Friday, July 31, 2009

Mayflower and Mishaps

I was back in the Hilton Theater after months and I have to say I've missed the guy. He's just got "it" and never ceases to surprise me with his showmanship and his ability to roll with the punches. And tonight's show was filled with tons of punches. It was a night of Mayflower and mishaps.

I sat in the balcony tonight and I have to say believe it or not I loved it. Firstly because you could actually enjoy the show without screaming maniacs sitting next to you, jumping up and down and yelling during the songs. And secondly because you really do get the full affect of the sets and the staging from that high up and far back. The opening is so much more effective when you can see it from the balcony. The silhouettes are more impressive and the visual affect of the musicians, the singer and the smoke is breathtaking.

As I hoped, Barry decided to give us a replay of the Mayflower segment from the convention shows. As he began to set the stage for the segment, people began to leave. He had already done several of his hits, included an amazing arrangement of "Trying to Get the Feeling" and "Even Now". He walked over to the left side of the stage and he said, "You're leaving? What's the matter? You want to hear Copa?" Then he began to ask the people to stay. People in the balcony begin filing out as well. He seemed incredibily frazzled by it all.

Then the Mayflower segment began and as he was attempting to sing "Not What You See" the keyboard began to malfunction. It was playing two notes when he pressed one key. He yelled out for Ron to help him out and the song was salvaged. He continued to stay in character however and pretend to play as he sang. An incredibly moving performance. Then came "The Night That Tito Played."

The keyboard was moved to the other side of the stage and when he began to play Sandra, the same thing happened. Keely could not hear the music and he said, "We can't do this song. Let's move on." When Ron again rescued him and he and Keely were able to finish Sandra.

After that, "Talk to Me" was absolutely breathtakingly done, and he finished with "Welcome Home" which made me cry, because that song has always meant so much to me. Then he moved on to "Mandy/Could It Be Magic" and did not sing "I Write the Songs". He ended with the usual Copa and the "It's a Miracle Reprise".

I couldn't help but feel the songs he wanted to sing were met by the audience with little enthusiasm. There was very little audience interaction except for a few handshakes on the front row. He stayed far away on both sides of the stage and kept trying to get the audience to participate in the music.

But for me, the show was a once in a lifetime moment. "Sandra" and "Talk to Me" made it special, culminating with "Welcome Home". I would have hated to be the one responsible for the keyboard mishap however. It ruined the flow of the show and noticeably disrupted the rhythm.

That's life however. You can't plan for those unexpected mishaps. The show, however, was about 70 minutes long.

That's my Manilow fix until October, if I'm lucky enough to squeeze him in the weekend of my daughter's wedding. think I could convince him to make an appearance and sing "When October Goes" (her favorite song)?

Here at the Mayflower, it's bedtime!
Texas Fan


ManilowFan34 said...

I think it's a shame when unthinking people walk out on, or otherwise put-down/harass Barry or any other performer, for that matter. It is completely tasteless!

Barry pours his heart and soul into every show and when people treat him that way, it hurts him very much. Then to read he even asked the people to stay? That's sad and heartbreaking for me. It's like he's begging. He shouldn't feel as though he needs to do that. I know he wants everyone there to be happy with him and what he's doing, but still...

I had high hopes for last night's show. That the audience would give him a warm, "Welcome back, Barry! We missed you!" reception, therefore getting him stoked for the rest of the weekend. Looks like I was wrong.

Maybe tonight's audience will be better. I hope. For everyone's sake.

Mary said...

I hope he does the Mayflower songs at the Hollywood Bowl concert as i will be coming over to that with a friend and then hopefully and finally will see the show in Vegas. Roll on October/November!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for taking the time to let us know about last night. I had seen the Mayflower segment in May and agree the crowd does not respond it it. However, they obviously have spent alot of $$$ for the sets, I am not surprised it is still around.

Thanks was nice to wake up to a woohoo-less review :)


Debbie said...

Thanks for the review Suzanne. Oh how I wish I could have been sitting right next to you at the show. I would love to hear Welcome Home and Talk to Me. Two of my favorites. I feel so bad that people were leaving during the show. I can just imagine what was going through Barry's mind.

Jill said...

I really feel for him. Things happen. I have done some little theater and know how hard it is to recover when someone really screws up or something doesn't go right. I am a little surprised that people would leave in mid performance. That is rude.

redcat said...

Wow....that's really awful for him...why on earth were people leaving? What were they expecting? And I imagine he was royally ripped when the equipment wouldn't work. What a shame. Hopefully, they'll get it fixed and it'll be better....

Anonymous said...

Were you able to find out if those that were leaving were fans or civilians? I'm sure, after being away since the end of May, he was anxious to get back on stage.

I have a friend who will be there tonight. It will be interesting to see if the show is changed in any way because of the audience reaction last night.

Dawn said...

Thank you, Suzanne for this lovely account of what happened last night!! It was so nice of you to share it all with us the way you did

I TOTALLY agree about the balcony. I've only sat up there once, and I love the effects you get. The only problem for me is that I can't see the people and actions from up there because of the visual impairment I have, but the lighting and effects overall is as you said, breathtaking. I think everyone should have that perspective at least once. Just so happened when I sat up there, I was with a good friend and my mom. I had seen the show before, so I knew what was going on so it made it a bit easier for me to visualize. I was sitting next to this old couple of which the lady hadn't seen him in a long time and she was sheer JOY to watch.

SO SORRY people felt the need to LEAVE!! How RUDE. Crap like that angers me to n oend. I know it hurts Barry... It's just WRONG!! If they didn't wanna BE THERE The shouldn't have been in the first place.

Except for the keyboard problems and the rudeness, I hope he at least found a way to enjoy himself with the ones of you who did participate and like what he did. I'm sorry, I just can't figure out how ANYONE would wanna walk out on MAYFLOWER.

Sorry so long just finger happy today lol Thanks again Suzanne!

Dawn Bushman said...

Wow, what a rough return to the stage. I'm sorry to hear people leaving, and sorry to hear that Barry's keyboard was making such a problem.

I'll be there on Saturday night, front row on the floor. I'm not one of those who jumps up and screams at people, but if I see people leaving I'll give Barry my brightest smile from the audience. Hopefully that will cheer him up. :o)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the review, the only one I've seen. It's so sad that the audience was rude and started walking out like that. That's their loss and the rest of the audience's gain. I'm sure it hurt Barry a bit, though, I feel that those that stayed are true Barry Manilow supporters!


Anonymous said...

poor BARRY..cant believe ppl would leave..cant see it being us FANILOWS...LOVE YAH BARRY..Saw you at the convention and loved the MAYFLOWER..Will be seeing you in Jersey and Connecicut Aug 14th and 15th....

Bonnie said...

With the show being on hiatus for the last two months, one would think that these "issues" with the equipment would have been worked out by now and the show would have gone on without a hitch. Perhaps the "sound guy" is another one of Garry's relatives, and can't be fired LOL.

But seriously, it's just plain rude to walk out on any performer. I've been to other shows where the "star" stunk the joint out, and yet I continued to stay and show them the respect they deserve. After all, most of the time, they are working their hearts out on stage.

Hopefully the rest of this weekends shows will be better for Barry and the audience.

Anonymous said...

Most of Barry's true "fans" go on the weekends for the shows. Sounds like last night might have been a high roller night with some of the tickets being given out for free to people who just aren't interested. All they want to do is gamble and drink! They seem the rudest people in all of Vegas and we all know Barry doesn't think much of them either.

As far as the technical difficulties's not the first time and it more than likely won't be the last. All that equipment is so touchy. At least the show went on! Sorry I missed Talk To Me. That's one of my favorites on the CD.

Thanks for the review, Sue. Seems like the ones that brag the most about going are the least likely to think of others and post for everyone else who can't be there.

And the screamers embarrass all the others there who "act their ages" and respect the man.

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