Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Rufus Wainwright

I was filling in last minute for J., who couldn’t make it. J. called me with the meeting-up details and I said, “I don’t really know much about Rufus Wainwright.”
“Wow,” he said, “You’re really jumping in with both feet.”

He was right.

I met the three ladies at a local pub, Dora Keogh. They were all wearing scarves with stars and sparkly brooches. “It’s a Rufus thing,” C. said. One of the girls came all the way from Manhattan, the other from London, UK, just to see Rufus.
“How many of his concerts have you been to?” I asked C..
“Fifteen or so?” She replied, “Not as many as the others.” In fact, they’d seen the show the night before and were following Rufus to Montreal where he's playing later in the week.

We made our way into the Danforth Music Hall and found our seats. "L. gets far left,” C. instructed. There was a plan, a Rufus viewing seating arrangement. It left me in the far right seat, front row centre. I know. Wow. I looked around me. Stars and sparklies everywhere.

The band emerged in blindingly striped suites and sparkling brooches. Then came Rufus, taller and slimmer than I’d imagined. When he started to sing I realized I’d heard his voice all over the place. “Oh that guy!”

Happy songs, sad songs, songs that made me want to bounce off the walls. I developed a crush on the trumpeter. I must have a thing for guys with pork pie hats and good lips.

At intermission, my Rufus friends buzzed about the intricate differences in the show, and lamented the couple behind us who wouldn’t shut up during the songs. When the lights dimmed and the first song of the set faded, J. turned around and said in her Liverpudlian accent, “Look, I’ve come all the way from London to see this concert. Please stop talking.” They did.
“Toronto people can be rude at concerts, I’ve noticed,” C. said. At movies, too, I thought, remembering the turn-and-glare maneuver Trevor has refined over the years.

The encore was something else. I can’t do it justice, only to say that I’m jealous that Rufus can pull off a pair of seamed stockings and heels better than I ever will. I also feel for the band who had to dance their balls off in the now hot, humid, stale air of the Music Hall.

As the lights came up, my Rufus friends dashed to the stage (not difficult since it was two feet away) and still just barely snagged a set list. They were going to wait outside the stage door for Rufus. C. once got to give Rufus a brooch, sparkling in two shades of pink, and he wore it the next night on stage.

I hugged them, wished them luck in Montreal, and walked home through the silent streets of Riverdale, still vibrating from the last big number.

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Blogger Jacqueline ~ 6:25 AM

I don't know from Rufus.

But I'm hearing sparkle and high heels, so it's got to be good.  

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