Monday, January 7, 2008

Las Vegas in restrospect


On Christmas day after the presents were opened, the dinner prepared, and the dishes washed and put away, I hopped on a plane to Barryland. The anticipation of a week of concerts was dampened the week before by the unexpected cancellations. But, as usual the week would not disappoint. It offered some unexpected moments of "Manilow magic" and some moments that had me scratching my head in disbelief.


Friday night was one of those rare moments in time that you relive over and over again, pinching yourself and asking if it all really happened. The show began on Manilow time around 8:30pm. From the first song to the last bedlam reigned. Security did an amazing job controlling things the best they could. During Daybreak a small child under five was dancing in the aisle to the right of me attempting to rush the stage. On the left of me a crazed fan ran toward the stage with a rose in one hand and a determined look to reach Barry at all costs. Throughout the course of the evening there continued distractions. Fans were yelling during the silences. Champagne glasses fell onto the stage from the side stage seats. Signs were hurled and waved at Barry as he approached the side stage. A British flag was thrown onto the stage, along with other items. A bouquet of flowers was hurled across the stage between Barry and his backup singers. During the finale a father with a child on his shoulders rushed the stage yelling "Barry, Barry...say hello to my son". There was a sign on the left stage held by a child claiming his first ever plane ride to see Barry and he actually made an attempt to converse with the child while his mother and grandmother grabbed and pulled at him the entire time.


Its been said that Barry hardly showed up for the show on Friday. Is it any wonder? How could anyone possibly concentrate during such bedlam? I could barely concentrate myself. After the show was over I stood there stunned. I have been to numerous shows in Vegas and I have never witnessed such a display of utter chaos. In spite of it all, Barry managed to give some very moving performances of I Am Your Child, Weekend in New England and Could It Be Magic. He reached inside of himself and you could feel the passion in the words of those songs and how much he was determined to reach that "one" in the audience who was actually listening.


After the show, the evening continued in the same vein it began and the events I witnessed along with the unusual conversations I later had bordered on the unbelievable. Suffice it to say that if anyone had witnessed the entire evening from above they might have wondered if a strange script had been written and those who were participating in the drama were reading it for the first time. The messages were received, however unbelievable they might have seemed.


Saturday night's show was the polar opposite of Friday's. The show was perfection and every moment worked like magic. The only slight flaw came at the end during I Write the Songs when Barry was distracted by his conversations with his backup singers and seemed to forget the words. He offered a slight smirk and continued along with the song unscathed. After the previous evening it was a welcome relief to experience a show that was relatively normal and lacking constant disruption.


The remainder of my trip was an unexpected nightmare that lasted for three more days: illness, missed flights, lost luggage and airfare change fees. Needless to say when the wheels touched down on my flight home I was reeling from a week of unexpected moments and unanticipated twists and turns. But all in all, it was a week that would rival none other. In more ways than one Barry was responsible for some rare moments that will never be forgotten, along with some extraordinary insight and some eye-opening conversations.

Starting 2008 off with a bang, not a whimper...

Texas Fanilow

2 comments:

chrissy said...

Ok girl spill! Just what did you see and hear after the show on Friday? I can't believe the way the audience was acting at the show Friday and these are the kinds of details that get left of the Bnet otherwise known as Fanilow central. It's no wonder Barry avoids his fans when he has to deal with some of juvenile behavior you were describing. I'm glad you had a good time in spite of the missed flight and lost luggage.

texas_fanilow said...

Oh..you know it's never nice to kiss and tell!

 
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