Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Diana Krall back on the block, tomorrow @ Orpheum Theater and on TV show

After two days dedicated to radio & TV programs, including an interview for the opening night of a new talk-show ("The O'Regan Files" on the Bravo! channel) as well as a complete TV special, Diana Krall performs tomorrow, May 13, the first of two concerts in Vancouver's Orpheum Theater, to complete the Canadian portion of her "Quiet Nights Tour".

884 Granville St.,
Vancouver, British Columbia V6Z 1K3
Tix prices:
Orchestra: CA $92.50 - CA $125.00
Lower Balcony: CA $79.50 - CA $92.50
Dress Circle: CA $92.50
Upper Balcony: CA $69.50 - CA $79.50
Diana Krall will proudly contribute $2 from the sale of each ticket to Heart and Stroke Foundation's The Heart Truth campaign, with special thanks to founding sponsor, Becel.

Setlist for tomorrow's concert:
I Love Being Here With You
Do it Again
Let's Fall in Love
Where or When
I've Grown Accustomed to His Face
'Deed I Do
Exactly Like You
A Case Of You
Devil May Care
Quiet Nights
Pick Yourself Up
Love Letters
'S Wonderful
Walk on By
I Don't Know Enough About You
The Look of Love
Originally opened on November 7, 1927 as a vaudeville house, the Orpheum was the largest and most opulent theatre on the Pacific Coast. The City of Vancouver purchased the theatre on March 19, 1974 and undertook a complete restoration of the theatre's interior. The Orpheum re-opened on April 2, 1977 as the permanent home of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and a restored concert hall that hosts a variety of pop, classical, choral and chamber recitals. It is also an ideal venue for concert recordings, conference sessions, seminars and film shoots.

Also tomorrow, "Bravo!" debuts a new original series that uncovers the full stories behind the artists. In "The O'Regan Files", premiering Wednesday, May 13 at 8:30 p.m. ET / 5:30 p.m. PT, journalist Seamus O’Regan conducts in-depth one-on-one conversations with arts luminaries and other prominent figures. Scheduled to follow Arts & Minds on "Bravo!," each episode explores various artists’ current projects, career ideas and inspirations. The half-hour series kicks-off with Diana, undoubtedly Canada’s most famous act in the current international jazz scene. She joins O’Regan to discuss her highly successful career, her new "Quiet Nights" CD and, of course, her current Canadian tour that ends this week.

Review published today in The Chronicle Herald about DK's previous concert, last Sunday, at the Halifax Metro Centre (Nova Scotia):

A lighthearted Krall mixes it up
Singer moves from mellow to fiery, messes with melodies
Tue. May 12 - 5:50 AM

Audiences at the Halifax Metro Centre aren’t used to quiet nights, whether it’s the eardrum threatening volume of an arena rock band or the shouts and taunts of a Halifax Mooseheads hockey game.

But the 3,500 people at jazz siren Diana Krall’s Quiet Nights Tour stop on Sunday night sat rapt for most of the evening as the B.C. singer-pianist, her trio and members of Symphony Nova Scotia presented a lush and mellow set of popular songs where, occasionally, you could listen in to the spaces between the notes and actually hear the building’s ventilation system whirring away.

Not that it was all mellow; Krall and her group kicked things off with a pell-mell I Love Being Here With You, flying along as Anthony Wilson played an agile solo on his retro-style Monteleone Radio Flyer guitar, turning the melody inside out while her longtime drummer Jeff Hamilton kept up the steady clip. Bassist Robert Hurst wore a grimace as his hands flew up and down the length of his instrument, while Krall took her solo with eyes half closed, lips pursed, sweeping the Steinway keys with her hands, tapping out musical Morse code and insistent chords.

Vibrato strings ushered in the seductive come-on of Do It Again. "You won’t regret, come and get it" purred Krall, casting subtlety to the wind as she played it against the beat creating a languid tension that was relieved by the leering sound of the flutes. Then, on an easygoing Let’s Fall in Love, muted trumpet stings accented the pianist’s artful messing with the melody, which also included a few snatches of the Hockey Night in Canada theme, apt for the venue.

"How are you doing? Happy Mother’s Day!" proclaimed Krall. "It’s always nice to be here in one of my favourite cities in Canada.

"My great-grandmother was born here, so I felt very much at home here, walking around in the fog and the rain today. Sunshine, unless I’m on holidays, just makes me feel anxious."

If any piece could soothe jangled nerves, it’s her Sinatra-inspired version of Rodgers and Hart’s Where or When, with a simple, atmospheric string arrangement conducted by Alan Broadbent. She sang it breathy, with an undercurrent of soul, while her solo sounded like raindrops tumbling on a grey afternoon spent summoning up old memories. She also opted for lush and lovely on a song by another great team, Lerner and Loewe’s I’ve Grown Accustomed to His Face, sung not so much with a sense of longing or melancholy, but rather an acceptance of the comfort of an enduring love that’s well past its first blush, with a warmth expressed by the French horns swelling underneath the strings.

"That song kind of reminds me of my husband, who flew back yesterday with our sons Dexter and Frank," said Krall, invoking her partner, singer-songwriter Elvis Costello. "I’ll try to bring them next time.

"I know it’s not Pump It Up or All Shook Up for that matter. Being on the East Coast, I’ve had a lot of oysters, so tomorrow night I’ll walk through the door in Vancouver and be like, ‘Heyyyy’ " she grinned, before catching herself and scolding, "These are very serious songs, so sober up!"

Krall maintained a lighthearted tone throughout the evening however, tossing a distracting pencil from her piano into the crowd, before calling out to make sure she hadn’t impaled anyone, and discussing her days playing piano in a Nanaimo sports bar, where she’d occasionally accompany the hockey games on the TV "like they were a silent movie."

Other highlights included tributes to Nat King Cole on ’Deed I Do and Exactly Like You, which mysteriously transformed briefly into Don’t Worry Be Happy, while a hushed, introspective I Should Care morphed more purposefully into a late night confessional take on Joni Mitchell’s A Case of You. Burt Bacharach’s Walk on By traded in drama for despair, as the bittersweet darkness of the strings matched the emotional defeat perfectly expressed by Krall’s take on Hal David’s lyrics.

Krall wrapped up the main body of the show with a fierce I Don’t Know Enough About You, featuring one of Wilson’s best solos of the evening played with rapid finesse, and the pianist stretching from kitten-on-the-keys stuff to a torrent of notes and a blast of Night Train for good measure. The hearty standing ovation that followed firmly kicked any notion of quiet out of the room.

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