Thursday, July 13, 2017
I can see you…Idina Menzel delights at Jacobs Pavilion
Near the end of her delightful concert at Jacobs Pavilion located in the Flats, multi-award winner Idina Menzel told the story of how, when some South Africans meet, they look directly at each other. One says, “I can see you.” The other, after making solid eye contact, repeats the phrase. Menzel, demonstrated clearly, as the concert proceeded that she, in fact, was seeing her audience, taking them in, and appreciating their presence. The audience vocally and with extended applause responded by letting her know that they, too, could see her!
The concert, presented with seven musicians and a back-up singer, all of whom did solos and were recognized by the headliner, was presented before an ever-changing mélange of electronic media which paralleled the song choices.
The talented songstress, songwriter, Broadway, television and movie star, was relaxed and charming in interacting with the audience, recognizing not only those in the high priced seats who were up close and personal, but those seated in the bleachers.
She invited a young girl, who was carrying an “I love you Idina” sign, on stage to get her poster autographed, graciously accepted a pony-tail band from another child and asked her hair-dresser on stage to redo her hairstyle so that he could braid some of the star’s hair and added the jeweled stretchy, and also invited all the kids in attendance to come onto the steps and the edge of the stage to individually and jointly sing “Let It Go” from the hit film “Frozen.”
The concert not only included songs from her newest album and old time favorites, but selections from her Broadway shows “Rent” and “Wicked,” as well as “Don’t Rain on My Parade” from “Funny Girl” and “Wind Beneath My Wings” from “Beaches.”
Many talented stars appear in the concert venues of CLE, but few have the warmth and authenticity of Idina Menzel! This lady is a true “mench” (Yiddish for “a true human being, a good person.”)
Menzel’s openness to the audience, her kid-inclusiveness, courtesy to her joint performers and fine singing voice, made for a fine evening of entertainment. Applause, applause!