We are just home from three days away in the ‘big smoke’ (as my grandparents called Sydney). A Paul Simon concert was the lure that triggered our escapade! Fortunately it was the most extraordinary concert we have ever seen, totally amazing and thrilling for we poor country folk. But first share the overture in Chinatown, where we ate in the Dixon Street food court, and generally soaked up the vibe as we walked towards the Entertainment Centre.
Then we found our way in, found our seats, and watched the very good support act, Rufous Wainwright. We were surprised to see so many empty seats, but they were all filled by 8:30pm, just before Paul Simon and his eight or ten musicians came onstage.
There were 5 encores … as the packed Sydney Entertainment Centre crowd stood shouting, clapping and cheering, singing and dancing, while the musicians valiantly tried to leave. Paul Simon sang for nearly three and half hours, with his voice just as clear and strong at the end, quite a feat I am sure. We rocked to Gracelands, sighed with Kathy’s Song and Hearts and Bones, laughed and sang through so much of his amazing repertoire, including some unrehearsed oldies from Simon and Garfunkel days. Of course many in the audience were our age … but there were heaps of younger people too! After the fifth encore we flooded out of the hall, dispersing into the streets of the city, all glowing with the music and joy of the concert. Eventually, after an energetic walk in the right direction we found a taxi to take us back to our harbourside hotel.
I photographed the harbour lights, including the (not usually) blue Opera House, even caught our glowing faces in the lift mirror, then the lights from our room … what a night … very unusual, but that is the way this year is going.