Nottingham Concert Review
Nottingham (2nd June)
After witnessing Vanessa-Mae the previous night at the Royal Albert Hall, when
I was seated towards the back, I decided this time to watch the concert on the
very front row, to see at first hand what all the fuss was about.
I was pleased to see that the concert hall was full (probably holds in the
region of 1,500 - 1,600 people). Anyway, the show started and the first number
was Blessed Spirits which is a great moving track to start off with. Then "I
feel love" was played and out came Vanessa-Mae from one of the two exits at the
back of the stalls section. Unlike the Royal Albert Hall there was very little
room to play with (i.e. the seats were close together and only two alleyways),
but this didn't stop her fascinating the audience with her friendliness. I love
the way she gets the crowd so involved and excited at such an early stage in
her pop fusion concerts. Anyway, when she did get on stage she started dancing
with the dancers, and the dance steps were truly magnificent.
Vanessa then thanked everybody for coming and we were all going to have a
storming show. After the nice opening speech, Hocus Pocus was played (which is
not one of my favourites, but it is a different "kettle of fish" when heard
live) and then moving onto the unforgettable Retro number. After Retro, the
moving number of Aurora was played. After the beauty of Aurora we were treated
to Poet's Quest (which the string quartet must be given a special thank you).
Then we were treated to a beautiful classic section, the first piece Midnight
Bells by Kreisler was dedicated to Frank Sinatra and was a truly moving piece.
The next piece was Tzigane by Ravel (again a majestic piece). Both these pieces
received a great ovation for which they so richly deserved.
The next number was (I) Can, Can (You ?) which was a great crowd pleaser (like
the previous night) and the atmosphere in the crowd was electric. She also
dedicated this piece to the England football team and also wished them the best
of luck in the world cup .
After the interval, Leyanda was played and tonight "Gizmo" didn't go out of
tune. Then she played Contradanza (which I'm glad she included on this tour,
because it's probably my favourite pop piece). Moving on, the next number was
Bach Street Prelude which was so elegantly played by both Vanessa and the band.
The next number was the piece that made Vanessa-Mae famous, Toccata and Fugue
followed by the famous and unforgettable Red Hot, loved by so many on the list.
The next number was "I'm a-Doun for lack O' Johnny". Vanessa started playing
the piece on the piano for the opening vocal lines and moved swiftly onto the
violin for the rest of the piece. It was such a nice touch to see Vanessa-Mae
play the opening lines on the piano. This is such a great moving piece and
never fails to create a deep impression.
Then Vanessa talked about how she felt playing at the Hong Kong handover. She
then went on to say that the next two numbers would be a combination of the old
and new times in modern day China. Butterfly Lovers Concerto was played for
some four minutes and then the music transferred straight into the Happy Valley
piece (which is probably my favourite Vanessa-Mae piece). A truly great piece
with so much happening on stage.
Then Vanessa-Mae thanked everybody for coming and said we'd been a fantastic
audience. Then she finished with Storm (and what a Storm it was!). After the
Storm had finished, I stood up and applauded but I didn't realise I was the
first person to stand up in the whole hall (Vanessa actually thanked me! At
this point I went all shy, which is unlike me, and I could feel myself blush).
She then went off stage and came back on for the encore. Vanessa then said she
wanted to see everybody clap and get into the spirit of things for the last
number, (I) Can, Can (You?) (encore). She then went darting around the narrow
alleyways again with most of the people out of their seats clapping and
dancing. Then the amazing concert ended and I didn't want to go to bed :( Oh
well, Liverpool in three days time.
You have to give a great deal of credit to the band, singers, dancers,
classical section, the crew, Mel Bush Organization and everybody connected with
delivering this unbelievable tour of concerts. All I can say is, thank you very