Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Yanni Voices Tour...Opening night
Opening night for Yanni's Voices Tour was, just as he has continually said, "expect the unexpected!" This is a different Yanni...
Thanks to sponsors Yanni Voices, Disney, and One2OneNetwork, myself and 3 others were able to procure 4 incredible seats to Opening Night with Yanni Voices. We couldn't have asked for better seats, honestly. Thank you to our sponsors!
The show started a bit late... about 8:15. As with all opening night performances, there were a few minor glitches.(minor to us, but I am sure frustrating to the performers...as Yanni later thanked all of us South Floridians for our opening night patience.) Before I go any further, I highly recommend for you to go to the following link and learn about who Yanni is. (http://www.yanni.com/Music.aspx) This link brings you through many of the years and countries where he has performed amongst a great many cultures. And, until now, it has been all instrumental... That is the Yanni we have known and loved. But this is an "evolved" Yanni, as were his own words. In fact, if you want an in depth understanding of his music until now, please stop and take the time to watch the videos at the Voices Tour site. You will find the videos about the tour, under EXCLUSIVES, on the far left side of their website. Read about his 4 new VOICES, Nathan Pacheco, Ender Thomas, Chloe, and Leslie Mills. Nathan truly won most of our hearts that night. What a talented and gifted young man. His voice is incredible. He has a sweet and gentle spirit( yet POWERFUL voice!) that he brings with him to the Tour. Yanni on piano and Nathan's voice... well, let's just say we were truly mesmerized! Nathan himself is incredible. He had standing ovations throughout the night. Of course, we cannot forget the young girls heart throb, Ender Thomas... ladies were yelling out his name the moment he arrived on stage. I am sure that encouraged him. Ender had the audience standing, swaying, and dancing throughout the night to his music. He has a great voice...is a very gifted young man who has won his audiences. Both Ender and Nathan put their all in all into their music; it is so precisely clear and evident in its deliverance. Leslie and Chloe are both beautiful and talented performers. Chloe's voice is powerful and emotional. She has power in both her voice and her stage performance. Her voice is full and you can tell she puts her whole heart into it. I believe this is only the beginning for this young woman in her performance as a great musician. She has powerful stage presence. Leslie, is very different in her performance as much as her voice is different from Chloe. Leslie has more of a whisper in her voice, even though her voice is also very powerful. It is as if she is speaking to you beyond the words coming from her mouth. Leslie's voice somehow, tells a story... One we are just beginning to listen to... She is very in tune with Yanni, and you can tell she is very much woven into this new tapestry of music Yanni has given us.
Yanni and Ric Wake, his co-producer, have truly created a great work by joining these performers,...Nathan, Ender, Chloe, and Leslie. I was also impressed by the clear appreciation of these performers towards Yanni and the orchestra, this was evident through their actions and their own words. Yanni has done such an incredible job in bringing together musicians from so many parts of the world with amazing talents. They bond together and work in harmony, thus producing sounds that stir their audiences beyond expectations. The cellist, the violinists, the Paraguayan harpist, the drummers, guitarists, all make the tour what it is. I like what he said in one of his recent interviews... "the best of my life is now about to begin!"... It is evident with this new tour, that he not only is still a gifted musician , but is determined to help other musicians around the world to fulfill their dreams and aspirations for the future. Thank you Yanni, for bringing together this orchestra and these 4 young people for this tour.
As an editor, I have an obligation to my readers. I have waited a few days, as I wanted to have time to formulate how to express my review and opinion of the tour in the following manner as well. I believe that I need to share that I also feel that part of this tour program is not appropriate for those of conservative family values or with children. In the past, Yanni's tours have always been classical, instrumental, and appropriate for families, even though he has been classified many times as New Age World Music. that is the Yanni we have known. But this new tour brings with it, about half way through the show, a disturbing performance which opens with rings of fire in the background, and views on the staging of flowing sheets along with the fire. Right away, I am sure you get the picture of the scene they are trying to create in the mind. And then we have a time where I actually turned my head away, as did my guests, to avoid the erotic scenes and movements of Chloe and Leslie which totally surprised us and took us off guard. Chloe and Leslie were a bit more provocatively dressed than for other numbers, and then during their songs for this portion of the program, were climbing up on the piano and laying on top of it making extremely sensual movements. My guests told me this was not only surprising, but sad, and actually changed how they felt about this new tour. I have to say this was totally unnecessary. Without this addition of erotica to the tour program they would have received a total appreciation from even their conservative audiences across the country. I wanted to run up to Yanni and say "why? This was unnecessary. It was actually offensive to many of us, and showed lack of respect towards these precious young ladies, Chloe and Leslie. Yanni, you could cut that entire part of the tour out of the program and win all of our hearts!..Yanni, would you want your own daughter or granddaughter in the audience for that part of the program?"
So, enough said. My hope is that somehow, just somehow, Yanni's sponsors and PR people read this and take note... That they re-organize the program ( it isn't too late to do that Yanni!), so that it is appropriate for any age and culture to attend. That is the belief of many of us across the nation, and in particular, from some of your fellow "neighbors" here in South Florida! Yanni, we appreciate your work... please hear and listen to what we are sharing with you. And I would love to hear your response, which would let me know you heard.