Monday, June 19, 2006
Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad
„He exists, he has arrived and he is singing for us“ is just one of the comments which could be heard at Sting's concert performed at Petrovaradin Fortress on Monday evening. It might sound prosaic or even pathetic, but it is something that you can always count on when it comes to emotions, and they were abundant this evening.
In front of an audience of about 20,000 people, Sting was showing, for almost two hours, how the Big ones did it and why his name was followed by a star and the title of the British Sir. That was why many (expected?) comments were not heard, as well as a bit of contempt couldn't be even seen although the audience's wish for more songs was not carried out.
Generally, anyone who was at the Fortress that evening, can rightfully say that he or she was treated with respect, at least when it comes to musicians. The same as it may be said that Sting didn't come to „knock off“ Novi Sad, but the famous perfectionist made the audience feel that the world's guest had arrived with the coordinated team and left nothing at random, not even more encore appearances than it had been foreseen.
Sting gave the priority of appearance to Joe Sumner his son, who was warming up the audience with his band Fiction Plane. It wasn't being waited long for the scene to be darkened and when the Fortress heard the first measures of Message in Bottle after „Good evening Novi Sad and Serbia“ having been said, it was clear that what the audience could listen to on the records or compact CDs was not „made-up“ in the studio, polished and unachievable alive. When it comes to Sting, that is why it doesn't surprise that there is no deception and that he is the one who can sing, being in complete harmony with the instrument he plays, all the concert - breathlessly.
For this reason, the comments of the ones having heard the songs such as Englishman in New York, Walking On The Moon, Fields of Gold, Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic, Shape Of My Heart among other songs, do not surprise, because they sensed that they finally saw and heard, in front of them, what they could only listen to on players or gramophones.
That was why the facial expression of a woman of possibly Sting's age in the audience, who came to the concert with her son, didn't astonish at all. No matter how it sounds, but there was something ritual in her smile, and the way she clasped her hands.
The same goodness as it was in the people who came from Belgrade, Niš, Kragujevac, Novi Sad and many other cities of Serbia and the neighboring countries, who almost went on a pilgrimage to the Fortress on Monday. There were different generations among these Sting's admirers, because some of them came only because of Roxanne, whereas Desert Rose was one of the favourites of the others.
The self-confident sound of the two guitars – Dominic Miller and Lyle Workman, drum support by Abe Laboriel and Sting's bass and voice made the audience call out encores twice and wish them for the third time. Fragile was the last one - it was being sung in harmony with the man like an English prince with wide trousers, a modest jacket and energy which requires bowing. The audience might have sensed that as well, because it sounded as Sting's echo at times, without too many loud tones, which certainly made this Englishman not be „an alien“ in Novi Sad, but show them his thousand faces and „be himself no matter what they say“. In all likelihood, while leaving the Fortress and Novi Sad, this British also sensed this and sent his blessing to the audience with a promise to come again.
(c) Dnevnik by D. Lubarda