I have wanted to see John Barrowman for years. For a few years I couldn’t manage to get tickets (as he plays in more intimate venues); then I got tickets last year and was too ill to go; so this year I bought tickets again and am so glad I did.
I went with my good friend Simon. Here’s some photos (click on any for full size):
Then we headed down to The Bridgewater Hall, Manchester for the gig. On our arrival immediately we saw that we where in the right place. We saw a guy wearing a Torchwood trench coat (ironically wearing jeans and a t-shirt underneath with trainers as footwear) and several people proudly showing-off their 2011 tour t-shirts. The crowd were mostly OAP’s, grannies with curled white hair and granddads with either no hair or comb-overs. In the crowd were also stocky balled men taking their relatively tiny mothers and the occasional middle age short tubby gay couples (often with one hair so neat that it must have been a wig). The rest of the crowd were made up of stereotypical-looking housewives. It did wonders for my self-esteem as I think I was the youngest one there.
As we took our seats in the auditorium (which had a good acoustics) we saw a young cool-looking gay couple in the row in front of us. It was nice to see a happy looking gay couple among the crowd and they made me laugh we they bopped their heads trying to look cool when John sang. The show started with a bang:
Then the J4’s (John’s four dancers and backing singers) got to do a song :
Then it was time for Jody Prenger to sing. After her first song she had a chat with the audience. I couldn’t believe that someone which such broad northern accent could produce such fantastic vocals.
Throughout the show John told stories about himself, his family and his partner (Scott) inbetween tracks. John also used the opportunity to shamelessly promote other buisness ventures including his skin care range HIM, his music (The Very Best of John Barrowman (CD), Music Music Music, Another Side), his books (Anything Goes & I am What I am) and his DVD’s (John Barrowman Collectors Edition [DVD], John Barrowman Live At The Royal Albert Hall [DVD], An Evening With John Barrowman [DVD]). But we (the audience) didn’t mind as he’d won us over as soon as he’d come stage being his camp and lovely self. Plus he wiggled his arse rather expertly at the audience pretty early on!
Simon and I agreed that John’s vocals had vastly improved from previous years. My opinion came from his previous DVD’s I had seen and Simon’s opinion came from his experience watching him last year. Well done John! I did notice at points that he appeared out of breath with the dancing and singing, but as an all round entertainer he delivered an excellent performance. I didn’t realise that he’s forty-five years old this year, he looks really good for his age.
It was time for the interval and after a quick leg stretch Simon and I returned to our seats. The screen at the back of the stage was showing photos and I caught this one while playing with my iPhone 4 camera:
The second part of the show began with John doing a few tracks before introducing his parents. His father dressed as a construction worker and his mother dressed as a police woman to which they did YMCA! Photo’s below:
Then John and Jody did a duet entitled So Close:
Then John did a holiday songs remix with the J4’s. The two scrumptious male dancers ended up wearing practically nothing apart from some blue swimwear which was fantastic. After the song the male J4’s bent down to pick up some props from the back of the stage showing their perk arses to the audience. John jokingly told them off for “milking” it but we (the audience) didn’t mind:
Then John performed a few slow songs before changing into a fab sparkly suit for his finale I am what I am:
Throughout the show John made good eye contact with the auidence and pointed at certain people in the auidence to make them feel special – an old entertainer trick that works. At one point in the first half John asked if there were any gay people in the audience and Simon and I whooped! John made eye contact, smiled and waved. Alas he didn’t see me, fall in love, take me on stage and get down on one knee – but hey you can’t have everything.
I throughly enjoyed the show, so thank you John Barrowman.