Gig reviews: Mika @ Arena della Regina in Cattolica, Italy 7/2015
Only a written report about the show in Cattolica. Gutted I don’t have any photos or videos to share. There were so many things I wanted to film and save: several new songs and generally an amazing show on every level, a lot of funny details happening on stage, a new outfit, balloons, confetti and the colorful audience with toys and posters. Unfortunately both my camera and mobile stopped working in the beginning of the concert and couldn’t believe it happened on a night like that but of course also couldn’t help it so just put all my focus on watching the show and what a show it was!
Wow. Just wow.
A wonderful treat to everyone at the venue. A new set list, several new songs, several older songs we haven’t heard much lately, a huge level of energy, relaxed, happy and confident looking Mika and the Italian audience at its best. A fantastic concert that made me totally forget how hard the day and especially getting in to the venue was.
It felt hard. I had traveled 15 hours to be in Taormina and another 12 hours to be in Cattolica with very little sleep and the weather was hot and tiring. The atmosphere between the fans was very, very good though and everyone was chatting and really nice to each other and I loved meeting long-time fans I hadn’t met for a long time and new fans I didn’t know before Cattolica.
Things became really hard only when it was time to get in and some people coming last minute decided to push themselves front at the gates. The situation was actually quite dangerous but I really wanted to see the show well so I tried to keep my spot doing my best to keep a young fan next to me safe. She was obviously scared and cried and I used all my strength to prevent the crowd squeezing us from my side other fans protecting her from the other side.
I can usually keep my spot quite easily but this time I almost wasn’t physically strong enough and I felt exhausted when I finally got inside the gates. I couldn’t help thinking that maybe I shouldn’t do things hard way. I’m lucky to be able to travel to many different countries so I could choose more relaxed areas to see concerts. It’s just that the people I meet in Italy (and met also this time) are incredibly friendly and fun company and the Italian audience is so loud and supportive that just seeing happy smile on Mika’s face makes it worth it and me happy as well. Pushy crowded situations are an unavoidable part of the experience.
The security was actually extremely nice and told that they would love to see people organized but that they don’t have any official authority or resources to control how people behave outside the gates and that all they can do is talk to them and they did talk to them asking to do the right thing, not to hurt anyone and respect people who peacefully waited the gates to be opened. Of course no one listened to them but at least it made me and probably the others as well in a better mood. At least someone paid attention to what happened and stopped people pushing inside the venue area.
Everything went well in the end. I didn’t see anyone getting hurt except a few people crying and most fans I know got a good spot and I was located on the left side in front and had a great view to the stage. From the left I could easily see Max and Joy and was so happy to see Max back doing his funny dance movements and Joy being totally on fire. Really like it that I can hear them both singing! I could also easily see Mika in the middle of the stage and would have of course loved to take a few photos of his new outfit or funny toys people threw on stage.
The show was fantastic and I don’t know where to even start describing it. He opened with WAG and continued with GK, both good in his usual way but a little bit of nervousness in the air. Then Talk About You with a lot of funny toys coming on stage and Mika teasing Max with them and posing with the toys. Then Blue Eyes and suddenly I was totally blown away by the show! It was everything I want from concerts. I want everything else to disappear and I want to feel how the music fills my mind so there’s absolutely no space for a single disturbing thought and all this happened in a massive way once again.
I remembered – once again -how much I love watching Mika on stage. When everything goes well he looks like he can rule the whole world and magically do whatever he wants and it’s brilliant to watch and makes me always forget everything else. In smaller concerts he can show his voice better/go deeper in every song but in front of big audiences the most fascinating thing is to see the huge crowd totally under his spell and it’s almost as good as listening to his singing.
The show went on quickly and suddenly he was doing Staring At The Sun and took me a while to realize it’s probably the first time I hear it live? The live version is so much better than the album version. As the biggest surprise he started Promiseland and people in front went wild and screamed their excitement and I couldn’t believe he is finally doing it and I loved the performance and now hope to hear it at gigs over and over again. In the middle of the Good Guys lyrics fans raised their little posters saying ”Thank You Mika” and he looked shy smiling and thanking people. So sweet.
I was happy to hear Over My Shoulder again and this time thousands of people behind me couldn’t disturb my focusing. I didn’t even hear them, I just enjoyed the song. Most songs on the setlist were somehow even better than on average and the show was very generous giving many special treats and eventually – too soon for us – it was time for an encore.
Mika went backstage and came back wearing his tight black jeans with a bit too small adorable black T-shirt with a lighted ”M” on it (from the audience I think) and did a wonderful relaxed version of Ordinary Man playing piano and suddenly something clicked on its right place. I’ve never really got Ordinary Man before. I enjoyed his voice in Montreal but singing the song in that elegant suit a massive symphony orchestra on the background was everything but ordinary. Somehow it felt not credible and too dramatic from him and generally didn’t make sense to me.
It bothered me that I couldn’t understand the song like it was meant even I tried. I was listening to his relaxed singing in Cattolica and watching him in a T-shirt that looked like a children’s shirt and suddenly realized and could even imagine that someone can make him feel ordinary for real and the whole song made sense and I loved this sad and incredibly beautiful version of it. This is how the song should be performed. Unexpected but made me very happy.
I didn’t much dance during the gig, my muscles felt heavy and sore after the battle at gates. Even waving my hand felt too much and I thought it’s okay just to listen and enjoy and I really did enjoy the show. I closed my eyes for a long time during Happy Ending and not sure I’ve ever done that before at gigs but loved listening to the song that way. Lollipop with balloons in the end after Ordinary Man and the show ended.
Mika looked so happy, the band looked cheerful and impressed and I loved how Tim slapped his shoulder like ”well done” and we gathered together to have a little chat together before leaving to our hotels and Grazia and I just watched each other in agreement and no one really had to explain how they felt because everyone felt the same. Lovely. Thanks everyone I met in Italy, it was a pleasure. xxx