Profile Artist: Beyoncé Track: Listen Length: 3minutes, 40seconds Released: January 19th, 2007 Labels: Music World, Columbia Producers': The Underdogs - Matt Sullivan, Randy Spendlove Writers: Beyoncé Knowles, Henry Kriegerm, Scott Cutler, Anne Preven Genre: Soul, R&B Type: Performance/Narrative
Film codes and conventions:The stage is a typical convention of a drama/musical. The clips of performance from the film showed during the song reinforce this. Beyoncé didn’t just perform the song Listen, she was also part of the film as a back-up singer (actress) known as Deena Jones.
Music video conventions:- Lip syncing- Choreographed dancing (performance)- Tells a story (narrative)
Mise-en-scene Dreamgirls: - The first shot shows a big sign saying ‘DREAMGIRLS’, this allows the audience to relate to this song without it starting as they are notified what film its from. Beyoncé: - At first Beyoncé is portrayed as a shy person. She's at first seen wearing causal clothing – Jeans and a t-shirt, non of which is revealing. This subverts the stereotypical image of most women represented in R&B music videos. - The choice of clothing wore by the performers in red (from the film) are seen as revealing and highlight their feminist features. This contrasting to the look Beyoncé first appears to have. This may suggest the females want to appeal more to men then the shy Beyoncé, this identifying the post-feminist reading of the ‘Male Gaze’.- The spot light shone of Beyoncé emphasizes her vocals and shows her moving away from her shyness. The spot light and the backing stage lights also relates to the drama/musical convention.- When Beyoncé is seen wearing a grey dress, although the dress is long and is not so revealing she is seen as more confident. Her movements are more sharp and she is seen as more attractive to men (Male Gaze). - Beyoncé’s hair is up and slick, and her make-up is more full this creating a ‘new image’ of her, showing her off in a different way that catches the male eye. - The video ends with the camera moving upwards from the feet slowly showing the rest of her body. This could be seen as the reinforcement of the ‘Male Gaze’, as before when she was seen in jeans and a t-shirt, the full length of her body was hardly seen.- The choreography also subverts the typical performance seen in a R&B video. Ms Knowlesis mostly seen walking, spreading her arms, and slightly moving as all of these again emphasize on her vocals. The movement creates a sense of passion in her singing as the louder or bigger the vocal the more powerful or sharper the movement.- In part of her choreography she is seen matching the lyrics to her movement, e,g: ‘I followed the voice you think you gave to me’ she points to her head when she says ‘think’ and points to herself when she says ‘me’ Scenes from the film:- The scenes from the film which are included in the video almost match the vocals. She’s trying to move from her shy self to someone big and pursue her dreams. The scenes show her being a back-up singer and then moving on to become the lead singer of the Dreams.
Screenshots of Mise-en-scene The spot light and staging lights which adhere to the conventions of drama/musical. Casual clothing which subverts the stereotypical R&B female artist. Contrasting look to Beyoncé – more revealing. ‘New image’ – catches male eye. Subverts typical R&B performance. Movement emphases her vocals. More attractive creating a male gaze.
Camera, Editing and Sound Camera:- The ‘establishing’ shot shows the sign ‘DREAMGIRLS’ this reinforcing the location of the video, a theatre. It also shows what film the soundtrack is from.- The close ups and medium close ups, show Beyoncé’s facial expression, drawing in the audience.- A high angle track is used to show seating. This putting emphasis on the location of the video. - A long shot is used to show Beyoncé present on the stage, here we can also see the stage lighting used. This shot shows her wanting to pursue her dream. We can also clearly see the clothing worn.-A slight high angle shot shows Beyoncé showing off her grey long dress and shows her enthusiasm created whilst singing. This allowing the audience to enjoy her performance and vocals. - A close up, once she has changed allows the audiences to she her hair and make-up and allows them to indentify Beyoncé as a different person.- A 180 turn shows a close up of her face, and then her full figure showing the person she's ended as. This supporting the sense of narrative. Editing: - The use of a wipe, shows her wearing the grey long dress from what she was previously wearing (jeans and t-shirt). The movement of a circle is formed when she's wearing jeans and a t-shirt and is followed through, picking up where she left in the jeans and t-shirt. This editing allows the video to look continuous.- The use of cross-cutting allows the listeners to see the scenes from the film that relate to the song Listen whilst she’s singing. Sound:- It is evident, that the vocals slowly progress and become richer throughout the song. This relates to the meaning of the song, again reinforcing the narrative.
Screenshots of Camera and Editing Wipe: Her she starts spinning .. Establishing shot, shows the location. .. The spin is continued, however wearing different clothing. Close ups show her facial expressions and the difference once changed. Emphases on location. Cross-cut: Scene from the film .. Part of the 180 turn. .. Scene from song straight after.