Olivia Newton-John: Live at the Sydney Opera House
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Olivia Newton John & The Sydney Symphony Orchestra Live At The Sydney Opera House. Filmed live in March 2006, this DVD captures Olivia live with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra at the Sydney Opera House and contains full concert footage featuring her most popular & enduring hits, fan favorites, songs near & dear to her and a medley of hits from the movie 'Grease' all interspersed with behind-the-scenes footage from the historic event.
From "If Not for You" to "Physical," from Grease to Xanadu, from her successful battle against breast cancer to her support of numerous environmental causes, Olivia Newton-John has had a long, fruitful, and impressive career, as Live at the Sydney Opera House, a good-looking, great-sounding, beautifully performed concert recorded in 2006, will testify. Born in 1948, Newton-John is one of those singers who these days would be known as a diva, were it not for the fact that her musical style and overall manner are too self-effacing for so presumptuous a term. And while her voice is a bit less pristine these days than when she came on the scene with a series of country-flavored singles in the '70s, what little she's lost in purity is balanced by an increase in soul; she'll never be Etta James, but once she warms up, she hits the high notes with ease and sings with considerable power and confidence. What's more, though she's usually categorized as an adult contemporary artist, in the course of this career-spanning, 27-song set (backed by a first-rate band and the full Sydney Symphony Orchestra), she reveals herself to be at ease with a variety of styles, ranging from the aforementioned country ("Let Me Be There," "Please Mr. Please," and a rousing version of Dolly Parton's "Jolene") through soft pop ("I Honestly Love You," "Have You Never Been Mellow"), the movie hits (two from Xanadu and three from Grease), an electronically re-created duet with the late Peter Allen ("Tenterfield Saddler"), and even a creditable go at the torch standard "Cry Me a River." There are no DVD bonus features, but between-songs bits find Newton-John, daughter Chloe Lattanzi, and members of the band providing a tourist's eye view of Sydney. --Sam Graham
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Olivia stills has the touch, when she sings she can still captivate your heart! You can really feel the emotion in her voice of what made her so great!!!
She can make you feel wanting her in your arms & every second while she sings feel like a lifetime. Not only that she is so talented & captures the audience!
Olivia sure would be nice to meet in person, but know not in this life time!!! But if did, surely would have to be fate, guidelines to follow, & my honor...
But in all honesty, know it would never be! But having this DVD that belongs to me, is a piece of music history that I can always cherish...
Knowing that Olivia's voice will live an eternity & each time I watch it (on DVD) something new in me that I have always admire about Olivia wants me to know more of this famous Artist...
Would it be to much of me to ask for an 8 by 10 Color Autograph of Olivia? That alone to me would be priceless & have a setimental value only...
Olivia is so talented & has such a gift when she sings, that it seems she had a vision of this a long time ago...
I am not only so proud to have this DVD, my next plans is to attend her next concert if was able...
She has her fans holding on to her every word as she sings, that's because she puts her heart into it as though she has experienced singing each song for the first time...
Yes you could say I hopelessly get involved into each of her songs, because the sound is so pure...
Nice job Olivia,
M.S. Snow (USA
"Have You Never Been Mellow" opens the act and proceeds with songs from `Xanadu' before Olivia does a series of her country-flavored songs, including her first big hit, "If Not For You". A slow version of "Psychical" is extremely interesting and her own penned song, "Not Gonna Give In To It", a response from her battle with breast cancer. Mixing slow ballads ("Cry Me A River") with faster numbers ("Twist Of Fate"), the show completely entertains. The symphony adds an enormous element of power to the show with several symphonic song introductions.
"Tenterfield Saddler", a song written by Peter Allen is sung with pure emotion, as is the other Allen song, "I Honestly Love You". Of course, towards the end of the concert, Olivia plays with the audience and her band members by going through some of the bigger hits from "Grease" with a great rousing rendition of, "You're The One That I Want" and a fun, "Summer Nights". Concluding with the song version of the `Serenity' prayer, Olivia Newton-John brings home the goods.
The concert is a five-star, but this DVD I have to give less to. More than often, DVD Concerts mix interviews' in between concert songs, interrupting the excitement or mood of the entire experience. In between every song, we are witness to Olivia giving us a tour of Sydney, meeting fans and having fun, but this should have been a separate `extra' on the DVD. Still, this is a great experience and is in 5.1 surround for that feeling of "being there".
Of course Olivia must cover the old hits in a DVD of this type, and she does. "Physical" receives a much needed age appropriate twist with a samba version. However, I found the highlights of the concert to be the songs she has recorded since the pinnacle of her popularity, including "Tenterfield Saddler", "Serenity, " "Stronger Than Before," and "Cry Me a River." (Her performance of the latter makes me long for a jazz-influenced Olivia CD.). I was amazed that her performance of "I Honestly Love You," a song I'm sure she has performed thousands of times, was as fresh as if she were singing it for the very first time.
I highly recommend the DVD and its "bookmarking" of a long and full career. Those seeking an early 80s Olivia may be disappointed, but in the real world, people, and performers, in my humble opinion, are much more interesting when the change and grow.
In between concert segments are video of her taking in the sights in Sydney. I thought it was a great idea to include this footage, as it shows her personality, as well as folks recognizing her. (Their reactions are priceless!) Olivia takes it all in stride and greets everyone that approaches her. It's nice to see an international celebrity that is so down to earth...
I hope this review is helpful to those who are undecided or are looking for an entertaining DVD! Enjoy!!!