The Bucket List HQ probably thought it was funny to send such a doomy guy to a Lindsey Stirling show. Such a sweet looking human being with electronic violin songs full of uplifting energy! But what HQ was unaware of, was that I had the biggest crush on Lindsey Stirling while I was in college. Which means, for a good four years I listened to her songs on repeat. So, it was a joy to get a chance to see her live. What I witnessed at Place Bell on July 30th was nothing short of impressive.
The show opened with a trio of musicians. The Federal Empire is composed of Chad Wolf and McKay Stevens. From what I understand, the third member was someone they met at the airport a few days before. Was this planned? Was it pure chemistry? Who knows. Whatever the case, the trio presented us with a strange array of country pop music. Though the melody in “The American Dream” was great, the very cheesy love songs and lyrics about girlfriends where strange, though I’m guessing it goes with the genre. The chemistry and tightness between the keyboard playing techno beats and the acoustic guitar is something I had never seen before. The addition of the extra member on electric guitar, though it wasn’t loud enough, added an extra flair to the music.
Bell Centre was filled by the time Lindsey Stirling took the stage. People who were expecting just a girl with a violin were surprised with the two extra musicians on stage; a kick-ass drummer and a man on the keys. The extraordinary tightness between the three of them was essential to this show, especially without any distortion to hide mistakes. As an added bonus, Lindsey Stirling was often accompanied by four female dancers, with one of them being a hometown girl. By the end of the set, I was saddened by the fact I had no chance of meeting these girls to salute them on their incredible performance. Coordination between dancers is something I admire a great deal; to be able to move like that with ease and timing is magical.
The song “Moon Trance” had the four dancers dressed up as skeletons, with movable tombstones placed on the stage as props. The lights were green and the atmosphere was spooky. It was also during this song that Lindsey, with the help of her dancers, changed costumes hidden only by a tombstone, in under a few seconds. Every song had a different atmosphere and vibe. “Take Flight” was about never giving up and had Lindsey lifted into the air as she sat on a bench. The dancers were dressed in classic ballerina outfits and danced beautifully. Not only was each choreography original, but there was a story presented. There was a quirky moment during the show where a man called Eric walked on stage to hold a sign reading “Intermission” while the drummer and keyboardist had themselves a little jam. Apparently, this made a lot of people mad because it felt like a waste of time, but the way I see it, it was much better than a thirty-minute long intermission of silence. At least we got a sick jam to keep us busy while we waited.
Faithfull to her original youtube fans, Lindsay played a medley of her video game covers. There was some Assassins Creed, Halo, Dragon Age and some Legend of Zelda. Not going to lie, that last one almost made me cry. The show ended with an insane cover of the Phantom of the Opera theme. It is one of her faster songs, with the keyboardist trading his keys for an electric guitar. It was a loud and powerful finish.
My only real complaint about this show was its length. People paid full price for an hour of Lindsey Stirling, which is fairly short, especially when you’re playing a bigger stage. Also, as I had expected, there were some missed notes on Lindsay’s part, which is totally understandable, considering she dances while playing the violin. That being said, she had much improved since her last live performance on Americas got Talent, which ended with her being sent home.
By the end of the show, I left Bell Centre with a bright smile. Lindsey Stirling knows how to put on a great show and it shows how much she works hard for her fans. Having somewhat stalked her carrier, I know she has often been put down, but to see her perform in front of a packed Bell Centre made me happy. It was a full circle for me!
Written by Johnathan Robinson
Photography by Mihaela Petrescu
*edited by Danielle Kenedy