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Hammersmith Apollo - 4 May 2013
06/05/13 @ 05:14:41 am, Categories: General, 774 words   English (UK)

Sorry to be so late with this but we have been so busy that there simply was no time to sit down and do this properly. Now it’s the day off and here we go.

For those of you wondering what it is like to be present at the DVD recording: There is no big difference from a normal concert except you see more people in black standing on the stage holding cameras. Usually the only people in black clothes you see during a concert are technicians. They did not obstruct our view once and you totally forgot about them after one or two songs. This was different when we were at the DVD recording at Hammersmith a few years back. They had to change people’s seats (from the front side block to the back!) to make room for the camera crane but luckily the lenses have evolved and now no such drastic action was necessary.
Sir Tim Rice sat right behind us (centre row G, we were aisle row F) and seemed to enjoy the show immensely. Especially when Michael kept singing song after song of his. We kept hearing the word “amazing” being muttered. Quite right.

Oh, we never posted the set list, did we? But it’s all over the internet anyways. Nevertheless, here goes:

Act 1
Edge Of Glory
Marry Me
Fight The Fight
Closest Thing To Crazy
Songbird
Both Sides Now
Love And Affection
I Won’t Let You Go
When She Loved Me
I Will Always Love You
Run
Act 2:
Circle Of Life
Being Alive
Pretty Woman/Not While I’m Around
Anthem
Empty Chairs Empty Tables
Suddenly
Do You Hear The People Sing
The Perfect Song
Close Every Door To Me - Adrian
Don’t Cry For Me Argentina- Soophia
All I Ask Of You - Michael & Alice
Tell Me On A Sunday
Memory
Sunset Boulevard
Oh What A Circus
Any Dream Will Do
Love Changes Everything

Encore:
One Step Out Of Time
You Can’t Stop The Beat
Help Yourself
Wonder Of You

As London is his home venue the atmosphere is usually electric and this night was no exception luckily. We are hoping this will come across accordingly on the recording. They loved him from the word go. His family was there to support him and we are sure this helped after the trauma of having been burgled (why do terrible things happen to someone so incredibly nice?!). It was wonderful to watch. And BOY did he perform. This DVD will be stunning if they even catch 10% of his energy. It was the second and final concert for Julia’s mum and she was rendered speechless (well, no, actually she found her whooohooo ;-)). Songbird, When She Loved Me and Run were our highlights of the first half. The things he can do with his voice (during Run while swaying his arm and body!)… All praise to Mr Todd for challenging Michael to explore a new range of voice and opening a new approach to singing. The album has such an intimate feel to it, loungy, like in a dark and cosy jazz club, you hear every syllable clearly pronounced and he paces himself so precisely. Sometimes when the sound is well-balanced, you feel engulfed by this luscious blanket of perfect sound and cannot help a little swoon. Then come the money notes and leave you gasping.

Highlights of act 2 were definitely Sunset Boulevard, Anthem and Being Alive. We would have given him standing ovations after every song but didn’t want to look like morons LOL. But in all honesty he would have deserved them. This was an outstanding performance and he worked so hard up there to deliver sublime entertainment for us all.

At the end we thought people would tear apart the Apollo (which looks a bit tired, it has to be said) with ecstasy. Stamping and howling for more before he returned to the stage for the encore.

This was definitely a standout performance and the best concert of all eight we have seen so far. What a joy to have been there.

The slight downer for us were two women who were clearly very drunk and kept shouting at inappropriate places, clapping into his moderations and generally were very badly behaved. At least they shouted appreciative stuff but it was still annoying. This happens so often, we wish they would not sell alcohol at venues. Sorry when this seems harsh but the number of times some drunk audience member fell over others at party time or ruined a quiet moment by shouting silly stuff into the silence…Ah well, rant over.

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