A Breath of Pure Oxygene
Last night, electronic music legend Jean-Michel Jarre graced the historic Tower Theater in Upper Darby, just outside Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was the quatrième stop on his first, albeit brief tour of North America. Upon arrival at the venue, my best mate Todd and I were directed to the box office for ticket reassignment. Apparently, local interest in the artist was overestimated, leaving a large number of unsold tickets. As a happy consequence, our balcony third row seats became center orchestra fifth row seats!
I was unaware that revered Philly DJ/Producer Josh Wink was the opener; however, Todd and I chose to imbibe a bit rather than observe Wink’s set. The Tower bar offered a special ‘Oxygene’ cocktail, comprised of Grey Goose, soda, and cranberry juice.
I’m not overly familiar with Jean-Michel Jarre’s extensive oeuvre; my attendance of the show was sparked by interest in Jarre as a pioneering producer, and curiosity in his reputation for innovative concerts. Jarre came on at 9:05 PM, quickly kicked into full gear, and maintained a euphoric energy for the duration of his performance. Supported by two multi-instrumentalists providing percussion and keyboards, Jarre blended contemporary and classic material, augmented by spectacular visual and lighting effects that created a rave-like experience.
Jarre stepped out from behind his circle of technology several times to speak to the audience with a very warm and genuine demeanor, and happily shook many hands with the crowd gathered at the stage when the concert concluded at 10:50 PM. I get the impression that Jarre has the same positive spirit whether he’s playing to a crowd of one thousand or one million.
While not a massive fan of Jean-Michel Jarre going into the theater, I was certainly a convert walking out. And I can only hope to be in similar shape when I’m 68!