I recently saw an awesome performance by the singer/songwriter Khari Wendell McClelland. It was in an intimate venue, where the audience all seemed within reach of where he was on the stage, at all times. He began and ended his show solo, singing, without a microphone.
There is something deeply moving for me about hearing the human voice un-amplified. Same with many instruments (including tap dancing). The sounds affect me differently. I pay a different kind of attention. I am moved differently by the experience.
For me this true on either side of the curtain, as performer or audience member. While I gladly admit to the many benefits of amplification, I also advocate for the least amount to be used in any presentation.
In a world where electronics have become the mediator of so many interactions, I wonder what would happen if we changed the current trend in the performing arts. I wonder what experiences we would have if we stripped away the decorations and returned to nature?