Streisand: 2013 Concert Tour

London, England

June 1, 2013

O2 Arena

Barbra Streisand at O2

This page:

Set List

Kind, Gould, Streisand, Botti

Act One

“Diana's Daughters” (Rosyln Kind and Barbra):

Barbra:

Act Two

Chris Botti segment:

Jason Gould segment:

Barbra:

* Thank you, Claire Driscoll & Phil Day for the set list!

Streisand singing opening number

Reviews & Photos

Streisand at O2

The Independent Review

By Paul Taylor

Barbra Streisand's shtick on the concert stage these days involves affecting a faintly flustered comic bemusement that she's been a legend for over fifty years.

She kibbitzes with the audience as if to say, “Monument of the ages, moi? I'm just a Brooklyn kid who'd prefer to be back home in Malibu – without all this make-up and schmutter – rearranging my tchochkes”. But the unparallelled vocal gifts that have elevated Streisand to her legendary status were in awesome evidence throughout the concert she gave at the O2 Arena on Saturday.

It's a venue that makes Luton Airport feel like the Wigmore Hall. But Babs – in a spangly black-sequinned Donna Karan trouser-suit in the first half and backed by sumptuous sixty-piece band – imposed a wonderfully unforced intimacy on the proceedings, for which some of the faithful had forked out a top ticket-price of nearly £500.

Lately, the Voice has sounded a little scratchy and frayed, though the stout resolve and superb technique with which Streisand manages to hoist it over these difficulties has come to seem morally as well aesthetically impressive. And the great news is that she is currently singing better than she has done in a decade. From the “On A Clear Day” opener to the stirringly anthemic choral finale of  “Make Out Garden Grow” from Candide some three hours later, the liquid loveliness of her instrument, its inimitable combination of sweet molasses throb and black-coffee-like astringency, was back on goosebump-inducing form.

The highlights for me included a rapturously beautiful rendition of the Jim Webb classic “Didn't We” where she turns the phrase “that long hard climb” into a ravishing enactment of what it means and where characteristically ecstatic lift of the voice (that comes from there being almost no break between her chest and head registers) and the sense she imparts of producing transfigured speech are at their clearest.  She and trumpeter Chris Botti fashion a newly complex reverie out of you “Lost Inside of You” from A Star Is Born and she duets with her vocally talented son Jason Gould on a dreamy version of “How Deep Is The Ocean” that is a little masterpiece of controlled dynamics. 

She has ditched the manufactured boy band tenors (first Il Divo, then Il Volo) that used to be the grating price you had to pay for a Streisand tour.  Instead, it's now a family affair (her singer-sister Roslyn Kind gets a turn in the limelight.  And there's an amusing bit where she answers written questions from the audience (“Galashiels?  Is that right?” she asked with incredulous hesitancy, as if confronted by rare word in Serbo-Croat.)  A happy occasion, then, in which the greatest female popular singer of the twentieth century served renewed notice that it is business as usual in the twenty-first.

Roslyn Kind and Streisand

Telegraph Excerpts

By Helen Brown

... when the lights dim at the O2, we're treated to a long starmaking montage of old photos showing baby Babs growing from Brooklyn poverty into celebrity who manages to be both formidable and adorable. Throughout, she's goofing for the camera: pouting, posing, pulling silly faces.

A 60-piece orchestra ramped up the expection until the woman who once said she was "a personality before she was a person" rose up through the centre of the stage, top to toe in black sequins: looking every inch the star, and, more remarkably, still sounding like one.

She launched straight into the title song from her 1970 film, On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, singing with such emotional force that had the skies witheld a view, you believed she'd have blown the clouds away. Then she gives us two gorgeous vintage classics: a breezy Nice and Easy (the 1960 Sinatra hit) and Rogers & Hart's 1940 Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered.

[...] Later, a furious and fiery redition of Rose's Song from Gypsy boded very well for Streisand's long-awaited movie version. The Way We Were – delivered as a touching tribute to arranger Marvin Hamlisch – gave me goosebumps.

Talking easily to the London audience on Saturday night, she revealed that this was only her 93rd concert in a 50-year career and admitted she'd prefer to sing only a few numbers if she could get away with it.

Guardian Excerpts

By Hadley Freeman

Her extraordinary voice is still near enough intact, with only a few cracks in the richness in the upper register. The set, especially in the first half, showed off her range beautifully, moving nimbly from the energetic disco anthem No More Tears (Enough Is Enough) to the delicate The Way We Were, before roaring into a breathtaking rendition of Some People from Gypsy. At these times, Streisand seemed less like Streisand the phenomenon and more like Streisand the incredible talent.

The Times

Times Review

(Thanks for the scan, Stephen Thacker!)

Concert Notes:

Naomi Campbell and Streisand

END.

Other 2013 Live Concert Pages are here >>

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