Mika @ Teatro Sociale in Como, Italy 10/2015
I flied to Italy on Friday and had a feeling I’ve traveled too much lately. I didn’t have time to properly unpack my bag after coming back from Paris and London so I just grabbed another suitcase. I knew I had to check in my flight but couldn’t remember where I was going. Oh to Como! That meant I had to fly to Milan. Quickly counted this was my sixth time in Italy since the Milan gig in June.
I arrived Como late Friday night, found Bine and our hotel and had dinner downstairs. The restaurant was nice quality. Como is such a pretty small place. The center and the lake are beautiful and we got the sunniest October weather for the symphony weekend. I went to see the venue on the gig day, saw the fancy old theater building and pictures Mika tweeted from inside and started to realize how extremely lucky I was to be there that particular day and how wonderful the concert in the evening would be.
Every opportunity to hear Mika with a symphony orchestra is special and something extraordinary so it’s difficult to compare them. The experiences in Montreal and Como were still slightly different for natural reasons. In Montreal Mika was a guest, respected that and closely followed the nature of the event. In Como his performing wasn’t that controlled, it was more relaxed, even playful and every way more his own style. Maybe for that reason the concert in Como made me even more touched and emotional. His singing was literally breathtaking, I forgot to breath when the music took over me and had tears in my eyes half of the concert without any need to think anything.
The audience in Como was too loud but I knew to expect that and Mika handled the situation quite well. Simon Leclerc told people off for clapping twice with his small hand gesture – I sent him grateful thoughts for that – and Mika gave shouting people patient smiles and chatted even a bit too much while keeping the audience in control.
Mika’s voice and especially the lower parts of it filled Teatro Sociale in the most emotional way and living through his performance created the most touching musical moments I’ve ever experienced and I could see every fan and every true music lover at the theater had an equally powerful experience. Toy Boy in the beginning was nervous but Underwater after that the best and most emotional version I had heard. I suddenly noticed my eyes are full of tears and I can’t even explain why, the performance was simply strong enough to make that happen. Boum Boum Boum wasn’t as powerful as it was in Montreal with Ida but I love this song performed live and a symphony orchestra gives it a different, more serious tone.
After that Rain and I had to wonder when was the last time I could really feel I hate days like this and I couldn’t remember. It was wonderful to get the song back. Then a powerful version of Last Party. I felt overwhelmed already and almost missed Overrated and Any Other World and can remember something similar from Montreal. Drunk was light and playful and together with Ordinary Man calmed me down. Then outstanding Heroes and I absolutely loved how Mika’s deeper voice filled the whole theater and I had tears in my eyes just because everything felt so right and made justice for the song and was so well deserved in every way both for the song and for Mika. Very impressive performance.
Then it was time for a break. I jumped from my seat and walked around the lower floor and gave people a few hugs just of happiness and then returned back to my middle of the audience seat. Mika started the second part with Grace Kelly, maybe my least favorite on the symphony set list and continued with stunning Over My Sholder. I always love this song, I’m happy to hear it at all kind of gigs but the symphony version is outstanding. Just like in Montreal I could suddenly see the whole autumn/early winter landscape in front of me, it was spectacular and something that happens only with the symphony version.
After OMS an amazing version of Good Guys, a true tribute to the persons mentioned in the song riding towards the sunset. Make You Happy and Happy Ending with a standing ovation, well deserved at this point of the concert and after the brilliant performance. Origin was done with the usual hearts and dancing, gentle Relax, two high-energy songs, beautiful Stardust in English and Toy Boy once again, a lovely way to end the show.
Mika looked stylish in his most beautiful Valentino. In the end of the concert he smiled happily, thanked the audience and nodded friendly to some young fans holding big posters and wrapped one of the ugly sheets around Simon Leclerc (who showed some disapproval). Very special night.