Entrance to Esplanade Theatre
View of the stage from the sound & light desk.
I had to say "hi" to Sam, Luke, Wan & Ben
and thank them for their hard work, too.
View of audience. Very good crowd!
Tonight was amazing! Let me start out by saying that I hate change. It's so much easier to get settled down and comfortable with what you know and like. Things are going along perfectly well. Why mess them up? But sometimes change is necessary. And tonight shows us why change is not just OK, it can reveal new and exciting things that you didn't expect! So many really great surprises! So let's revel in them together. Really wish you were here, Lexi.
The program started with Cassius' voice instructing people to turn off their cell phones and that there's no filming or photography allowed.
1. Jubilate - Similar to past concerts with only 6 boys on stage with dim lighting. They were Eoghan, Ralph, Kavana, Matthew J, Matthew R-A and Dylan. Then Cassius and Barney came out to the center and sang together. They sounded really good. This then morphed into...
2. Libera - Eoghan and Luke had the solos on this. Luke's voice is still quite high! I realized when they lined up how small everyone looks. The big boys are kind of medium-sized now, and the little ones are really little. It's much more like a treble boys choir again.
Speech - Cassius & Barney welcoming everyone & introducing Libera. The audience was very responsive and laughed at all the cute things the boys say.
3. Song of Life - Oh, boy. Would Ralph still be singing this? Would it sound the same if someone else sang it? Then there was Ralph in the center with Dylan and Matthew J singing with him for parts! It was so good!
4. Sanctissima - Ralph soloed on this one also and another great job. I still can't believe that he gets nervous when he sings. You'd never know it. He just looks happy and serene.
5. Sanctus - Excellent! Luke sang the last Sanctus.
Speech - Cassius & Michael introducing Moose, their mascot. Very cute talking about how Moose goes to all the rehearsals and has been in the choir longer than anyone else on stage. :D
6. I Vow To Thee My Country - Reason #1 why change is good. Matthew Jansen soloed and oh my word is he awesome!!! So clear and controlled and high! Really a wow! Lexi and I had noticed his voice at the Houston 2011 concert. He was standing in front of us and we could hear his voice without a mic. We could tell then that he has a beautiful voice. Wait til you hear it, Japan and Arundel! He was accompanied in parts by Dylan and Tom! More happy surprises!
7. Eternal Light - Solo by Stefan with Ralph. Stefan's voice is just spectacular! And he and Ralph just sound so good together, don't they? Robert Prizeman knows how to pair them up! Others in the audience can say what they want, this was my favorite performance of Eternal Light so far. Just really, really great!
8. Salva - Matthew R-A is still hitting those stellar high notes! Love him! I wrote at intermission that he was "perfect." :) There was a large screen behind the boys and during this song it showed the video of boys in robes walking around. We've seen the video before, but it was just very cool with this song.
Speech - Jude introduced the instrumentalists. Simon is back on percussion; Steven on recorder, clarinet and keyboard; the string quartet; and Robert on piano and keyboard. That Jude is a funny kid.
9. Do Not Stand At My Grave and Weep - Solo by Ralph with Stefan. Again they were great together. I found myself smiling during the song then realized that might not be appropriate given the title. Actually, I smiled nearly the whole concert.
10. Exultate - Wow! So good! They did the moving forwards with the beat. And Luke had the high notes.
Interval - when this comes my thought is always, "Already?" :)
11. Orinoco Flow - OK, who cries at this song? Me! I was so thrilled to get to hear this song live, that during the first few measures I was tearing up. lol But what a happy song. It sounded so good! The choreography was so cool! The boys would turn to face opposite sides like soldiers in a parade, quick and sharp. Then at other parts they'd flow and glide to the center and the back row would come forward much like on the "When Will I Be Famous" version. Ah, I'm so happy now! :D
12. Gloria - Matthew R-A sang the high part. A very moving song!
Speech - Cassius & Barney about their white robes, trying not to spill orange juice on them (what, no Orange Squash in Singapore? hehe), and how big the hoods are. Again the audience loved it, and that Cassius is so funny.
13. The Fountain - Solo by Ralph. Just perfect, and oh my, that boy can still sing so crazy high! o_O
14. Dies Irae - This song was sung 13 years ago by Steven Geraghty on the Libera album. But here comes reason #2 why change is great. His name is Ciaran Bradbury-Hickey! He sang the solo with Matthew R-A backing. He was so calm, and his voice is so clear and high! What a treat! Can't wait to hear him again tomorrow. And a shout out to Simon on the drums!
15. Grateful Heart - Solo by Stefan. It's a new song! And who better to solo than Stefan? This actually is a difficult song to sing well. The notes go from very high to low, and Stefan showed such excellent voice control. Every note was spot-on perfect. Great job, Stefan! Loved this so much!
16. Stay With Me - Cassius with Dylan & Barney. We're all used to Daniel singing this, but these boys did a great job! Cassius sang parts of it by himself. He has a really great voice, too! This choir is just loaded with talent!
Speech - Little Ben Fairman has the cutest little voice to go with his cute little self. :D He told us why he's called Nano Ben and explained about the big boys helping the little boys learn.
17. Ave Verum - The boys had their hoods up, and the lights were a purple-pink. Matthew J, Henry, Barney & Ciarnan were in the middle with Matthew R-A on the high notes. Shout out to Kavana, Carlos and whoever else is singing the low notes! This sounded REALLY good! Nice and strong! They did the "V" at the end, and Ralph is the tallest! Stefan and Carlos were on either side. It's not as impressive (almost intimidating) as Josh towering over you in the middle there, but it still looked good because the little ones are SO little. hehe
18. Far Away - Solo by Isaac with Ciaran harmonizing on a few parts. Gigantic reason #3 why change is good! His name is Isaac London! I was just blown away by his voice. I hate to compare, but this was Tom Cully's song. Isaac gave us a stunning performance! This kid doesn't even need a mic. You can hear his voice shining out in other songs, too. He has great stage presence, charisma really. And he's only 9. Now who does that remind you of? Hope we get to hear more from him. He has a great future in front of him!
19. Glory To Thee - Solo Eoghan with Stefan harmonizing. Well, if you read this blog, you know how we feel about Eoghan's voice. Crystal clear and strong. Just stunningly perfect! And he still has that cute smile. :D There used to be 7 sections of boys to sing the round part. Now there are 5, so they go around about 1 1/2 times. :)
Speech - Michael thanked everyone for coming. He has the best speaking voice and diction!
20. How Shall I Sing That Majesty? - Solos by Eoghan and Stefan. Ah, one of my favorite songs. This was just beautiful. Yes, I miss Jakob. But it was still really great.
Encore - Exultate
Standing ovation! Thanks so much for a great concert, guys!
So a few other observations. Ciaran is pronounced "Keer-un." Did everyone remember that? The four newbies, Oscar, Michael, Adrian and Lucas seemed really comfortable up on stage. You could tell they had practiced a lot. Since I sat more to the left, I noticed Adrian, and he was smiling the whole time! I like it when they look like they're enjoying themselves up there. :D
Now on to the M&G. The line was very long, but I walked up to the front of the line to talk to the fans. The first 5 in line were teenage girls from a local school. Their choir teacher had gotten them the tickets. I asked them who their favorite boy is. One girl squealed and said, "We were way in the back, so I couldn't see very well, but the second tallest!" Well, that would be either Stefan or Carlos, so I asked, "Light hair or dark hair." She said, "Blonde!" I told here that would be Stefan, and he's the first one she's going to meet! More squeals and giggles. XD
Other fans said they heard about the concert on the internet and from banners hanging up.
I didn't take a lot of pictures. I took video instead. You'll have to wait until I get my act together and upload it to YouTube to see it. They were all so cute! I was happy to see that Jonathan Barrington was there working on stage crew with Simon Lewis.
Coming in to the M&G
Stefan, Matthew Madine, Luke, Kavana, Michael Menezes,
Carlos, Ralph, Eoghan, Oscar, Dylan, Barney, Jude, Kuba,
Ciaran, Matthew R-A, Lucas, Matthew J, Henry, Isaac,
Adrian, Michael U-R, Ben & Tom
Cover of the beautiful programs