack of modesty that bothers me (I did grow up on Madonna, after all), but rather the lack of effort. When I watch a music video or go to see a show, I expect grand, elaborate costumes. The more clothes the better, basically. Bras and knickers are boring. They might be great for straight men, but how many straight men do you really expect at your concert if you’re Britney, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, or indeed Madonna?
Imagine if you went to a Justin Bieber show and he was running around in his boxers. Would be slightly weird, no? I can’t quite recall when this trend for wearing underwear as stagewear started, but I guess it boils down to Madonna and Cher. While Cher has always kept a certain balance between nudity and glittery mummification, it seems that as Madonna’s grown older, she’s been bearing more and more flesh on each tour. What a shame for an entertainer, who gave us amazing clothes-heavy live performances such as the 18th Century version of "Vogue", or the 19th Century version of "Justify My Love". I was particularly appalled by those big knickers she wore on her last tour.
Britney Spears has every reason to wear head-to-toe costumes. And no, I’m not referring to her body—I’ve been to two of her shows and she always looks tiny in real life—but rather her costume history. This is the woman who gave us the "Oops I Did It Again" catsuit, and numerous one-pieces after that. Why are you suddenly settling for a rhinestone bra, Miss Spears? Gaga of course entered the entertainment scene after everyone had already started this unfortunate trend, but I will say this: in the Telephone video for instance, was I the only one who thought the dull lingerie set for the prison dance routine was a total anti-climax? After that Castelbajac prison suit, I had expected at least a little skirt.
But Beyoncé, I mainly take issue with you. You just released a video in which you’re basically just standing straight and singing, whilst wearing a lingerie set (see below). That, Honey B, is just lazy. For whatever reason, people worship you. At least have the courtesy to give them more than they could see in a tacky Victoria’s Secret shows. No, it truly doesn’t get bigger than Janet Jackson. Here is a woman with no reason to cover up—I promise you, her body is BANGING in real life—and yet she chooses to. One, because she has amazing costumes. And two, because no one needs to see your private parts while you’re singing a song about saving the world. Next generation, take note. (And you too, Madonna.)
Beyoncé - 'Best Thing I Never Had'
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