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Review: Diana Ross at the Murat


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Diana Ross
Murat Theatre at Old National Centre
Tuesday, April 24

Squeezed between five wardrobe changes, 68-year-old Diana Ross and her 12-piece soul review band, steam rolled through a 21-song greatest hits set at the Murat Theater Tuesday night. Making an entrance to a slightly too literal, "I'm Coming Out," a spry Ross cut straight to the musical chase, covering the various periods of her career in chronological order: Supreme, Diva, Disco Queen and Jazz Chanteuse.

There was a perfunctory quality to the early girl group material that was almost understandable, and spoke to the awkwardness of a 68-year-old singing a ditty like "Why Do Fools Fall in Love." Given Ross' age and reputation as a diva, one could have expected stage lighting and pastel gels. But, to her credit, The Boss, showing no signs of vanity and without breaking a sweat, worked the lip of the stage while withstanding a hot white spotlight the entirety of the night. A stark contrast to The Ross, who was booed at the 2008 Jamaica Jazz Festival due to her refusal to allow JumboTron projections of her performance to the cheap seats.

The biggest revelation of the night was how at ease and robust Ross sounded covering Billie Holiday's "Fine and Mellow" and "Don't Explain," even prompting a fan to yell, "You're an angel!" The evening coming to a close with a double whammy performance of "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" and "I Will Survive." Just prior to leaving the stage a gracious Ross, who had kept chit-chat to a minimum, surprised everyone by thanking the caregiver in the crowd who had been assisting her wheelchair-bound family member.

Setlist from Tuesday's performance at the Murat:
I'm Coming Out
More Today Than Yesterday
My World Is Empty Without You
Where Did Our Love Go?
Baby Love
Stop! in the Name of Love
You Can't Hurry Love
Touch Me in the Morning
Love Child
The Boss
Upside Down
It's My House
Love Hangover
Take Me Higher
Ease on Down The Road
Fine and Mellow
Don't Explain
Why Do Fools Fall in Love
Do You Know Where You're Going To
Ain't No Mountain High Enough
I Will Survive


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