So, I guess it’s time for me to write the report.
I had to run some errands today, and when I came back home I sort of passed out (hubby says I fell asleep, but it felt like passing out) because it was really hot today and I have some low blood pressure issues every now and then in this weather. Now it’s past 5 am and I’m not sleepy at all. So here I am, cup of herbal tea with honey at reach, ready to write about the concert.
I must say that when I got home yesterday I was feeling sort of disappointed in the audience. You see, we (by that I mean Majorcans) tend to be respectfully silent at concerts. We aren’t inclined to join in the singing, or to clap to the music, or anything like that. I remember my other favourite singer
talking about it in an interview. He said it took him some time to learn to recognise that attitude as one of reverent admiration. I guess this is what happened yesterday. Or a part of it.
I was terribly shocked when only a tiny percentage of the audience reacted to the “I didn’t come to Palma to fool you” (I remember mumbling in desperation to my husband “They haven’t even noticed!”), or when Leonard remained silent to let us sing “Hey, that’s no way to say goodbye”. Or when so very few joined in “So long, Marianne” or “Hallelujah”. And I must admit I looked at the central aisle when “Take This Waltz” started, sort of hoping that someone would start waltzing there, as it happened in Lisbon. I even missed the screams of the woman next to me in Lisbon (“put your money where your mouth is!”) when Leonard said “if you want a father for your child…” while singing I’m Your Man, or the general response to that song.
I suppose that there are more factors that had to do with this lack of response than the reverent attitude I mentioned before. One is the (lack of) English language skills of the people around here, and the other, I guess, is that I expected too much of the audience. What I mean is, I had learnt the ritual before and they hadn’t. You see, by the time I went to Lisbon last year, I had already watched many YouTube videos of the previous concerts, and I knew when we were expected to join in. I knew that he had said “I didn’t come to (name city) to fool you”, and so I waited until I heard the word Lisbon to respond. And of course, all the rituals were reinforced this year in Lisbon. So I suppose one could say that yesterday I was a pro and the others were just amateurs, or at least that’s how it felt.
The concert was amazing, I think I said that much yesterday. The performances were brilliant, and Leonard came in and out of the stage jumping about and in a very good mood. He didn’t speak much during the concert, though. He did say that he didn’t know when they’d be coming this way again and so they were determined to give us all they had, and they did. When he introduced “Anthem” he recited a poem, he didn’t introduce it the way he did in Lisbon, which wouldn’t have been appropriate here after the recent events, of course. I got to see the gymnastics for the first time. Now I don’t know if the other times I just wasn’t looking when they happened, or if they just didn’t happen.
When “Hey, that’s no way to say goodbye” started, I was the one who couldn’t help a big, delighted “Ohhhh”. Just in case it was too loud, it was me. I just didn’t expect the song, and it made me happy. “Chelsea Hotel” would have made me happier, but… at least I got to listen to “Famous Blue Raincoat” twice in a fortnight. My first other two concerts always ended with these words from me: “Too bad he didn’t sing FBR…” and a sigh, these last two ended with “Wow! And he sang FBR!”.
What else? I had never been to the Palma Arena, but I had heard it had terrible acoustics. Well, they weren’t so bad. Actually, the sound was great from where I was sitting. I can’t speak for the rest of the place, though. I also think that the Auditorium would have been a better choice. That’s where I heard Leonard for the first time in 1988 and I also have fond memories (of that concert and of all the other concerts and shows I’ve seen there). It’s true that it is much smaller than the Arena but the acoustics are wonderful. Actually, I thought that the tickets were very expensive for this concert, but I would have thought they were OK if the concert had been at the Auditorium.
The royalty. I must make a statement first. I don’t do monarchy, right? I couldn’t care less about them. I didn’t even notice them going past us, it was my husband who saw them and told me they were there. I don’t know if they paid for their ticket or not, but I suppose they didn’t.
When I went to get my tickets, the guy at the shop told me that strange things had happened with the first rows. Apparently the first 11 rows hadn’t been for sale from the beginning, then some rows were added, then some places were placed for sale… I suppose it means that those places were reserved for authorities.
They didn’t stay until the end either. When the people moved forward to the stage as “So long, Marianne” started, some alarms must have gone off somewhere in the security department, because when the song was over a group of people rushed out through the central aisle. So, you see, they still come here on holiday because they are not afraid of ETA, but they rush out of a concert when some LC fans get too close…
Also, the woman who was sitting next to me told me that Leonard and his crew were staying at the same hotel where she was staying, and that they had been there for a few days. It was nice to know that they chose our little island for a little rest between concerts.
As for the “priestly blessings” they were very similar to those in Lisbon. No mention of tricky weather or summer colds, though. I guess it’s just too hot here to think about that.
And I guess that’s it, at least for now. If I remember anything else, I’ll come back.