Ben Platt’s Netflix special offers new insight into his songs and journey


photo courtesy of Creative Commons

Ben Platt releases new Netflix special.

Nini Panner, Reporter

Ben Platt recently released a must-watch Netflix special featuring emotional and energetic performances fit for all ages. “Ben Platt: Live At Radio City Hall” showcases the singer, actor and songwriter’s incredible talent and skill on the stage and adds to his already long list of achievements and performances.

Although only 26, Platt has had a long career, beginning on Broadway in “The Book of Mormon” and has since starred in movies such as “Pitch Perfect,” and “Run This Town,” the play “Dear Evan Hansen” and the Netflix show, “The Politician.” This performance, however, consists of songs from his debut pop album released in March 2019, “Sing to Me Instead.”

The special was recorded on Platt’s last stop on his “Sing to Me Instead” Tour in September. The recording of the performance allows an inside look into Platt’s performing process and backstage preparation.

The concert film explains the background behind many of his songs that I and many other fans hadn’t known before. For example, viewers learn that his hit song “Honest Man” is about his former relationship with a closeted man and how that caused him to struggle with shame and embarrassment about his sexuality.

His shameless honesty is refreshing for a performer and allows the audience, virtual and live, to connect to his experiences. This is highlighted by the flawless editing of the concert. The recording of the concert allows the audience to get up close to Platt, unlike a typical live concert experience.

As well as hits from his debut album, Platt performs covers of pop songs such as “The Joke” by Brandi Carlile and “Take Me To The Pilot” by Elton John. Although these are wonderful songs already, Platt offers a unique performance. His impressive range and lively personality, along with a remarkable band and background singers make you want to listen to the songs on repeat.

Although most of the concert makes you want to get up and dance around with Platt, he provides emotional performances of many of his songs. His song “Ease My Mind” is about one of Platt’s stable relationships as well as his experience publicly coming out as a gay man. He isn’t ashamed of himself and spreads his confidence and self-love to every person watching.

The great performances and emotions Platt showcases throughout the special brought members of the live audience — and me — to tears. He is somehow able to switch through such strong emotions instantly, keeping you on the edge of your seat through it all.

Even if you haven’t listened to Platt’s album, this special is a great way to hear some amazing vocals and experience the energy of a live concert that is unavailable right now.