Friday, October 30, 2015

The Cliff Richard 75th Birthday Tour Concert

I got to watch my favorite pop idol, Sir Cliff Richard, perform live on October 14, 2015 at the Royal Albert Hall, London. After booking our tickets last November my good friend and I with our spouses checked into the Comfort Inn Hyde Park which is very close to the concert hall on October 13 after a smooth flight on SQ318. For the concert we decided to go for good seats since this may be the last opportunity we will see Cliff perform live. Optimistic as he is, Cliff seldom make predictions as to which will be his last concert. Over his entire singing career he appeared in no less than 5000 stage shows firstly in England, then thrilling his fans in the United States, then Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Israel and the Far East alone with his back up singers and dance troupe, and with his favorite musical group, the Shadows, and sometimes with guest singers. Cliff was indefatigable and thoroughly enjoyed his singing while engaging with his fans in between songs. Cliff danced and pranced on stage even till his 60s. However at his 75th birthday show we missed his dance troupe and his dance movements. I couldn't expect him to be as physically active as he was 5 years ago when he performed at his Bold As Brass concert at the same Royal Albert Hall. But his flair and ability to hit high notes are retained.

We arrived early at the concert hall in a London cab, collected our tickets from the Box Office and proceeded to door 5 where we were ushered into the Heineken Green Room reserved for VIP guests who paid a premium price for stall seats. We had pre-show drinks and light food before we took our seats at 6.45pm to wait for Cliff to come on stage at 7.00pm. As I surveyed the crowd milling into the hall I can't help noticing most of them were older ladies. Obviously Cliff still have a large female followings. The lady who sat next to me, who identified herself as Maxine, confessed this was her 6th attendance. She was indeed a very loyal fan. The Royal Albert Hall was packed full that night which coincidentally was the night Cliff celebrated his birthday in public. We were indeed fortunate to choose this particular show. However, to my disappointment, Cliff didn't make an appearance at the VIP room to say 'Hi' to us. If he did I would have unashamedly asked for a picture with him for remembrance. That was the only downside to this memorable event which brought me to London. The show ended at 10.30pm and we spent some time hailing a cab to bring us back to the Inn.

Here are a few memories of this once-a-lifetime show.

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