Monday, 2 March 2015

One Direction v Einaudi?

Firstly thank you for the lovely and supportive comments and messages after my last blog post that came to me via Facebook, texts, email, blogger and even a couple of phone calls. I am so glad to know that I'm not the only one feeling a bit wonky with things! 

When I write something that's a little more personal I do occasionally agonize about sharing. I wrote that last post in a little slot of time between the supermarket shop and waiting for Sibs to return from school. I didn't over think it as I can sometimes do, it was just a quick release.  I have many posts that once written never go any further than the drafts folder and this was almost one of them.  Then, for whatever reason I asked Sibs to read it as she was so involved in the content and with her approval I pressed publish.  I was quite taken aback with the big virtual hug that I felt - thank you, diolch.

So now back to something a little more frivolous and a little less soul sharing - a story for the memory bank.

A couple of Wednesdays ago I had a sort of double booking - I wanted to be in two places at the same time.

Let me tell you a bit more.

Some years ago friends back in the UK introduced me to the Italian pianist and composer Ludovico Einaudi.  Unfortunately I had never had the opportunity to hear him play live, so I was rather excited to find out he was coming to Brisbane and eagerly waited for the announcement of the date of his concert.  That date however seemed rather familiar....

Ah, yes, that would be the same night that 'One Direction' were in town. The night that Sibs had etched in her brain and on her calendar and that was on a countdown on her phone!

A part of me wanted to go and sit still in the quiet of QPAC Concert Hall and be mesmerised by Einaudi. Yet, I also wanted to be witness to the sheer joy that Sibs was bound to experience whilst she screamed her way through a few hours at Suncorp Stadium.

Could I choose the noise, the craziness, the hysteria over the brilliance of the Italian maestro?

I could possibly and probably have found a chaperon to take Sibs to Suncorp but I would have missed so much...
  • The excitement on the bus to the city where groups of girls and pairs of mothers and daughters were in various stages of anticipation.
  • The embarrassed giggles of my 12 year old when I pulled out some ham sandwiches from my bag. ( I had to sneakily eat one hidden under my seat as she was quite mortified!)
  • The funny "We love you Niall" that the two boys behind us shouted whenever the Irish one even remotely looked in our direction.
  • The scream that could possibly have perforated my left eardrum when Harry the one with the lovely hair walked close by and actually waved and blew kisses.
  • The little game we played to point out the best outfits. The two older ladies that had the skin tight 1D t-shirts and flashing headbands easily won, with the dad in the home decorated t-shirt a close second and the toddler in the white high heels came in third!
I have been fortunate to attend quite a few live music events and always have a good time but there is often a level of reserved enjoyment. Of course there are those who can really let it go but most hover on the side of enthusiastic toe tapping. Not long after moving to Australia one of my absolute favourite singers was touring with a farewell show. I treated myself to a good seat as this was it - the last opportunity to ever see him again....
The place was packed, the stage was ready, the music started, I got to my feet.....and I appeared to be the only one!
As the night went on, a few more managed to get up and join in with some rather unenthusiastic bopping, but I was less than impressed. (Sorry Mick)
There have been other bands that I have seen that have been more successful at getting the Brisbane crowds going, but I seriously doubt that any can get quite the same reaction as One Direction.

One Direction Suncop Stadium Brisbane Feb 2015
Whatever you may think of the commercialism that is the One Direction machine, their much anticipated live performances are pretty enjoyable.  Partly because of the energy that they have on stage but in the main because the audience is just happy to have a really good time.
If I'm to be a little over critical then they did appear to be slightly under rehearsed and surprisingly as this is the start of the tour they even looked a bit tired. The fun banter element between them that was in abundance in previous tours was not quite there but I suppose Suncorp Stadium is a little vast to really capture that. They did however still manage to flutter the hearts of those close to the stage with the constant waves and occasional short exchange of words.

The great thing was that they encouraged that wonderful spontaneity and lack of inhibition that we somehow lose a bit of as we age.  If the crowd felt like dancing, jumping, screaming, laughing or singing, then they just did it. No self conscious toe tapping bopping here!  Everyone lived the moment and it was hard not to get caught up in that. Ok, there was the one mum who sat down in the row in front - yes, sat in the row in front (maybe she wanted to be at the Einaudi concert?  Or maybe she was the same mum that sat with arms crossed behind me at the last 1D concert ??) but most people were on their feet. There were a few microphone and musical glitches but no-one seemed to notice and if they did, they just didn't care.

So I watched the crowd and it really made me smile. I watched Sibs and I was so happy to be next to her. So happy to be in that moment of experiencing her literally jumping for joy and just being twelve.

One Direction Suncorp Stadium Brisbane Feb 2015 

I later found out that the Einaudi concert was as I expected -  exceptionally good. There is no questioning the talent of the Italian pianist.  However, with his back almost to the people, Mr Einaudi apparently shared one mumbling "thank you Brisbane" with his audience.

Each member of One Direction thanked Brisbane and Australia over and over again. There were fireworks and streamers and laser lighting. They told their audience that they were beautiful and amazing and everyone felt the love. Us oldies even got a thank you for bringing whoever we brought to the concert. Tick!

I'm glad I made the choice that I made that night. I got to enjoy the performance for different reasons to the majority. Yes, I did appreciate the catchy songs but more than that I absolutely loved the atmosphere. I felt quite young and alive.....and happy.

A few days after the concert I was at home doing some housework and as usual I put the ipod on shuffle to help me along. Without a word of a lie out of almost 900 tracks the first track was "That's what makes you beautiful" by One Direction, but rather more disturbing was the fact that Ludovico Einaudi kept on popping up at a rather alarming regularity! It was almost as if he knew I had stood him up!
Ludovico, you'll just have to come back to Brisbane -  just make sure it's not the same day as a rather popular boy band!

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3 Comments and thoughts:

  1. Oh Beth what fun it must have been to be with Sibs at One Direction. I would have been there in a heart beat. I think I saw the same Mick in Dublin in the mid 60's and it was one memorable concert.
    Somehow live concerts have a way with staying with us for life and I am never disappointed.
    Helen xx

    1. It really was fun Helen and I agree, there's something about live concerts that's just a bit magic.
      The Mick that was in Dublin in the mid 60's definitely would have got the crowd going! I actually saw him a few months ago and he still has the swagger and the moves. The particular concert that I mentioned in my post was the Simply Red farwell tour with Mick Hucknall.

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