I love awkward performances and these two performances on the Oscar show have stayed with me because they were so out of the ordinary.
This first one is endearingly awkward as Elliott Smith comes out of the indie underground to play to a mainstream audience. The song is Miss Misery and it comes from the 1997 film Good Will Hunting.
Accompanied by the house orchestra, Smith had to be convinced by the producers to perform the song at the ceremony, as he had not intended to do so. They informed him that his song would be played live that night, whether by him or another musician of their choosing. They also purportedly rejected his style of performing while sitting in a chair. Smith says, “I walked out and Jack Nicholson was sitting about six feet away, so I avoided that area and I looked up at the balcony in the back and sang the song.” Beforehand, he said that “Mainly I just want to go so I can wear my white suit. I always have a great time when I wear my white suit.”
Elliott ended up losing (as did practically everyone) to the movie, “Titanic” and the theme “My Heart Will Go On”.
The song “Let It Go” from the movie Frozen won the Oscar for Best Original Song but everyone remembers John Travolta introducing the singer as “the wickedly talented Adele Dazeem”. Idina Menzel has had to explain the story ever since. Fun Fact: Co-songwriter of “Let It Go” Robert Lopez became the 12th person, and by far the quickest (10 years), to win an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony in their career.