Article: a review about Alexander Rybak’s performance in Canada

Written by Arianna Brooke, photo courtesy of Aviva Klein, video by vladaceban

Rybak’s Appearance a Fairytale For Canada’s Eurovision Fans

Toronto Centre For The Arts
Main Stage Theatre 
5040 Yonge Street
Toronto, Canada
Concert of Alexander Rybak and The Papaduke Band
Feb.23rd 2013, 7 pm.

Alexander Rybak gracefully took to the stage on February 23rd, coming way across the pond to make his Canadian debut, performing an exclusive one-time concert in Toronto’s Centre for the Arts in North York. North American Eurovision Song Contest and Rybak fans had a chance to come out of hiding, and out of hiding they certainly came, including a duo who flew in from Texas for the Norwegian violinist.

The promotion for the concert was a success and the majority of the orchestra section was packed as well as a good chunk of the balcony! It was a wonderfully diverse crowd, including a lot of Russians whose dialects were probably the most heard. In front of me sat a young Russian girl who was absolutely bouncing with excitement about seeing Alexander.

In what seemed to be equal billing for both performing artists, it was a slight misfortune that Alexander was given a short allotted time-frame in which to perform. An underdog as you could call him, Alexander appeared to be the opener for the more seasoned, long-time performers Vasyl Popadiuk and the Papa Duke Band featuring Robi Botos, with his performance only lasting approximately a mere 20 minutes.

However, those 20 minutes were certainly not wasted. Alexander was a highly interactive performer who told some humorous anecdotes and always gave the audience something to do during his hit songs; whether it was clapping to Europe’s Skies, pushing our arms up in Leave Me Alone in protest against his stalker or singing AYEE AYEE AYE!!! at the top of our lungs to Roll With the Wind. There was always a fun element to the songs which left the audience grinning.

Of course, one cannot forget Fairytale which was fantastically performed and was accompanied by not two, as we we were accustomed to seeing, but three charming Toronto ladies who did the backing and some dancing. The Torontonian talent who joined Alexander on stage included two jazz dancers who incorporated some rhythmic gymnastics and two break dancers, all of whom definitely kept the stage alive.  It was never too busy on the stage and each performance was very well-balanced which proved to be an entertaining sight for the eyes.

Alexander Rybak with Aviva Klein
And then it came to the fans’ most awaited part: the meet and greet with Alexander Rybak! Poor Vasyl Popadiuk, who returned for an encore, came back on stage to a slightly emptier theatre. During the remaining 10 minutes of his and his band’s performance, Rybak fans had fled the performance hall to queue up for pictures and autographs. It was a long and winding line, but Alexander kindly stayed and waited until each one of his fans received a picture and autograph. He generously gave an equal amount of time to each fan and engaged in conversation. As we are so used to seeing him on large stages appearing like a small guy, it was quite a surprise to see how tall he actually is in person!

It was like living in a little Fairytale of our own that this multi-talented Eurovision winner came all the way to Canada to perform and we hope to see him return soon! Perhaps the success of the concert will bring forth some more Eurovision contestants to the multicultural country of Canada.

 

This post is also available in Русский.

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