Sunday, May 23, 2010
Concert review: Sting at the Winspear Opera House (May 22)
It was the classiest rock 'n' roll show quite possibly in the history of ever.
DALLAS It was a who’s who of Dallas legends gathered into the Winspear Opera House on Saturday night for the second of a three-part concert series leading up to Super Bowl XLV at Cowboys Stadium in February. The first show of the series took place last month and featured the multi-award winning country artist Faith Hill, who kicked things off in a big way for the North Texas Super Bowl Committee. She played to a packed house at the Bass Performance Hall in Fort Worth and set the bar fairly high for the series.
Sting at the Winspear in Dallas (May 22)
Legend of rock music Sting, who took the stage in front of a packed house at the awe-inspiring AT&T Performing Arts Center’s Winspear Opera House on Saturday, gave the 2,000-plus crowd an intimate rock 'n' roll show.
It was clear from the start that this was not your run-of-the-mill rock show. Dallas royalty were scattered throughout the lobby, including Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, Dallas city council members, and other dignitaries.
The emcee for the evening was Troy Aikman, accompanied by former teammate and fellow broadcaster Daryl Johnston. The duo warmed up the crowd with a back-and-forth exchange and introduced entertaining videos in support of the upcoming Super Bowl. The most hilarious video was the last, which featured Aikman and Johnston representing the 90’s ‘Boys going up against the Roger Staubach and other '70s legends in a competition of their favorite sport -- golf.
In the end, it was Staubach who won the right to introduce the night’s headliner. Right off the bat, Sting and his band came out and put on one terrific performance. From the opening song right down to the final note, the audience was into it. All of his hits over the past few decades were present and accounted for: "Message In A Bottle," "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic," "Every Breath You Take," etc.
One of the highlights of the evening was when Sting invited audience members up on stage to join him for a song. Before then most of the crowd was sitting down, nodding their heads and tapping their feet to the music. But after the 30 or so people rushed on stage, the evening took a useful U-turn toward serious rawk. By the end of it all, there was not a person sitting down in the entire venue.
Sting performed two encores to an adoring crowd before the evening was over. The most remarkable part of it all was the intimacy created in the Winspear. Sting regularly fills arenas more than five times the size of the Winspear, and to be so close and among a very select group of people was truly a music moment that won't be forgotten.
A word about the Winspear: Open since October, the Winspear provides impeccable sound throughout the venue -- even in the lobby area. Spencer de Grey, who was the lead architect in this project, deserves every bit of praise he receives. He has built a venue that is perfect for rock 'n' roll shows as well as operas.
The third and final concert in the series leading up to the Super Bowl will take place in September at the Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. Due to contractual obligation, the name of that artist has not been released. (But, we were reassured that it was going to be a pretty gigantic star and they expect a sellout.) Let the betting commence! Who do you think the North Texas Super Bowl XLV Committee has in store for us?
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