Crocus City Hall in Moscow welcomes Vanessa-Mae

Watch Vanessa-Mae perform at Crocus City Hall in Moscow from December 2015.  A BIG Thanks to avid Vanessa-Mae fan CrazyCat!

Vanessa-Mae at Crocus City Hall
Vanessa-Mae at Crocus City Hall

The concert that almost never was

This December concert’s length is about one hour and thirty minutes, and it is my favorite out of all the concerts thus (make sure you check CrazyCat’s channel for the previous years’ concerts).  Here, you will see Vanessa-Mae perform a wide assortment of music.  Some of which dates back to her very first pop album: The Violin Player.  This concert also has the distinction of being the only where Vanessa-Mae did not use her Guadaganini violin.  She explains that there was an accident, and the violin’s scroll was broken.  However, she is happy to report that due to some quick thinking by the organizers, they were able to procure her another violin.

She starts out with a very old favorite of mine – Red Hot.  Then she continues with Havanna Slide and Morrocan Roll.  On top of the fantastic track listing, she also had a full orchestra and conductor, which is rare.  Normally, Vanessa utilizes just her band and a string section.  She also divided the concert into two parts, ending the first half with ‘Storm’ from her pop album by the same name.  Upon reappearing for the second half, she says she’s starting to get more comfortable with the violin.  She reiterates that this is the first time she’s played on another violin since she was 10 years old!  She then plays one of the most beautiful pieces from her album Choreography ‘Roxane’s Veil’.  I particular loved the piano accompaniment that’s absent from the album version.

A rare slip-up …

A reminder that she’s still getting accustomed to her new partner, she hits a bum note during the solo introduction to Happy Valley.  She curses a bit and smiles and completely starts over.  However, this is the only time there was any clear indication she was playing an instrument that’s not her own.  She comes out for an encore, but I’ll let you see for yourself what she plays.  It’s something she has not performed in a very long while! 🙂

The visual and audio quality is quite good for an amateur video, and I’m sure you’ll love it as I do.  Enjoy!!

Personal favorite performance of Toccata & Fugue by Vanessa-Mae …

Will this performance become your personal favorite?

If you were to ask me my personal favorite Vanessa-Mae song, I’d have to say Red Hot.  However, she’s best known for Mike Batt’s arrangement for Bach’s Toccata & Fugue in D Minor.  After all, this song was released as her very first single, and the title track on her first pop album.  In fact, it reached #24 on the Billboard charts.  To my knowledge, no other violinist has ever reached that high where the solo instrument is the violin.

My Personal Favorite Performance of Toccata & Fugue
Vanessa-Mae performs Toccata & Fugue in front a huge crowd in Germany. (Picture taken in 1996)

She still performs it to this day!  However, this particular video performance of this classic tune is especially .. well .. special.  The reason?  She performs in front of a huge crowd who gives her HUGE cheers at the end.  Secondly, she looks absolutely beautiful and her technique was on point as usual.  Lastly, she performs this piece on her acoustic violin where she normally uses her electric violin.  This makes a huge difference and sounds so much better in my opinion


P.S. Believe it or not, this was recorded over 20 years ago!

Interview with Vanessa-Mae reveals a painful rift she bears..

An interview that shows a glimpse of pain

Vanessa-Mae, arguably the world’s most popular violinist, seems to have it all.  In 2006, The Guardian names her as one of the wealthiest entertainers under 30 years old.  Furthermore, she was selected by People’s Magazine as one of the 50 most beautiful people in the world!  However, an interview that probes into Vanessa-Mae’s private life talks about something else.  The one thing that money can’t buy: a great relationship.

Vanessa-Mae’s mother, Pamela Tan, has been Vanessa’s full-time manager since the beginning.  There is little doubt that she has played a critical role in developing Vanessa-Mae into the world violin phenomenon she is known for.  Vanessa even credits her mother for this in numerous interviews.  Unfortunately, this has come with a price.

Here is a link to an interview she did in February 2014 regarding her relationship with her mother.  It is a very good read, and hardly surprising.  Many celebrities who have parents as their full-time managers seem to have problems.  Those problems arise for a variety of reasons.  In Vanessa’s case, she contends that her mother is too controlling.

She says in the interview that she could not date.  The only thing that should matter is her career according to her mother.  That’s not all.  She says she was also forbidden to play sports as it may pose a risk of injury to her prized fingers.  Reaching a breaking point, Vanessa-Mae feels she must free herself. She fires her mother as her manager on the eve of her 21st birthday.  Since then, she says that her mother has cut off all communication.  Vanessa-Mae accepts her decision and moves on with her career.  She laments that her relationship with her mother goes from one extreme to the other.  I believe Vanessa-Mae hopes to mend their relationship some day.

My Take?

I hope every parent reads the above article and take notes.  No amount of fame is worth sacrificing a good relationship with your children.  Never think that it is acceptable to put the secular success of your children’s career above all else.  Furthermore, never judge your children by their success in the commercial world.  Commercial success has less to do with talent than it does luck.  Not to mention that sometimes children are asked to sacrifice too much for that lifestyle.

Shekvetili welcomes Vanessa-Mae LIVE at Black Sea Arena!

A new venue is born in Shekvetili, Georgia…

Vanessa-Mae performs in Shekvetili, Georgia in a brand new arena.  I’ll get into details about that arena in a bit.  The crowd is very enthusiastic and cheers often during the concert.  Moreover, Vanessa-Mae feeds off the energy by cheering them on.  She even walks through the crowd during her encore performances.  I’m sure it was a huge headache for security, but it seems to work well for the crowd’s enthusiasm!

The Black Sea Arena is newly built.  Vanessa-Mae was one of the few artists who were fortunate to be the first performers at this venue.  In addition,  Christina Aguilera and The Scorpions perform there as well.  A very big thanks to Sopho Kokobinadze for providing the video footage!! Enjoy!!!! 🙂 ~Ben

Vanessa-Mae LIVE at Shekvetili, Georgia
Vanessa-Mae performs at the new Black Sea Arena in Georgia