Instead, returning to the Albert Hall last night with a truncated “greatest hits” set, she stayed within her own new limitations — she mentions the two replacement hips and new knee — to offer a show that was full of spirit. And that’s precisely what the audience have come to collectively celebrate: her own history and ours with her…
…And she’s thin again, too. The voice may at times be more of a throaty, breathless rasp and she hits some really bum notes, but the spirit is still willing, even if the flesh (and voice) is less so. But her vulnerability and palpable need have survived: she needs us almost more than we need her. Her declaration of love for the audience doesn’t feel like some phony showbiz sentiment, but one she really feels; “you are my family now”, she declares. Last night was a family gathering of some 5,000 people, coming together once again to cheer, not jeer, as our most famous member goes through her paces again.
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Photo from Broadway World
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano’) about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman’s Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia’ column for Dancing Times magazine.