MUSIC LIVE REVIEWS
As the cooling fans of Marco‘s turn. a chattering —- ifsomewhat mature— crowd of 300 stands not knowing what to expect of this Island Records showcase. First up is Angie Giles, who delivers an accomplished set of exhilarating soul/funk tunes, in what serves as an excellent warmer to the main acts of the evening.
I have come to see ifthe hype surrounding Don-E was worth the bother. He could have come to Edinburgh with a DAT and a couple ofdancers. but he has assembled a tightly organised ten-piece band. Displaying a maturity beyond his 22 years in what is his first-ever gig. he sounds like Stevie Wonder and bounces around the stage with the exuberance of Bobby Brown. As he rattles offa 45-minute set of slow ballady groovers and up-tempo funk numbers, a party develops on the stage, which gradually spreads towards the dancefloor. . . and as he skips offstage Edinburgh can feel privileged that it may well have witnessed the birth of a soul star.
Headlining act Ronny Jordan may not be to the jazz purist‘s ear but, like Miles Davis before him, he realises that jazz needs to move with the times, ie into the clubs. Certainly, the people here appreciate the quality funked-up guitar sound of Jordan and his quintet; a rather sumptuous version of Bob Marley‘s ‘Redemption Song‘ is rewarded with continued applause. When rapper Drew Nicholls joins him on stage, Marco’s comes alive to a wonderful freestyle jamming session. On the last of his three encores, Ronny shouts ‘Scotland the Brave‘, appreciating the now sweaty — but totally contented - crowd. Thank God for those cooling fans. (Philip Ogilvie)
V LIVE CHER
SECC, 1 May.
In hall five of the SECC, 1000 U2 disciples camp out overnight for tickets for the chaps’ summer show in Glasgow. In hall four, synchronicity ls well to the fore as Crystal Tipps descends from the heavens and launches into a shoulder-padded version of ‘I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For'. But instead of suspended Trabants there is suspended disbelief as Cher keeps her kiton. Initially. . .
Priorto this, telling us what we already knew, Cher’s televisual cv flickered before us, imageing her transmutations from dippy hippy to feisty TV queen to reinvented Hollywood empress to remoulded big-wig rawk-er. This far down her evolutionary scale Cher has, in true Darwinian style, shed any extraneous characteristics- husbands, clothes, body parts-which might hamper this survival of the fittest. Now, of course, she is a larger-than-llte character with a neat line in smaller-than-amoeba
, songs. Except ‘The Shoop Shoop
3 Soto fill in this big zero in the song
A department we get rippling dancers
| and hyperactive brat backing singers
I and thunderous instrumentals ripped
from bad episodes of ‘Miami Vice’.
i Cher, meanwhile, slips into something a little more uncomfortable. One
% serious application of the lmmac later
i she re-emerges, wearing a leather jacket, a pair ofthigh-high boots, and
3 two extra-long shoelaces to cover her
i nooks and crannies.
‘We All Sleep Alone’, ‘I Found
Someone’, ‘Love And Understanding’,
‘Save Up All YourTears’ -those
i slushmush epics, that imperious boom
2 of a voice, those alfresco buttocks
i exuding a ring of confidence and
i bare-faced cheek (or is that
1 bare-checked face?) Then she does
I the peerless ‘Just Like Jesse James’.
; The male half of the audience - bar moi
- make like Sid James and cackles lecherously. Never in the field oi modern rock opera have talent and testosterones been so successfully tangled. (Craig McLean)
llmﬂﬂilllll DON GIOVANNI
Theatre Royal, Glasgow, 25 May. Scottish Opera’s new production of Mozart’s Don Giovanni is the company’s third since 1985- and, judging by the audience response on opening night, this one seems at last to have hit the jackpot.
The best thing about this new version is the production itself. Director and
designerTom Calms’ slick, modern set ;
makes stunning use of space and colour in its long, clean lines and subtle sexual symbolism. Vivid purples, reds and blues, infused with Ian Somerville’s fabulous lighting, combine to make this one of the most
visually stimulating productions currently on the Scottish stage.
Highlights include Don Giovanni's ' initial entry onto the stage via a bright red circle during the Donna Anna rape scene and his final (literally) fiery damnation at the hand of her dead father. The stage floor is raised throughout, leaving enough space underneath for us to see this musical Don Juan scuttle around like the low-life rat he really is.
Musically, it’s also pretty colourful. Steven Page’s Don is domineering, dark-voiced and very, very dry, effectively tolling Glen Winslade’s honeyed Don Ottavlo. Linda McLeod’s Donna Anna, Virginia Kerr's Donna Elvira and Rosemary Joshua’s Zerlina all sounded light intone on opening night, though collectively they convey the pain of the Don’s selfish destruction.
But the revelation of the evening came from Gidon Saks’ Leporello. Helped along by Helen Cooper’s blunt English translation and some spirited playing from the orchestra under ; Robert Dean, he runs through the entire
gamut of emotions, from naive sexual
jealousy to petritying fear, with such vocal versatility and witty stage presence that he very nearly steals the i SIIOW. '. ldon’t think this one's there for the | taking. (Cate Devine)
V BOOK NOW
Concerts listed are those at majorvenues, for which tickets are on public sale at time of going of press.
I GLASGOW BARROWLAND (226 4679) Shakespear‘s Sister. 26 May; Rollins Band and Beastie Boys. 17Jun; Buddy Guy. 1 Jul; Crowded House. 10Jul; Fishbone, 22 Jul.
I GLASGOW CELTIC PARK (227 551 1) Prince. 28Jun: Bryan Adams. 1 1 Jul.
I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 5511)Joan
Four Tops. 14 Sept.
I GLASGOW GREEN (031 557 6969) Fleadh. 24 May; Michael Jackson. 14 Aug. I GLASGOW SECC (031 557 6969) Diana Ross. 10 Jun: Roxettc. l8JuI; Def Leppard, 21 Jun; Cliff Richard. 29L31 OctzTom Jones, 2 Nov.
I EDINBURGH PLAYHOUSE (557 2590) Martika, 23 May; Lyle Lovett. 14Jun:
Crowded House. 19Jun:
Erasure, 7 Jul; David Byrne, 21 Jul; FourTops, 12 Sept.
I EDINBURGH QUEEN’S HALL(668 2019) Frankie
; Miller. 27 May; Richard
I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) Cowboy Junkies, 26 Jun; Barbara Dickson, 27Jun.
a JAZZ and FOLK
IGLASGOW CONCERT HALL(2275511)Syd
Lawrence Orchestra. 22 5 May.
I EDINBURGH OUEEN'S HALL (668 2019) Bheki MselekuTrio, 22 May; Ruby Braff, 29 May.
I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) Katia
; Labeque and John f McLaughlin Trio,20]un.
I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 5511) Michael Ball. 25 May.
I GLASGOW SECC (031 557 6969) Shirley Bassey. 2 Dec.
I EDINBURGH PLAYHOUSE (557 2590) Music of Andrew Lond-Webber. 13—15 Jul; James Last,4—5 Sept.
I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 5511) Philharmonic of Novosibirsk. 23 May: RSO Scottish Proms, 12—13.16—20.23—27Jun.
' I cuscow nsmo (332
5057) Brodsky Quartet. 23 May.
I EDINBURGH DUEEN'S HALL (668 2019) Jubilo, 24 May; Edin Light Orch.6 Jun; Kevock Choir, 7Jun; Aldeburgh Connection, 9 Jun; Rekonstruktsiya Trust. 13 Jun; Meadows CO, 14 Jun; Schools
Jun; Stockbridge House Recital. 21 Jun; Come and Sing, 28Jun; BF of Young
: Choirs, 11 Jul; McGibbon 5 Ensemble,3lJul.
I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) R50 Scottish Proms. 22—23, 28, 30 May, 5—6Jun; SCO/Rattlc,16Jun.
ISUBSCRIPTIDN f SEASONSProgramme
details and tickets for Royal Scottish Orchestra. Scottish Chamber Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and City ofGIasgow
are available from Ticketccntrc, Glasgow (227 5511); Usheriiall.
; Queen‘s i-lall. Edinburgh } (6682019).Ticketsfor
2 Theatre Royal, Glasgow ; (332 9000); Playhouse,
Edinburgh (557 2590).
40 The List 8— 21 May 1992