The Life and Music of George Michael Concerts

The Life and Music of George Michael is making its way across the United States in February and March. The show is a concert featuring one singer for the Wham! years and another singer for George Michael’s solo career.

You can find out more in the following clip.

You can find the list of tour dates here.

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George Michael Talks about the Symphonica Tour and More

George Michael has an interview with Wales Online.  Here is a recap:

On the Symphonica Tour

“And my audiences are just so amazing now, they really are. I can sort of feel their love and gratitude when I’m on stage and I think that comes from them having so many of their life experiences attached to my music over the  years.”

“One of the ways they’ve (his fans) shown their appreciation to me on this tour is by being so patient with the songs I’m performing. I’m sure there have been numbers that they’ve never heard of, or the occasional jazz standard or whatever, but they’ve just seemed totally prepared to go on this musical journey with me. I think that really shows the level of fans that I have.”

On the Pneumonia and Coma

“What I do remember, though, was feeling this terrible, terrible guilt and pity for what my family, friends and my new partner had to see me go through,” he admits.

“They literally spent two or three weeks not knowing if I was going to make it, and if that had happened to me in reverse – if it had been one of my sisters fighting for her life – well I know I’d have been absolutely devastated.

“For my part, though, I didn’t realise the danger I was in until after it was all over.”

On “White Light” and the New Album

“It’s really a celebration of my coming through pneumonia last year,” he says of his new single. “Pretty much everything I do is autobiographical, and in this case, having come close to death, I knew something good musically would come out of it. A lot of people were expecting me to write a ballad, but I wanted something uplifting and positive, hence the dance track.”

George says the new album is “going very well”.

“I’d say this album lies somewhere between Faith and Older in terms of content and it’s probably the most radio-friendly album I’ve made in a long, long time. It’s pretty upbeat and I’m sure that my fans will like it, although I’ll be waiting for them to let me know which tracks they think will be the potential classics. I haven’t settled on a title yet, so watch this space. I think it’ll be out early next year.”

On Success

“I don’t know how it happened, I really don’t. But I’m still here and my new single really kind of says I’m not ready to go anywhere. In my business, success is something that can sort of slip away from people after a while. And not just success but also the inspiration and the self-doubt that’s needed to keep you trying to do better.”

“For me there’s always this possibility that you’ve lost something that you’re not aware of. And that’s exciting, you know. Because the day that I’m not  worried anymore is the day that I should stop. I think if you’re complacent about your talent then it can definitely drift. That’s much less likely to happen if you realise what a privilege it is to be talented and successful in this business.”

You can read more in George Michael on his near-death experience, new album and career.

George Michael Cancels Tour of Australia

George Michael cancelled his Australian tour on Sunday because of “major anxiety” related to the pneumonia that nearly killed him last year. The Australian leg of the tour was supposed to start in Perth on November 10.

“Since last year’s illness I have tried in vain to work my way through the trauma that the doctors who saved my life warned me I would experience,” George wrote on his web site.

“I was wrong to think I could work my way through the major anxiety that has plagued me since I left Austria last December.

“As soon as I complete these shows here in the UK I will receive the treatment which is so long overdue.”

Michael said doctors had recommended complete rest and counselling but he had “believed wrongly that making music and getting out there to perform for the audiences… would be therapy enough in itself.”

Though he said his voice had recovered completely, adding that “I truly think that some of my recent performances have been my best ever,” Michael said there had been a heavy psychological toll.

“Unfortunately I seriously underestimated how difficult this year would be,” George said.

Chugg Entertainment announced that Sir Elton John and his band will be the first act to open the newly constructed Perth Arena with a second Perth Concert on Saturday 10 November.

The event will be performed “Under The Stars” with the Arena roof open. Elton John’s other Perth concert, already sold out, is on Monday 12 November.

This concert by Sir Elton John replaces the George Michael concert scheduled for 10 November. Customers who currently hold tickets to George Michael’s Perth Arena concert on November 10 have the option to use these tickets for the new opening event, Elton John, on the same night, or to obtain a refund on their tickets. Ticketek will contact ticket holders to advise of the process to be followed.

In a statement Sir Elton John said he is excited to be the opening act of Perth’s new home of entertainment.

“My dear friend George Michael has been giving some amazing performances on the Symphonica tour, and I’m very sorry that he can’t play the Perth concert.

“But I’m more than happy to step in for him and play the opening night at the brand new Perth Arena on November 10.”

“It is a fabulous building and I’m told we can even have the roof open for our concert and play under the stars!

“My band and I will make absolutely sure that Perth Arena has an unforgettable opening night, and we are looking forward to seeing the city come out in force to celebrate this stunning new building,” he said.

You can read more at:

George Michael’s Manchester Concert Reviews

The two reviewers of George Michael’s Manchester concert didn’t see things the same way.

Manchester Evening News writes:

The full orchestra provides a spectacular backdrop to the show, and breathes a sparkling new level of seduction to old George classics.

Eighties favourites Father Figure and Different Corner are sensual singalongs while the likes of Cowboys and Angels and Kissing a Fool were made for this sort of symphonic treatment – it’s truly spine-tingling stuff.

It’s super-stylish too, a sleek black circular set, with our Gorgeous George at the heart of it all in sharp black suit and Tom Ford specs.

… Too many magic moments to mention, this tour proves 49-year-old George is back, and boy he means business.

The Guardian writes:

However, the covers are as hit and miss as his driving. Rufus Wainwright’s gay persecution lament Going to a Town is ethereally beautiful as is David Bowie’s Wild Is the Wind, before its unfortunate funk detour, but the vocoder version of New Order’s True Faith (“about addiction”) damages Michael’s vocals far more than his tracheotomy might have.

At 49, he seems to be struggling to recover the once uncanny ability to deliver what his public wants. There aren’t too many screams of excitement when he opts for big band standards and a cocktail jazz version of the Police’s well-worn Roxanne over Faith or Careless Whisper.

 

George Michael Returns to UK stage

George Michael returned to the UK stage yesterday when he performed at Birmingham’s LG Arena. George told the crowd, “I’m back.”

Joking with the crowd, he told them: “You could have stayed at home and watched ‘The X Factor’ tonight. I may be 70-years-old but I can still do it.

“That might let people on to the fact that I actually watch ‘The X Factor’. I only watch it because my boyfriend likes it.”

You can read more at:

George Michael First International Pop Star in Opera Garnier

George Michael has become the first international popstar to perform in Paris’ Opera Garnier, a venue more known as a stage for classical music and opera.

He performed Sunday evening, as part of his “Symphonica Tour,” to support French AIDS charity Sidaction.

Before the show, George tweeted:

Well me, not exactly operatic. In fact, I am told that mine will be the first non-classically trained voice to sing on that prestigious stage. Not sure I believe that, but it’s a nice thought, if a bit terrifying.

As the gig came to a close, the 49-year-old told the Paris crowd: “Paris, you’ve been wonderful. It’s good to see you all.”

French fashion designer Jean-Paul Gaultier, The Artist actress Berenice Bejo, Bond girl Berenice Marlohe and actress Dolores Chaplin, the granddaughter of silent film star Charlie Chaplin, were among the celebrities who gave the singer a standing ovation at the French opera house.

“It’s so touching to see George sing here, and it is very special to see him in the Opera Garnier,” said Chaplin.

He performed a selection of his biggest hits and American standards before the swaying crowd, winding up with an explosive finale of “Freedom” and “White Light.”

Tickets for the concert went at up to 1,300 euros with a special dinner thrown in. An auction raised 68,000 euros, with a dinner for six with George Michael at his London home bringing in 31,000 euros.

After the show some 250 celebrities met George Michael at the invitation of organizers Line Renaud and Pierre Berge.

Berge, the companion of late fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent and co-founder of Sidaction, declared: “The only vaccine against AIDS is the condom” while singer and entertainer Renaud praised George Michael as having always promoted “sex without risks.”

The concert and dinner swelled the coffers of Sidaction by some 289,000 euros.

See more at:

George Michael Continues Symphonica Tour

George Michael resumed the Symphonica tour yesterday by paying tribute to the medical staff who kept him alive when he had pneumonia.

He returned to the stage at Wiener Stadthalle after postponing the tour in November when he fell ill. Some 300 staff from Vienna’s General Hospital attended the show, after being given tickets as a thank you gift.

“I’d like to take the opportunity to say that there are a number of people without whom none of us would be here tonight. This is one of the greatest honors of my life, to sing to the men and women who saved my life,” he said, before singing his rendition of Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good,” a request from one of the doctors.

Before his final song, “White Light,” he said, “One last treat for you all before we go. I think given the manner of men and women who did save my life, we could not go without singing this song. Let’s hear it for the people who saved my life!”

George had completed 46 of the original 65 dates of his European tour when he was taken ill hours before he was due to perform in Vienna.

Following a second date in Vienna on Wednesday, Michael will perform in Paris for an AIDS charity gala this weekend and then in Amsterdam before moving on to the UK.

You can read more in:

Symphonica Tour Resumes in Vienna

George Michael resumes the Symphonica tour in Vienna tonight.  Ten months ago, George was forced to postpone the remainder of the tour when he caught pneumonia and nearly died.

Austrian media reported that 300 hospital staff – from doctors to cleaning crews – will attend Tuesday evening’s show. With his permission, the hospital is selling another 700 concert tickets he donated to raise money for lung disease research.

George Michael posted on Twitter:

Hey everyone, it’s that time again! And I get to open the tour singing to the men and women who saved my life. And it’s a beautiful day!

George Michael in Olympics Closing Ceremony

The Olympic Games closing ceremony on August 12, 2012, will feature Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend alongside Take That, George Michael and Emeli Sande on an all-star bill.

The Mirror article states:

George Michael’s app­­earance will be a glittering return to the stage for the star who last year cut short his European tour after he was diagnosed with life-threatening pneumonia.

He has not sung in public since November.

Organisers said: “George is a global icon and this will be a major comeback. The gig will be a fitting Olympics send-off.”

Rescheduled Symphonica Tour Dates

George Michael has rescheduled tour dates from the Symphonica tour that were canceled because of his bout with pneumonia.

Date Venue Details
Sep 04 Stadhalle Vienna, AT Newly Added! Presales start Mar 21
Sep 06 Stadhalle Vienna, AT Rescheduled from Nov 21/11
Sep 09 Palais Garnier Paris, FR Rescheduled from Apr 29/12 Presales start Apr 02
Sep 14 Ziggo Dome Amsterdam, NL Newly Added! Presales start Mar 22
Sep 16 LG Arena Birmingham, UK Rescheduled from Dec 9/11
Sep 17 LG Arena Birmingham, UK Rescheduled from Dec 10/11
Sep 21 Arena Manchester, UK Rescheduled from Dec 12/11
Sep 23 SECC Glasgow, UK Rescheduled from Dec 06/11
Sep 24 SECC Glasgow, UK Rescheduled from Dec 07/11
Sep 29 Royal Albert Hall London, UK Rescheduled from May 02/12
Oct 01 Motorpoint Arena Sheffield, UK Rescheduled from Dec 02/11
Oct 03 Metro Radio Arena Newcastle, UK Rescheduled from Dec 03/11
Oct 05 Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, UK Rescheduled from Nov 26/11
Oct 06 Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, UK Rescheduled from Nov 27/11
Oct 09 Arena Manchester, UK Rescheduled from Dec 13/11
Oct 10 Echo Arena Liverpool, UK Rescheduled from Nov 30/11
Oct 13 Earls Court London, UK Rescheduled from Dec 16/11
Oct 14 Earls Court London, UK Rescheduled from Dec 17/11
Oct 17 Earls Court London, UK Rescheduled from Dec 19/11

George Michael Hopes to Resume Tour in September 2012

George Michael took to his Twitter account once again, this time in regard to his postponed concert tour.  He tweeted:

realistically I can’t see my vocal cords being being ready till the summer, but then I have to think about people losing out if …. they are on their summer hols. So September seems the most likely. Sorry about that everyone. Rest assured I will use the time wisely… As in… working on improving the show, mixing the live tracks, finishing brand new tracks!

He also tweeted:

Pneumonia may have been a bastard thing to go thru, but normally when I suffer you guys benefit somehow, don’t you think 🙂 That’s just how it goes in GM world. God’s little joke. Long may it continue 🙂

George Michael Diagnosed with Pneumonia

George Michael has been diagnosed with pneumonia and as a result, the November 26 and 27 shows in Cardiff, Wales, have been postponed.  According to his official site:

With great regret, George Michael has been forced to postpone his November 26 and 27 shows in Cardiff, Wales, due to his ongoing illness.

George was recently forced to postponed tour dates in Vienna and Strasbourg under doctor’s orders after being diagnosed with pneumonia. He is currently receiving treatment.

Plans to reschedule these postponed tour dates will be provided when available.

The Daily Mail reports that he was hospitalized in Vienna, Austria:

His concert promoter Manfred Leodolter told Austrian press today: ‘George Michael is still in Vienna. Doctors have warned him for the moment against flying and he is getting rest in Vienna.’

George Michael also may be having some heart problems, according to AFP:

Austrian channel ORF reported that the singer was also suffering from heart problems but the statement gave no further details, and contacted by AFP, the Vienna hospital where he was reported to be being treated declined to comment.

We all hope you’re feeling better, George!

Symphonica Tour in Australia

George Michael’s Symphonica tour will be moving on to Australia in 2012. The dates are as follows:

  • March 31 – Sandalford Estate – Swan Valley, Australia
  • April 3 – Entertainment Centre – Adelaide, Australia
  • April 7 – Hope Estate – Hunter Valley, Australia
  • April 9 – Rod Laver Arena – Melbourne, Australia
  • April 14 – Allphones Arena – Sydney, Australia
  • April 17 – Entertainment Centre – Brisbane, Australia

George Michael Suffering from a Chest Infection

From the official site:

With great regret, George Michael has been forced to postpone his November 21 concert at the Stadthalle, Vienna.

A doctor visited George this afternoon and confirmed he is suffering from a chest infection, and on medical advice he has been advised that he cannot perform tonight to allow him time to recover before his next concert at the Zenith, Strasbourg, on Wednesday, November 23.

A spokesman for George Michael said that “he is disappointed that he cannot perform tonight’s concert, but he has been advised to rest, and is very sorry that he has had to postpone”.

The promoters have asked ticket holders for tonight’s concert to retain their tickets.  Further announcements regarding a replacement date will follow.

All other dates on Symphonica – The Orchestral Tour will not be affected.

The tour commenced in late August. George has performed 45 shows to date as part of his Symphonica – The Orchestral Tour.

George Michael Reviews at Royal Albert Hall

Here are some of the recent articles and reviews on George Michael’s performance at Royal Albert Hall, as well as his cancellation of tonight’s performance.

October 26 Performance Postponed

From the official site:

With great regret, George Michael has been forced to postpone his concert tonight (Wednesday, October 26) at the Royal Albert Hall, London.

A doctor visited George this afternoon and confirmed he is suffering from a viral infection and has a high temperature, so on medical advice he has been advised that he cannot perform tonight to allow him time to recover before his next concert at the Royal Albert Hall on Friday, October 28.

George has performed 35 shows to date as part of his Symphonica – The Orchestral Tour. The tour commenced in late August and George had his first UK concert last night in London.

A spokesman for George Michael said that, “He is disappointed that he cannot perform tonight’s concert, but he has been advised to rest. He received a tremendous reaction from the audience last night and is very sorry that he has had to postpone”.

The promoters have asked ticket holders for tonight’s concert to retain their tickets.  Further announcements regarding a replacement date will follow.