After hearing that my favorite composer/musician would be touring, I lined up several trips in order to attend a few “Yanni In Concert” performances in Canada and the U.S. Little did I know that I would actually end up meeting the man that I had admired so much. My first concert was at the Toronto Sony Centre and my best friend of 30 years accompanied me. It meant an 8 hour ride with plenty of time to talk, laugh, re-connect and escape our hectic lives. She was definitely the right person to kick off my 5 concert experience with. That evening we met up with a few Yanni fans at a pre-show get together at the Sony Centre’s bar. I’m not sure who first invented these get togethers, but kudos to them. The ability to connect with people who are as passionate about Yanni’s music as I am was an experience in itself. We were all excited about the show which did not disappoint. I’ve loved Yanni’s music for the past 20 years so I was happy to see that the set list encompassed songs from his entire career including “Voyage” from his most recent album “Truth of Touch”.
During the show, Yanni spent some time lively interacting with his musicians and vocalists, connecting with the audience and spoke of inspiration and a world where there would be peace & dignity for all. From Santorini to One Man’s Dream and everything in between, Yanni and his world class musicians and singers had the audience enthusiastically applauding and standing on their feet by the end.
At the second show in Toronto I was treated to a backstage tour before the concert. The tour, lead by Yanni’s production mgr. and lovely PR person, gave me a greater appreciation for the amount of work required to put on these technically challenging shows and also allowed for some impromptu meetings with some of the talented musicians and people involved in the show’s production. It was at this show that I also met both Yanni and Ric Wake. Thanks to PR for taking a great photo of Yanni & me. For the record, I’d like to say to Yanni, “Thank you for taking the time to exchange greetings and a few words with me. It was truly a pleasure.” (And worth being interrogated by U.S. border patrol.) Did I mention that I inadvertently grabbed my expired passport? Thankfully Canada’s border patrol failed to notice this on the way into the country, but the U.S. border patrol picked up on it and pulled us aside when we tried to re-enter the U.S. (Insert my mortified, grim face here) Not only were we subject to questioning but we also endured some good humored teasing about the reason for our visit to Canada. LOL…I’m sure my best friend will never let me “live this down”.
In Atlantic City, I attended another pre-show get together at The Borgata with some wonderful Yanni fans. The New Jersey crowd was enthusiastic and welcoming and the crowd got a good laugh when Yanni commented on the undies that were tossed up on stage. (And just in case you’re wondering, no, they did not belong to me)
In New York City, Radio City Hall proved to be a fantastic venue to watch this concert. There is something truly magical about this place. Once again, Yanni and his musicians gave 100 percent plus effort in putting on an amazing show. After the show ended, Charlie Adams, the drummer for the show, came out to greet the fans & I got a great pic with him. I saw him do this after every show and the fans loved it!
Finally, in Orlando I attended one more pre-show party with Yanni fans including a couple of great moderators from the Yanni Message Board. Many thanks to Yanni and YanniWake PR for donating some great gifts to a couple of lucky winners in our crowd. We also had the pleasure of meeting Yanni’s manager that evening, who stopped by to say hello to all of us. I think he’s right on track bringing this show to the many fans around the world.
Orlando was probably the smallest of venues I attended, and also the most emotionally charged for me. There were certain events leading up to and including this evening in which “the world wanted me to go left and I felt like going right.” Not always easy to do, but sometimes you just have to do what feels right for you. I knew it would be my last show for this tour and I simply wanted to savor every song played and enjoy the music that had delighted me for so long. It was a memorable night. And so on April 20th, 2011, my Yanni concert trip line had reached its end point. Along the way I met some wonderful people, created great memories and I made my way back to my hotel that night knowing that I had witnessed something great.
In the past couple of years I’ve become acquainted with many Yanni fans and the Yanni team via social networks and I am grateful for their friendship, their comments and photographs of concert experiences and stories of inspiration that they have generously shared with me. You have inspired me as well. I look forward to seeing Yanni and everyone else at the concerts in the future!
Title: Yanni Concert Tour