Spain, September 2011 - by Marie Larmour

His Royal Highness moved his Court to Spain and hosted three Symphonica concerts there. First was 24th September in Bizkaia Arena, Bilbao, the second on the 25th September in Palacio Deportes, Madrid and the third on the 27th September in Barcelona Palau Sant Jordi.

Hailed as "King George" he was described in glowing, benevolent terms by the Spanish press describing him as seducing capacity audiences with his performances. They showed great sensitivity and understanding of his music and talent.

Fans tweeted in delight and non-stop, (Boy can the Spanish tweet!), attesting to the validity of those reports and to his royal status. "Palau Sant Jordi means the palace of St. George, where could you better be tonight...the king of the palace is coming!"

@GeorgeMOfficial has even started referring to the first & second halves as Act I & Act II, Hello Bev! Bilbao was her second concert, she got a bit of a shock with the first one! GM fans know how to express their enjoyment don’t they Bev? Don’t panic we’re nice once you get to know us as your finding out with the Dutch contingent! "Just met Bev. Nice lady. Lovely to talk to you @GeorgeMOfficial".

However we’re getting all posh now, in line with some of the elegant evening attire that’s being displayed by those owning party frocks in the audience. See what a few fiddles and a harp can do! But don’t despair diehard fans, even those dressed up to the nines are still GM fans. They all want to boogey, shout, clap, squeal and sing along with his Nibs like the rest of us…just not during the quiet bits (I’ve seen the video clips)!

His Nibs was well delighted to be there "Beautiful here very lush for Spain for this time of year…gorgeous men and women here!" Obviously his loyal subjects met with his royal approval.

However his poor wee head’s "spinning" due to the hectic pace of the increased tour dates. Naughty greedy fans demanding more tickets & sneaky Symphonica promoters adding more dates when George isn’t looking!

I’m afraid there’s more bad news on the way George. Don’t go blaming me I’m just the messenger. North America & South America are putting their spokes in for their Symphonica Tours! I think you had better break it gently to your Mr. John Thomas! His Twitter Lovelies will understand this remark and I’m much too shy to explain further!!!! Find a Lovely and squeeze it out of them, they’ll only be too happy to oblige!

He’s working hard bless him, with his "mixes" in between shows flying over and back trying to get two albums completed. As usual demand exceeds supply. He’s already got a single from his "club" album taking off.

Every Other Lover is rocketing chartwards at No 1 in at least one radio choice chart after only a few days and the press are talking of the Symphonia album as if it’s already out! None the less he’s out swinging night after night lapping it up! No puns intended there no matter how obvious they may appear! "Bilbao are you ready for me?...Its a place you filthy feckers...a place!"

The tweets show a beautiful mixture of fans of all ages, sexes, and status from all over the globe and from just around the corner if lucky enough! They’re coming by; public transport, (some panicking in a delayed journey from Santander), by private coach evidenced by the string of coaches outside the stadiums, by trains & planes. "At the airport ready for boarding for on Tuesday", "Can’t wait...flying in from Japan for Earls Court".

They are fans of over 20 years, first timers, representatives of fan clubs, those working in the music industry and friends that are sharing their third & fourth Symphonica concerts "parties" together. There are even whole families coming to concerts! "Next Tuesday me & all my family will see you in Barcelona!!! We are very happy."

They are all tweeting the same types of reaction to George’s newest musical ambrosia with varying degrees of delirium. "We are in Bilbao seeing George Michael Awesome", "Thanks forever! Your voice (a present from God)", "IM PRE SIO NAN TE"

"Bilbao cannot get enough"! "Onto the second encore after the crowd sang ‘Ole Ole Ole Ole’ Well done! #Symphonica Bev", "Thanks...for the happiness and incredible magical gift of your music tonight in Bilbao", "Thanks so much for this gorgeous performance. Bilbao has touched heaven tonight". "Unforgettable!" "Sounds even better live than in studio versions". Henry Hey tweeted "had dinner out with @themarkmclean, Ben Butler, Lucy & Shirley afterward we strolled and caught some of the riot".

I’m assuming this riot was happy over excited fans! Lucy and Shirley are those naughties who insist on making a steak sandwich out of their "boss" every night now! Such carnivores oops I meant cougers!

The press reviews were just as appreciative. "Former King of Pop in the 80’s & 90’s, with sales in excess of 100 million copies, and winner of two grammies, the Greek-born British singer took a walk last night in Bizkaia, still carrying his sceptre"..."with a display of musical and visual elegance and a sultry voice"..."King George reigned in Barakaldo"...

"Elegant and pristine, all in black, he sang to his ecstatic audience...Pristine sound highlighted every instrumental nuance and a visually spectacular show went well and measured to the last detail...He left aside the elegance of the orchestra and took his soul funk to the encore, encouraging the audience to sing along"..."The icing on the cake was I Remember You and the harp solo which had the audience in the palm of his hand".

"George Michael dazzles the faithful with a 41 piece orchestra, an ebony foursome of backing singers and a sextet led by the jazz pianist and musical director Henry Hey"...The second half was more reflective and nostalgic with sumptuous ballads with beautiful vocals"...

"Left for posterity on a new album this ‘Symphonica’ is the declaration of a sensitive artist and a versatile performer determined to exorcise his personal demons through music".

"To paraphrase the title of his debut single album ‘Faith’, there is a reason to continue having faith in this author of Jesus To A Child".

A Freudian Google translation of one quote was eerie and hopefully phrophetic, "The London based artist has come ashore Saturday in Bizkaia to present his songs from his latest album Symphonica The Orchestral Tour".

The above mentioned press excerpts were taken from; Dailymotion, Elnuevo GM,, Noticias Bizkaia, Andrew Porter, & Luis Gomez., Josh Olarte. Included are,,,,, Terra Noticias, Rolling & Blogofenia.

This is more than my usual quota of press coverage but for good reason so please bear with me. I need you to make up your own mind on a particular erroneous Rolling "review" (I’m being professional here) I will paraphrase it later. In order to judge it you need all the facts. Can you tell yet that my plumage has been ruffled?

People are entitled to their own opinion including journalists and normally I simply let these things wash over. I rarely find anything negative referring to this tour (one piece to date) and certainly not enough to include with all the other positive views. However I do take the criticism of fans seriously and am passionate about my own honesty and integrity.

Everything in here is researched meticulously by Moi! (Miss Piggy style hair flick!) If I haven’t read it, viewed it or can’t verify it, it’s not here. I’m not a journalist nor do I get paid for these articles however my word is honest, shamelessly irreverent but honest! Now back to the plot before you start thinking I’ve lost it!

Madrid had a 9.30pm showtime. His Nibs was pictured enroute, in a black limo, to the Placio Deportes. For all the world it looked like an gigantic American basketball stadium with a floating, semicircular, stand alone stage at one end. There was tiered seating on its sides and back stalls, four massive blocks high, holding over 12,000. Front stalls had some very plush seats!

"Nerves up to 100 Greetings from the audience", "I am so nervous that my picture comes out terrible", (relax it was quite good, trust me Honey I’ve seen a lot, lot worse!). "Buenos Noches Madrid" George greeted the audience. "I stood open mouthed at Praying For Time, Wild Is The Wind and A Different Corner. Kissing A Fool gave me goose bumps and I cried. Only complaint he was 30 minutes late". "Incredible...perfect on stage...most beautiful voice". "I’ve never seen him as well and as happy since the Tour 25 Live". "Amazing voice, orchestra perfect, subtle but exquisite scenery...A 10!", "...Lyrics as valid today as then" (20 years ago).

A few of the fans resembled those annoying cats who got the cream! "The view from my seat!" (Of course it had to be the front row CENTRE!), another ******* Lovely tweeted "I could have reached out and touched him!" Me Jealous? Hymp! I really couldn’t be happier for them, teeth firmly gritted!

"Time to sing Happy Birthday in Catalan. Why? George Michael asked the audience to sing it in Catalan." It was Jay Henry’s birthday. George announced it from the stage at the end of the concert and got the audience to sing to him. Perfectionist as always, he made them sing it again to make sure they sang Happy Birthday Dear J-A-Y and not just Happy Birthday!

Barcelona heralded a new dawn...NO GLASSES! Well they were in his hand but that’s better than on his face! This concert also saw yet another invasion of the Dutch Twitter team! @GeorgeMichaelNL "Team AnnemiekGM HappyS74 Dutchieemy Luuk2007 MagdaGMFan & TanteGeraldine all set! Here we go battle stations" "Enjoy the (twitter) show in Barcelona and the rest of the @GeorgeMichaelNL twitter team at battle stations".

"First song first standing ovation", "George laughing because he sees himself on screen while turning around LOL". "OMG if even possible his voice sounds better than in Koln. So warm so full of confidence". "Palais St Jordi had the first show of the 25 Live Tour here 5 years ago in 2006 (23rd September)".

"The audience is mega enthusiastic his voice is getting better and better". "He’s doing a lot of gymnastics with his voice so beautiful", George Michael is having fun on stage! Doing some add libs, I guess they call it that". "A big wauw through the audience on the high note in A Different Corner".

"Russian Roulette with the crowd clapping", "Russian Roulette one of the highlights of the evening I think George rocks it Bev #Symphonia". "End of act II and there’s mad stomping from the crowd. Didn’t think they could get louder. Ready for the encore Ole Ole is sounding - B".

The twitterteam is having a fantastic night with @GeorgeMichael doing his best to make each song special. "...played piano" was tweeted, then a few minutes later, "Sorry for the confusion! Air Piano he played!!! It all goes so fast…and so much to share", the curt reply of "Don’t dance and Tweet!" came moments after that!

"Wrap up happy George lots of smiles, big voice, every note perfect, great audience and the birth of the air piano", "Praying For Time with new melody line and lyrics". "Two hours of dancing and crying with the most amazing voice on the planet...Breathtaking", "Gracias you were stunning", "I cried at the last song".

"Thanks for all your hard work great twitter concert", "Thanx felt like I was there", "Thank u guys for a seriously GREAT twitter work tonight you made me relive it", (at previous nights concert). "Thank you...all friends tweeting live from Barcelona". "Nice one for our twitter party @GeorgeMichaelNL (Antwerp next Friday)".

These were the Spanish concerts via Twitter. So please explain to me as if I’m an idiot where the molly fuccles this boy was? Beg your pardon lets stay professional here...Mr Jorge Arenillas from Rolling Stone Magazine...was (let me paraphrase folks aided by Google translate)...apparently suffering..."‘Punishment in Madrid’" at a concert of 10,000 (???) from the Narcotic of the year. George Michael destroyed Police’s version and Rihanna’s and Amy Winehouse’s.

No English pop or rock star can be trusted to successfully orchestrate their own pop music and in so doing commit artistic suicide. Absurd ticket prices was paid by an audience primarily in their forties.

They could be divided into two groups, One of the 80’s nostalgia brigade and the second Gays who adopted George after he came out in the 90’s. However the latter weren’t as numerous, as this wasn’t their usual flamboyant party scene.

He was bored and almost fell asleep with the "blunt music that had no style". Nothing much was happening on stage and there was nothing to distract him from the "grotesque animations" that offended his senses. He objected to the ticket prices and commented on how unbelievably the most expensive ones always sold out first!

Did anybody see this person asleep at the Madrid concert amongst all the cheering, clapping, squealing, standing ovations and fans jumping out of their seats? He surely must have stood out like a dead corpse!

Pity he was unable to Listen Without Prejudice or even get to the right venue! How much did you pay him for this, Ahem, review Rolling Stone? Jesus Cano was at this concert and at Peter Gabriel’s and Sting’s the two other artists alluded to, who also orchestrated their work.

"I’ve been to three concerts of this style...George Michael being the winner. Why? Quite simply while the other two tried to make an impossible mix between their greatest hits and orchestral music, this often distorted their works with the most fanciful results.

George Michael has been a lot smarter and has been accompanied by a symphonic orchestra without any pretence of depth or transcendence beyond what they are and gives us an unforgettable night with his voice as the true protagonist and lead instrument. And what a voice!...".
I rest my big gob folks!

Thanks goes to: - Big breath -
@GeorgeMichael @GeorgeMOfficial @GeorgeMichaelNL @GMichaelNews @GMSingers @jvoxAcademy @HenryHey @themarkmclean @Leosmusic @GMFamilyForums @Dutchieemy @HappyS74 @AnnemiekGM @MagdaGMFan @TanteGeraldine @Luuk2007 @marj1970 @Marizen2 @pedrocg @PoshScouse0825 & @Disney30

The newcomers: - Even bigger breath -
@maneyog @Onion73 @gracielaferlen @thesonofdave
@xaviterns @Rollinstone @blogfenia @suesammon @esubira @nataliaestepa @oscarinNV @BakaSandelcu @Senyoradevader @Mariotejera @ABC @Annarita71m @joetyritell @Annettevan_s @EvaMRLn @antonella72 @xaviercendra @starfish639 @christyRidTam @MordenMe @Jazzel65 @La_Fillol @alzahari @soraya_Dior @AndyHamilton @igmartos @caprichosa50 @Georgefan67 @Nicolady87 @mireya @proma19 @adinefreyk @GMLovelies @farbmar @RikaFengShui @13vienna @juandiguerrero @Grasilla @monica_Ordonez @Ceci_Lie @oscar_herranz @Mateafa @DiegoAlonsoESP @ivdf10 @TheObserver77 @medbotan @robertolagonell @Alfred_Vallejo @ratpackthebest @AnaE @Tajan77 @MivallaDoro @elcorreo_com @Nefer7yri @yakarta @Irenitalb @carolinaminina @Urbanseashells @mikrodgon @SGoitia @Dailymotion @Trak_Fm @Jesuminguez @Mariska70 @georgia87ka @RafetikaLoveYOG @Yogworld @wisteriagarden @FrauTillmann @Mollie5555 & @SheriBarcelona