Update from then road #2
30 Jun 2011
Inside the Classics

All right, blog readers, it’s been another another epic week on the Sting bandwagon – it’s hard to give a nutshell recap, but here goes…

St. Petersburg has certainly been the largest crowd so far (150,000), but our most enthusiastic has been Gdansk, Poland, a beautiful little port town. It was a loud crowd and people were up and dancing long before the encores. There’s a certain energy you get from a good crowd, and even if sound isn’t optimal or you’re having a tired day onstage, that energy feeds you in rather amazing ways. We’ve had several days in which we fly, go straight to the venue, do a 2 1/2 hour soundcheck and then do a 2 1/2 hour show a couple of hours later – it makes for a long day, and a great response from the crowd can really keep you going!

Working with a different orchestra every day has been more enjoyable than I would have imagined; each has a distinct personality and set of challenges. The pickup orchestras in Russia have certainly been then most challenging, which is no surprise; add the element of unfamiliar style and repertoire to a group that doesn’t usually play together and you’re bound to come across issues. The nicest surprise has been the orchestra of tiny Aalborg, Denmark, which was an excellent ensemble, well-prepared and totally into the experience.

Working day in, day out with the band has been the most rewarding experience, though, getting to know the rhythmic proclivity of each member, where people like to go off on riffs, the timing and feel of different songs on different nights, reading everyone’s body language to see where they are both musically and personally. Those interactions can have a profound influence on the flow of the show, and I’m beginning to understand everyone’s groove. And I’m learning to gauge Sting’s mood by looking at his feet!

Bratislava was great last night – and we’re in a great hotel, which is one of the immense perks of this tour – in to Budapest tonight!

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