The second Mika “pigiama party” was organized in Bergamo last night and even I have only a few pics to share I still wanted to write a small report to describe how my experience was. First of all it was good to see everyone again! Thank you so much for everything, I had already missed your familiar faces! I had looked forward to meeting also Lucrezia who has been kind and helpful and translated me all kind of Italian material I couldn’t otherwise understand but she wasn’t feeling well last night so we need to reschedule our meeting next time I’m in Italy. So sorry you couldn’t be there, sweetie, I hope to see you very soon!
The event (filming a few clips for the upcoming Casa Mika show) was at Piazza Vecchia, the pretty old part of Bergamo. It was very wet and cold (it was raining the whole day), the event wasn’t as much a ”pajama party” as the event in Aosta night before but more like a ”singing In The Rain” group action but Mika was super sweet and it was interesting for me to see how the filming is done and it was all totally worth both traveling and waiting in the rain.
I’m trying to shortly describe what happened starting from gathering together at the piazza. Okay, I’m an extremely awkward person when it comes to being in a group or in front of cameras or people. In guided group activities I’m definitely too slow or going to the wrong direction. In pictures I’m the one eyes closed and mouth open and in front of Mika I certainly say the most random and unplanned things. I shouldn’t be near cameras during recordings and I know that but somehow always forget it and ignore my common sense and do these things again and again. I guess I’m optimistic and for Mika I’m willing to go through even awkward situations.
This time I hadn’t seen him since the summer and had missed him. He was kind and sweet and just seeing him there made me feel better. The weather forecast told it will rain the whole day and I was worried the production would cancel the event. The buildings around the piazza offered some roof though and it was possible to place cameras/lights and the bed under the roof. There was no space for the crowd so we all stood in the rain during the event. For me this was obviously still the best option, my flight was leaving early morning and I couldn’t have rescheduled my participation and was happy to see the party and recording even it was raining.
We gathered at the piazza late afternoon and got instructions at half past six but waited a few hours while the team was preparing the set. We had been told to wear colorful pajamas but most people were actually wearing animal costumes and other silly outfits. I had my striped pajamas and felt surprisingly comfortable wearing it in a public place as for me that was the least awkward part of the whole situation. I had gotten the email telling about ”colorful, unique pajamas” the moment I was leaving at the airport and all I could do that time was to add a giant soft Moomin toy and a very colorful umbrella to my outfit. I bought both at the airport and looked a little bit like a travel ad but couldn’t help that and noticed later that the toy definitely got Mika’s attention when he saw it.
We were organized and we practiced dancing with our umbrellas until nine or ten PM. Then Mika finally came, looked smiling and talked to the audience. He did a small speech to honor Dario Fo and just before it saw me with my Moomin and smiled (and commented something in Italian). He must have been surprised to see people coming from far away just to see a filming. After that we started recording the clip of Mika dancing in the middle of the audience and did the same part several times because the crowd didn’t give him enough space and the team had to eventually organize us again.
The lady from the production was determined to push me as far away as possible but Mika started to walk around and saw me and came to talk to me so there I was in front of the camera again. I didn’t first realize they were filming (I thought he was having his tea break!) and generally had no idea what he said in Italian so I’m afraid that was embarrassing from my part but he was super sweet coming to say hello of course and it was lovely to see him there and made me very happy. He did his dance a few more times and said good bye to people after that but still continued filming his own part and we were allowed to stay and watch until it was done and he waved and left.
The whole night was very wet and cold and most of us probably caught a cold. Mika was wearing a dark blue pajamas with white clouds on it and had a blanket or hoodie on his shoulders while having breaks. The audience wasn’t following the instructions all the time (and some people were quite excited about him in general) so the recording was a lot of work for the production team. I hope my face won’t show in the final clip but if it does it will definitely be a good lesson for me to stay a little bit further away from cameras in the future, lol!
I know many fans wouldn’t bother to travel only to spend time in the rain but it was definitely a good and interesting experience for me who appreciates seeing everything first hand and as this is the first own television show for Mika it feels that way important as well. A few pics of the area and fans above, the one with the moomin is me (we were allowed to use mobiles between recordings but it was raining and I had my hands full with my umbrella so this time no pics of Mika, sorry!). xxx
Some songs feel important the moment I hear them for the first time, some other songs ask me to be more patient. Songs working on two levels are easy, I can relate them immediately but also find deeper meanings during time. If I can’t relate the theme personally it takes time to truly discover the song. I have the feeling there’s something to catch but that something is like slipping away and I have to remind myself to be patient. Finally discovering that important vibe is always rewarding.
Good Guys is one of those songs. I couldn’t relate to the lyrics, I’ve never had that kind of examples in my own life and I knew I have to see the song from Mika’s point of view and it took me time even of course I could understand how important all those brave, bold, genuine artistic examples (which he calls “good guys”) must have been for him when he was a creative young person planning to be an artist. First it sounded he didn’t believe in those examples anymore, that he had become too old to believe in any heroes.
Then I thought that maybe the good guys still existed but the focus point had changed when he grew up and became an example to younger people himself. What made the song alive for me was hearing people talking about the meaning of this song and the importance of his example to their personal lives and I started to see the meaning of the song in reality. I wanted the live version to be soft and dreamy – to transfer me to the atmosphere of the past years – and it did happen even I can’t be sure if there was that kind of evolving in the live version for real or if it happened in my own imagination only.
Another challenging song was definitely Ordinary Man. In the beginning it was performed old-fashioned, musical style and instead of the vulnerability that was meant to be there I saw only some very theatrical self-pity and couldn’t understand why he had made a song like that. I couldn’t get it. I knew there must be another purpose for the song but I really couldn’t catch it.
I remember the exact moment in the end of the show in Cattolica where Mika, after giving almost his everything during the show, breathed a moment, put on a too small hand-decorated t-shirt given from the audience, sat down in front of his piano and did an amazing simple version of Ordinary Man, sounding wonderful, looking sweaty and exhausted, and I finally got the song and realized THIS is how it was meant to be, this is the vulnerability meant to be in the song. What an ending to that concert it was, just brilliant, will never forget that. Some songs are so personal they are best performed (figuratively speaking) naked, being a little bit uncomfortable, having no possibility to hide.
Some songs, on the other hand, work best in special circumstances or settings. Heroes is one of these songs. The theme is so big the song was difficult to even understand before it was done in a huge way with a giant symphony orchestra. I knew to expect it would be a good way to perform it but it turned out to be more impressive than I ever imagined, the song felt like a force of nature. That time it worked in a big way, most times I dream of hearing songs in a small way and assume Beautiful Disaster could be amazingly beautiful done in a simple, acoustic way instead of the dance style we usually hear.
Sometimes I ignore songs myself because I can’t handle them. I never listen to All That She Wants. The theme is simply too sad for me. For some reason even the cheerful melody gives a little bit fake cheerful feeling if that makes any sense. The collage above is for Good Guys, hopefully that was clear without saying. Don’t come after me if the quotes are not totally correct, I just liked the idea and picked my favorites. Maybe Mika will soon finish his journals he is writing and we can travel with that and always have something sensational to read. Take care xxx