Review

It’s fitting that We Love NYC: Homecoming Concert becomes a long and losing battle with the elements. Midway through the five-hour musical event, when Barry Manilow sang “I Can’t Smile Without You,” an eerie voice prompted thousands to gather on Central Park’s Great Lawn. leave. A severe thunderstorm – caused by Hurricane Henri – is approaching, and people need to seek shelter elsewhere. Currently, the program will not continue.

I guess that’s to be expected for a concert created from a fantasy of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and burdened by hypothetical relevance to New Yorkers, not to mention the real meaning. of the event for architects and corporate sponsors. Before the crowd – masked, partially vaccinated – poured into Central Park, before Gayle King, the evening’s host, took the stage, and before musicians performed their overflowing repertoire. full of their energy, this flashy event feels otherworldly, unreal, and upbeat.

We Love NYC: The Homecoming Concert

Key point

Well conceived, but not at the right time.

Release date: Saturday, August 21 (CNN)
Producer: New York City, Clive Davis, Live Nation


The concert closed out “Homecoming Week,” an eight-day series that celebrates New York’s resilience through events across five boroughs. A press release in July from the Mayor’s Office was full of hype, describing the event as a “celebration of the return of New York City” that would “promote health, safety, and equity.” Mayor Bill de Blasio called it “an epic, historic moment,” and Clive Davis, the acclaimed music executive and show producer, knew it would be “unforgettable.” A stacked lineup of legendary talent, from LL Cool J and Earth, Wind & Fire to Carlos Santana and Bruce Springsteen, only reinforced the brilliance of the evening.

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However, as we inched closer to the event date, the concert’s relevance became more murky. Time out. Delta variations have gone through the city, higher number of cases and daily hospitalizations; new information about its transmission forced government officials to reverse an early rollback of indoor masks; a housing crisis hit hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers in need of rent relief; and a storm is approaching the city. Exactly what the event was attempted to commemorate is still unclear to me.

The show started off with a big dose of optimism. King, in a bright yellow summer dress, sunbathes on stage, beaming. She begins by thanking the essential jobs – doctors, nurses, bus drivers, cashiers – who carry the city on their backs, taking care of neighbors and strangers alike. This was followed by a statement emphasizing the NYPD. King expressed gratitude for their service. It feels like a confusing choice, especially since it ignores recent history: that members of the very working class the event was meant to commemorate marched through the streets in the summer. last year, protesting police brutality and asking city officials to reallocate funds from the overcrowded police force to the service society.

There was no time to stay, however, because, as King pointed out, the sun came out just before she stepped onto the stage. She took it as a sign of the purpose of the event and quickly introduced the New York Philharmonic. The ensemble opened their beautiful passionate film with “Candide,” followed by “Rhapsody in Blue” and then “New York, New York.” As gray clouds gather in the distance, the Philharmonic is joined by Italian opera tenor Andrea Bocelli, followed by American singer Jennifer Hudson. These early performances possess an honest sobriety – melancholy but not cynical. A reflection of the true mood of the city these days.

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Evening musical performances are diverse in type and quality. If nothing else, Davis and his team have curated an eclectic lineup of undeniably talented artists. While the energy of the crowd didn’t always match the vibrant spirit of Santana’s guitar solos or Wyclef Jean’s vocals, I can’t say the performers didn’t give their best. . So it’s a pity that some of the more anticipated musicians, like Springsteen, never took the stage.

However, the parts of the show that proved the most difficult were the openings – introductions made by the likes of Don Lemon, Senator Chuck Schumer, Mayor de Blasio and first lady Chirlane McCray. Their collective commitment to an unrecognizable story of New York – one in which a virus does not ravage the city and entire livelihoods are unbalanced – feels particularly exhausting. tired. Their repeated use of the undefined “we” confuses me. And the lack of any record of the number of people who have died during the pandemic is completely puzzling. Entire enterprise seems to be a way to reinforce the collective amnesia of the past 16 months, to move quickly through traumatic events, to claim unprecedented victory, and to let go of the responsibilities we hold. we still have to be together.

With inclement weather, the show had to be halted – and bailed out. Finally, the fallacies can be dropped and the absurdity of holding a city-sponsored concert in the midst of another pandemic on the evening of a hurricane will be revealed. But the evenings grew dreary, with Anderson Cooper attempting to continue where King had left off by maintaining a thin thread of optimism. He chatted in full with some of his CNN colleagues, co-host Chloe Melas and live reporter Erica Hill, and with some of the night’s musicians, including Manilow and Patti Smith. Still, it’s hard to appreciate Cooper making the best of a situation that probably shouldn’t have happened.

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Posts “Review” posted by on 2022-07-03 01:41:50. Thank you for reading the article at Beallich.com – Latest Entertainment News, Events… in the US

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