The first night with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra was by far the most amazing thing I had ever heard or seen. Mika did a magnificent performance, his voice was in a perfect shape. I still can’t decide if I should be angry at him for doing other things instead of performances like this for two years or if I should be grateful that he was doing other things and became motivated enough to do a performance like this now. I guess I choose the latter one.
The symphony orchestra concept is a dream come true for a fan but also much more I knew to expect in advance. New arrangements for old songs made them all new and fresh experiences and we heard even three new songs (Last Party, Ordinary Man, Good Guys) from the fourth album. The evening felt like a live version of album pre-listening event. Such a privilege to be there.
The orchestra itself was a mind-blowing experience especially to someone who is not used to hear live orchestra concerts. It was huge and made Mika look tiny on stage. However, he handled his role so well. I wish we could hear him with an orchestra more often, his songs deserve to be performed this way, it’s like giving every song performed an extra honor. I assume Simon Leclerc is the person to thank for the arrangements, loved watching him and Mika on stage, their chemistry seemed to work well.
I can’t even try to list every magical moment, the concert was pure firework from the beginning to the end. I’m still slightly in a shock and physically exhausted after being nervous for hours before the show. Mika must have been nervous as well but we really couldn’t hear it, just saw how he breathed relieved between some songs. He was smiling a lot and surely a bit touched while watching how much people loved him.
He started with Toy Boy (always a lovely treat) and continued with Underwater which felt an obvious choice with an orchestra and was as beautiful as I had expected. I can’t remember the exact order for the songs but the first of the new songs was called The Last Party and was my favorite of the new songs. The lyrics are dramatic and tragic and I wonder if the album version will be a party song with black lyrics (very much his style) or something else.
He performed almost equally many songs from LICM (AOW, GK, OMS, HE, Relax, LT) and TOOL (UW, Karen, Overrated, Heroes, Drunk, MYH, Origin, EMD) and just a couple of songs from TBWKTM (Toy Boy, Rain). Overrated was definitely the biggest highlight and Heroes outstanding and so suitable to be performed this way. Boum Boum Boum and Drunk were lighter and funnier in the middle of some serious songs and Happy Ending probably his best ever performance (the audience rewarded it with a deserved standing ovation). My personal favorite was Relax. Surprised and happy that it was kept so gentle.
I wish I could share photos or videos but both were officially forbidden by the venue and didn’t want the security to disturb the concert and kept my camera in my bag. It was lovely to meet so many other fans. Looking forward to the second concert and a big MFC party before the gig. Definitely going to blog about the party and give quick comments about the the second and third concert but will probably leave proper reports to write them when rested and thought everything through.