|Niagara Falls.... I guess I should start at the beginning. :-)
When I heard there would be shows in Niagara Falls, I knew right then I was going to have to make a road trip. As some of you already know, I love the Falls even when Donna isn't playing there. So I kidnapped my friend Patty, and we hit the road on Tuesday and then played tourist all day Wednesday and part of Thursday. (We kept seeing Donna's picture every time we walked near the Fallsview - which was quite often since our hotel was less than a block from there.) That was fun but the best was yet to come.
The first concert was Thursday night by a lucky coincidence, Patty and I were seated only 2 seats away from another pair of diehard fans. The couple between us was happy to trade seats, so we had a nice little group of 4 diehards together. (That always makes it a little more fun.) The theater was nice. It's fairly intimate and I think that there probably isn't a bad seat in the house. (But boy was it hot in there!) We were in the third row, so we were golden.... but from what I saw of the balconies, etc I don't think any of those seats would have been bad. The only thing that was really annoying about the theater was that they are extremely strict about cameras. They weren't stopping you from bring in your cameras - I think they know in a location like Niagara Falls, that would be a losing battle. But boy were they all about stopping you from using them. If any of you ever watched the TV show Seinfeld, think of the Soup Nazi. These guys were the camera Nazis. LOL If you even thought the word "camera" they were all over you with their flashlights - "No camera for you!" LOL I had an aisle seat Friday and they were up and down the aisle all night long with those flashlights. So Niagara Falls may be the most unphotographed shows of the whole tour.
I guess now is a good time to run down the set list. It was a slightly modified version of last year's Crayons set.. Apparently the Fallsview requires the shows to be no more than 90 minutes. I winder, if Donna had run long would the venue people have rushed the stage with their little flashlights saying, "No more music for you!"? (I have a mental picture of that in my head that is totally cracking me up at the moment. LOL)
Donna opened with The Queen Is Back (of course!), followed by I Feel Love, and some chatting with the audience where she sang a few lines of a Joni Mitchell song. (I still can't remember the name of the song - I must be getting old. LOL) As always Donna encouraged everyone to have a good time - sing if you wanna sing, etc. She also joked that if you don't stand up at one of her shows, you get thrown out. I mention this because that line will have a little more meaning when I get to Friday's part of the story.
So moving on, there was Dim All The Lights, I'm A Fire, Sand On My Feet, On The Radio, Be Myself Again, Mr. Music, Crayons, Enough Is Enough (with Mary), MacArthur Park, Stamp Your Feet, Hard For The Money, Bad Girls, Hot Stuff and of course the usual closing number.... Shout It Out. ;-) I'm teasing, it was Last Dance.
Donna was relaxed and funny and having a good time. The audience was a bit... um... dead. Well at first anyway. No one stood for The Queen is Back which I sort of expected because not that many casual fans know it yet. I was stunned that no one stood for I Feel Love, but I chalked that up to the casual people not knowing they are supposed to get up and have fun. After Donna told people to have fun, the first 3 rows (and a few pockets of people here and there) finally loosened up and danced, but there were a lot of statues sitting in the rows behind me.
One thing I noticed, was that the lyrics to Be Myself Again were slightly changed. The line that goes "I hope you got what you came for" was switched to "I hope all your dreams came true" or something like that.
And another weird thing I noticed is that a lot the statues who were sitting for all the songs, managed to stand up for Last Dance. I'm really not sure why you would wait until the very last song to have fun?
After that, it was something to eat with friends and a night of not sleeping in the hotel. (It's hard to sleep through an adrenalin rush! LOL) Then up the next day to do it all again. :-) This time we decided to take it easy, so no long treks along the Falls. Just a little gambling and then some pre-show festivities with some of the other fans we ran into. (That was so much fun! I can't even tell you how great it was hanging out - Summer Fever is best shared with friends. :-) )
Friday's set list was the same as Thursday's... with one exception. Be Myself Again was replaced by La Vie En Rose - just the same way she did it in Paris. That went over really well with the audience. :-) (On a side note - there was actually a little shop next to the theater that was called La Vie En Rose.)
The audience. Ugh. I was thinking that a Friday crowd would be more rowdy.... not that Friday crowd. They took their seats and most of them were determined not to move an inch. Now I should explain that Friday the diehards were scattered around the room more. The people I sat with Thursday were on the opposite side of the theater on Friday. So we didn't have a nice little pack of freaks together to support each other. And you also need to know that although I have come a long way from the very shy kid that I was growing up, that kid never really goes away and in a dead crowd she will sometimes keep me off my feet when I would really rather be up and clapping. (Yes I know, I'm nuts.) But Friday night I had made a conscious decision to banish that shy kid, and I was going to stand up and dance even if I was the only one in the whole theater on my feet. (If you can call what I do dancing - don't forget I'm a middle-aged white chick. LOL) My only compromise was that I knew most of the crowd wasn't going to know the new songs so I was going to sit through those. (But it's so hard with some of them..... LOL) And I sat through I Feel Love because I was waiting for Donna to say "sing if you wanna sing...." because I figured once she said that, the audience would get that they are supposed to be rowdy. Not this crowd. They weren't moving for the new songs, the hits.... they probably wouldn't have moved if you set the theater on fire. In fact the people behind me were furious that I kept standing up. I was told at one point to buy the record and dance at home. Sitting here now I can think of a thousand comebacks that I could have said, but that night the only thing that popped into my head was one handy phrase that I will not repeat here and that I should not have said there. (In fact, I regretted it almost the second I said it.) But I kept standing when I wanted to - I just moved over to the aisle when I did. (Strangely enough, venue security didn't mind us blocking
the aisle - I guess it was because we didn't have any cameras. LOL) Better yet, a few more people in front of us started standing too. (Insert a big evil grin here.) Better still was one older gentleman from the center section who came to the aisle and was doing some really crazy dancing. He was hysterical! I ran into Mary after the show and she said that they were all trying so hard not to laugh on stage that they were missing some of their notes. I didn't hear any missed notes, but that may be because I was torn between the show onstage and the show in the aisle. LOL That guy had his own little fan club happening for awhile there! LOL God, I wish I had a video of him to show you all. He could be a YouTube star.
The show was a total blast and I would up going back to my hotel so pumped up that I spent another night not sleeping. LOL The next day it was back in the car for the 10 hour drive home. I came back with no sleep, 200 photos of the Falls, and a huge grin that hasn't left my face yet - despite having had to work the last 2 days. Summer Fever will do that to you. I hope they never find a cure. :-)
- Some Crazy Webmistress from Long Guyland ;-)