Friday, 13 July 2007

Manchester Press Reviews

“…it is only in live performance, in her first UK appearance in the first tour she has ever done in Europe, that the power, range and unique tonal quality of her voice becomes fully apparent.”

“From the first song, the big ballad "Starting Here, Starting Now", the audience's faith was justified. It was a voice of enormous power but superb control.”

“…what is stunning is the sheer artistry of Streisand's interpretative range. She sings songs like she's telling a story, unfolding ‘Papa, Can You Hear Me’, from Yentl, as if it had the epic narrative of a grand opera. Some were simple, others were ferociously tricky, and yet they were each delivered with a deceptive ease. She made the lyrics of ‘What Are You Doing The Rest Of Your Life’ sound as though they were words she was spontaneously inventing and speaking to a single person in a private place.

The someone she was talking to was an arena full of fans who sent up cards bearing messages such as: "I have been waiting to see you the whole of my life." She progressed from one song to the next in a way which was not autobiographical so much as the story of the lives of those who listened. She was singing the soundtrack to their joys and sorrows, triumphs and failures.

There were some heavy swaths of sentimentality involved, but Streisand conveyed it with a freshness which was utterly uncloying. She sang "A Cockeyed Optimist" as if it had been written by Kurt Weil. Her encore, "Smile, though your heart is breaking" was dedicated to the drummer of her magnificent 60-strong orchestra. His sister, she hinted, had just undergone some terrible tragedy. She sang it slow, tinged with profound melancholy and enormous emotional power. A diva if ever there was one.”

Barbra the evergreen makes it all look so easy

“Barbra Streisand in 'impeccable' voice in Manchester. …her voice was in fine fettle, conveying easygoing intimacy on a jazz-tinged Down With Love and getting the audience on to their feet at the end of an emotional People.”
The Daily Mail

"People," sang Barbra. "People who need people, are the luckiest people in the world."

Last night she had 14,000 of them, all eating out of her hands.
The Manchester Evening News