UAI ¦ De Oosterpoort, GRONINGEN 19 Feb. 2016

Review by Glad Williams (Switch to

It's been a long time coming, but thanks to (mainly) Dutch music lovers and supporters, Todd Rundgren's "Up Against It" hit the stage tonight at De Oosterpoort in Groningen. This debut European production boasted a full symphony orchestra and local residents of this Parish, The NNO. The audience were asked to pretend they were watching the movie-that-never-was by writer and producer, TR.

To share the workload with the main man, we had principal singers Mathilde Santing and Wouter Penris, both of whom had proven their mettle back in 2012 when they provided backing vocals for TR at his Paradiso "Extravaganza ll". We had a choir too: students from Amsterdam Conservatory. The amazing Tom Trapp once again worked his magic by arranging TR's music for orchestra. He was spotted onstage just minutes before the show commenced, making final tweaks. What a Pro' !

The Marcel Mandos -led orchestra, conducted by an animated and enthusiastic Hans Leenders, were poised and ready to go.

My first thought when asked my opinion of the show was "Well, it was #@!@ing great!" However, if this is to be a considered personal review, I need to be a tad less pithy. So...

Awesome/Amazing/Stellar/Superb/Beautiful were some of the adjectives flying around from the audience. That it was a unanimous success was agreed by all. But I think the main message that was picked up by me (and by others, I am certain) was how satisfied and happy Todd looked. For crying out loud, three days' rehearsals only and then Show time...he must have wondered if it would all pull together.

Now I don't know a Crochet from a Cow, but I do know these aren't the easiest songs to sing. So when I sit there with my mouth open saying "WOW" after a number, then I know I've just had a Sonic Treat.

I must give mention to the evening's Secret Weapon, namely a reet-petite young lady who, according to TR, was the only one who had the balls to take on this next song. She had my full attention from the first note of " You'll Thank Me In The End." By the final note, she could have HAD me! Brava. Mesmerising stage presence. She is Pitou Nicolaes I am told. Thanks Facebook friends!

Not forgetting the Hats and batshit-crazy plot, 'Twas a wonderful, wacky experience. I loved it.

Finally, I would like to express my gratitude to The Facilitator. The man who FIXED IT for Todd and made it possible for all to enjoy. My heartfelt respect and love goes out to Co de Kloet.

Other reviews for Todd Rundgren Dates
2/19/2016 - Oosterpoort - Groningen, Netherlands

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