Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Ukraine's Got Talent. Yes It Does

I'm not a fan of talent shows: X Factor, Britain's Got Talent, Popstars... anything like that. Mostly, because it's very rarely that the audience is presented with anyone with much discernible talent. Sure, for the most part they can sing - but in a conveyor belt kind of way. The winner of one show is often a carbon copy of a previous winner, or of the current flavour of the month, riding high in the charts.

If they were actually dedicated to uncovering unique talents, unreplicated and unlikely to be, then it may be more interesting. I might actually watch from time to time. This clip baffles me. I can't decide where I stand on it - whether this girl should be catapulted into superstardom, given space at the Tate, or plonked down at Trafalgar Square in a sandbox to earn a crust. But she's definitely unique.

Kseniya Simonova is a sand animator from the Ukraine. She only started doing her thing properly after her business collapsed in the financial crisis of 2008. Last year, she won the final of Ukraine's Got Talent after spending 8 minutes creating a series of sand drawings depicting the life in the USSR during the Great Patriotic War against Hitler's Third Reich in WWII. The video below is breathtaking.

Not only is the girl scarily gifted, but she attempts to do something absolutely unheard of on the British equivalents. She invokes a sense of history, courts areas of controversy and races from cultural and historical touchstone to touchstone, bringing members of the audience to tears.

How can anyone still be content with being subjected to Jedward or one of Simon Cowell's latest protegees after watching the clip below? And to think, we got Rolf Harris...