The Queen Extravaganza 2013

My wife and I saw the Toronto show of Queen Extravaganza a few nights ago at The Sony Center. For anyone not familiar with the band, it's basically a Queen Tribute band put together by Roger Tayler ex drummer of Queen. We saw the band in Toronto in the summer of 2012 at the smaller Queen Elizabeth Theater and it was great. There were 3 different singers which alternated songs, the set list had a great mix of hits (We Will Rock You, We Are the Champions, Another One Bites the Dust) and deeper cuts such as You Take my Breath Away, Lap of the Gods (1 and 2), March of the Black Queen. I knew that the Sony Center concert had cut down on the lead vocals and would feature mainly Marc Martel on vocals.

Over all the show was great and extremely well received by the audience. However I couldn't help thinking that they would've done better in a smaller venue, especially since the show was only a 3rd full. In fact, they were offering free upgrades for seats closer to the stage. Needless to say, my wife and I jumped at the chance to move from our balcony seats to floor seats.

My main complaints was that the show was much shorter then I would've expected. While the summer show had two full one hour sets, this show had a 40 min set, and then an hour set. As a result, less songs were played and there was an emphasis on the hits. I talked to Keyboardist/Musical Director Brandon Ethridge after the show and he mentioned that promoters wanted a shorter show and more hits. He himself seemed a little disappointed at this. Nevertheless there were some highlights such as "The Show Must Go On" which sounded HUGE and Powerful. Lazing on a Sunday Afternoon was nice and whimsical. Radio Ga Ga was fantastic, especially with the crowd participation. (I can't stand the studio version, but this live version rocks).

So again, a really great show if you're a casual Queen or Rock fan, but die hards may be disappointed at the lack of deeper tracks.

Wilton

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