Thursday, October 17, 2013

Keep Your Clothes On, Girls, Says Welsh Recording Star Charlotte Church

Charlotte Church
Another veteran musical performer has weighed in with advice in the wake of singer Miley Cyrus's recent sexually explicit live and video performances.  Charlotte Church, invited to give the annual John Peel Lecture October 14 to broadcasting executives at Britain's annual radio festival, made some of the same points as Sinead O'Connor in cautioning young female performers about crossing over the line into performance pornography.

"The irony behind this is that the women generally filling these roles are very young, often previous child stars or Disney-tweens, who are simply interested in getting along in an industry glamorized to be the most desirable career for young women,” Church said in the lecture, as reported by The Telegraph. (No joke:  Miley Cyrus starred in the Disney Channel's "Hannah Montana";  another child star turned musical sexpot is Britney Spears, a veteran of Disney's "Mickey Mouse Club.")  "They are encouraged to present themselves as hyper-sexualized, unrealistic, cartoonish, as objects, reducing female sexuality to a prize you can win," Church said.  She endorses a system that would give age-appropriate ratings to music videos.

Church, 27, has described being whipsawed in her own career by differing visions of her sexuality as she went from a breakthrough classical vocalist at age 11 to an adult musical interpreter with crossover appeal. In an interview with the BBC, Church said that early in her career,  "There was a big clamour to cover my breasts as they wanted to keep me as young as possible. Then it became, "You should definitely get them out, they look great."

Church talks about this worsening issue for popular female musical performers, her own career, and women in music in this interview with the Women's Hour of the BBC, which happily includes many other women active in the music industry.

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