Tue 30 Jun – Tarja, Tarja Turunen
I just came back from Switzerland and this concert that occurred yesterday. Let me say first off it was the BEST concert I have ever been to.
I came horribly unprepared though, I wanted to buy a shirt but didn't have any of the local currency to do so. I wanted to take pictures but the venue website said "No cameras" (Z7
) While Tarja's site said that all fans were allowed to take as many pictures and videos at they wanted. So I just took my cell phone, turns out they DID let people have their cameras and these are both mistakes I won't make again.
Arrived at a little before 7pm local time (concert was set to start at 8pm). There was a line outside the venue but they started to let people in at about 7pm. I was lucky to have a spot in the 2nd row front center (standing of course). Then began the LONG wait. My ticket said "Tarja and Special Guest 8pm". Well 8pm rolled around and nothing. It was really hard to wait too, the temperature that day was at least 90F, we were stuffed in a small building with a couple hundred other warm-bodied humans and in was closed indoors. I felt like I was going to die. Without local currency to buy water and with the security taking outdoor drinks away from people anyway I was doomed. I made a fan out of a sheet of paper and waited.
9pm rolled around still nothing. Crowd is getting pretty impatient and smelly. At about 9:15/30 the show finally started, no special guest, just Tarja and I didn't mind.
The show was spectacular. The band was great, and Tarja was energetic (despite the heat which was easy to tell was taking a toll on her too) and wonderful. She paused several times to address the audience personally, reference the heat and suggest that some water be handed out (the security later came around with bottles and cups to try to get some to the crowd).
This concert had everything the Nightwish concert I attended last summer (Colmar, Foire aux Vins 2008) lacked; a great vocalist, an excited crowd and music you could FEEL. I personally was moved to tears as the intro for Sleeping Sun started up.
The band had it's own moments to shine as well and boy did they ever!
The cellist was awesome. I was even amazed to see a cellist at all! So this was totally cool.
The drummer put on quite a show as well. I have NEVER seen anyone hit those drums the way he did. He wailed on them in that heat at a fast pace for at least 5 minutes, twirling and juggling his sticks all the while! He was impressive, I swear I thought he would drop dead at some point, I was truly concerned for his well being (It was VERY hot).
The bassist was great as well, even playing with his teeth at some point! And the guitarist had his own little solo too.
They were all very great. I think the most under appreciated band member was the keyboardist and back-up vocalist. But she did very well, she just isn't as easy to see behind her instruments.
The show "ended" with Nemo. But naturally we got our encore and it was so worth it! The real end of the show was Die Alive which I knew would be because of the gesture Tarja made before starting (and announcing that it would be) the last song. She walked a bit towards the back and gave the "cut" signal. It was very obvious that the heat was taking it's toll on her though.
The concert itself ended at about 11pm. Myself and a few others hung around for memorabilia (set lists, drums sticks etc). I got none, but those begging "please!" got lots. One guy even walked away with 3 items (drum stick, guitar pick and setlist). I was personally annoyed at my lack of begging assertiveness for some but oh well. At Midnight the security kicked us out and went around back and hung around with the others waiting for Tarja and the band for autographs. And man did we ever wait!
We watched as the band members basically ignored us and walked on to their bus. I would have loved their autographs as well but I get the feeling they either thought we didn't care or just wanted to leave.
By 1 am we were still waiting and no sign of Tarja. The equipment was loaded up onto a van and hauled off and we still waited. The security guards started coming out in their civilian clothes and we still waited. We were informed by one that Tarja was in back talking with either fans and/or some people she had known for a long time and was probably going to be there a while. 2am still waiting... some of the waiting fans are getting really ugly and many are leaving, I will post more about the behavior of the fans below because this REALLY irked me.
2:05ish am who I am assuming was a stage manager of some sorts came out and made the comment to someone she was with that we had been waiting for hours. She went back inside with determination.
2:15am 3 older people who I had seen in the row in front of me left the building. I am assuming these were Tarja's guests/fans/friends.
At about 2:25am the woman from before came out and announced that Tarja would be coming "soon" and the mood of the waiting fans lightened a little.
2:30 am Tarja emerged. She said "aww" to see that we were still waiting for her. Her attitude and voice sounded extremely sincere. I don't doubt that she was, and honestly believe she probably lost track of the time.
We all got an autograph and she even stood and took pictures one by one with everyone. I was very happy, yet disappointed that I only had my crappy phone to take a picture with.
But there is something about this concert that I did NOT enjoy and this was the attitude and comments of some of the fans waiting for Tarja. In particular I will reference a group of French-speaking (the concert was in the German part of Switzerland) females with a male who was holding a French flag that had the logo of the official French Winterstorm Fan Club for Tarja.
Not only were they extremely annoying, (talking loudly, making stupid and not funny jokes, singing loudly/badly, and speaking in very poor exaggertated English like that made them smart) but they were bad mouthing Tarja the WHOLE time. One girl complained that it was her birthday and that Tarja needed to make more of an effort. She proceeded to call Tarja a "connasse" (roughly "stupid bitch") amongst other obscenities. I was shocked. These people were waiting hours for someone they supposedly were a fan of and kept bad-mouthing her.
Their attitude didn't go unnoticed in the crowd. Many were irritated by their lack of respect and childish behavior. One annoyed fan finally spoke the mind of others and told them to "shut up" (in a more vulgar way) and that the girl who was supposedly having her birthday to turn 22 (we could all hear about it because of how loud she was) was acting like a 12 year old girl. The altercation was short lived and made the crowd a bit uneasy, but the group eventually quited which made the majority happier.
When Tarja came out this same group (and this specific girl) proceeded to kiss up to Tarja like I have never seen. The birthday girl sweet talking Tarja: "It's my birthday can you write that for me?". I was disgusted. So much to the extent that I took it upon myself to post in the French fan club forum in regards to it:Over all was an enjoyable concert. A lot of waiting (for it to start and for Tarja to come out at 2:30am). But what brought me here was a bit of disappointment, not with Tarja or the concert itself, but with some of the French fanclub members. I heard some things that NO ONE in a fan club of any one should be saying. There was a group of females with a male who had the fanclub flag who said some really horrible things about Tarja. I heard one call her a certain obscenity that I will not repeat but was truly shocked. One of the girls was angry that Tarja wasn't "making an effort" because it was her birthday. Even more disgusting, not only bad-mouthing her while waiting, but when she finally came out in the dead of the night, pretending to be all nice and sweet. "Oh thank you" etc. I'm appalled at the behavior of these so-called "fans". Tarja owes NOTHING to anyone. She didn't have to sign autographs, she didn't have to take pictures with everyone, but she did. And quite frankly I was ashamed to be myself visiting her from France (where I have been living for a few years) and hearing people talk and behave in such a way. I don't mean this as an attack, but I think that it is something to be reflected upon. As part of her French fanclub it would be best to put your "best face" forward and show some respect for not only her but the other attendees of the concert.
Tarja will be at the same venue in September. Money-willing I will be there again. This time with cash, a camera and a pen. And maybe, just maybe, these immature fans from before will be too busy with college or school to disgust me again.