Friday, December 4, 2009

about last night...

Good thing I was so busy yesterday before the concert, or else I would have been too excited to sit through my classes.  During one of my classes I stitched beads onto a sleeve I made for my outfit, went to the gym, a doctor's appointment, and did some stuff for the magazine I'm on.  After my last class I rushed back home, threw on my costume and makeup, and headed out to Sharpsburg to pick up my friend Scott... but not before Leigh and I got some strange looks from one of my roommates as we were getting ready to leave. Scott didn't go all out in a corset like we did (just a boring black band t-shirt- really Scott?).  With little time to spare, our odd trio headed to Mr. Smalls Theater in Millvale.

We got there about half an hour before the doors were supposed to open.  We left our coats in the car so we wouldn't have to carry them, so we huddled together for warmth in the 40some degree weather.  Thank God it wasn't raining.  When we finally got in we managed to get a center stage spot, with only two rows of teenage fans in front of us from the VIP session.  We made friends with a high schooler named Kamy who was a huge Emilie Autumn fan.  She had been to an EA concert in Chicago a few weeks ago, so she was able to give us tips on what to watch out for during the show, as well as when to know the start of the concert.  So we chatted with her mostly for the next hour as the theater gradually filled up and the numbness melted away from our bodies.

(From left to right:  Me, Kamy, and Leigh)
At 8:09 Kamy and I were sort of freaking out.  The concert was supposed to start 9 minutes ago.  Where was Emilie?

The classical music playing over the speakers blared out some noise and stopped.  Then the intro music began, with the Bloody Crumpets coming out on stage: first Captain Maggot, then Lady Aprella, then Naughty Veronica, and finally the Blessed Contessa.  They contorted and flirted on stage for a little while.  Then something that looked like a bird popped up on the shadow screen:


And everything came to a stop.

The music changed to the steady, metallic beat of "4 O'Clock" as the silhouette moved behind the screen in sharp, abrupt gestures and positions.  Finally Emilie Autumn came out from behind the screen, a wild mask with a long beak on her face and rat-like tail sewn to her bloomers.

The show had begun.

It was terrific for a stage show.  The costumes were wild, all of the girls had a terrific stage presence (except for Contessa; she looked constipated most of the time, and when she's talk in her haute society speak, I could not understand a bloody thing she was saying) and the crazy Victorian girl thing was played out well in little skits.  They threw biscuits and tea at the audience during songs, girl-on-girl kissing was prominent, and most of the swearing was followed with the more proper: "Indeed."

As I expected (see this post), everyone seemed to know the words to "Shalott," which was performed beautifully.  Even some of Emilie's duller songs, such as "Liar" and "God Help Me" was full of antics from her and her crumpets.  In "Liar" she wheeled about on stage in a gold wheelchair, jumped up on it, flopped down on it in a move I was sure had broken her back, and kept it up with violin in hand most of the time.

There were a few downsides to the concert experience, though.  During "God Help Me," Maggot drank some "pee-laced tea" and spit it right into our faces.  It smelled like pineapple juice, but the fact that it had been in her mouth and we were directly standing in the third row, center stage, had me wishing that there had been a warning somewhere about the possibility of that happening.  When I got home I had to shower, and now I definitely have to hand-wash my corset top.

The other issue I had was with the skits.  Most of them were based on some sort of fake lesbianism attributed to the "Asylum inmates."  While this seemed to excite the guys in the audience (like Scott), band members' making out and such soon became rather old.  It was one thing for Veronica to play the sexy Rat Game with one excited teenage audience member, but it was another to have Maggot and Contessa pretend to "consummate" a marriage behind the shadow screen- by that point in the show, such actions had long ceased to be a shock factor. And the audience members kept shouting for more, with Emilie calling us all perverts.  Well, we are if this is what entertains us.  I don't mind lesbian-like PDA any more than other types of PDA, but I don't find it all that entertaining or creative when it's shoved down my throat like it was during that concert.


(Maggot, on stilts, and Emilie, on the violin, share a kiss)
Another thing about the skits: they seemed to take too much away from the concert aspect.  I think I enjoyed the first part of the concert more than the second part because there were more songs that weren't interrupted by long dialogues on who Veronica has made out with, for example.

Scott made an interesting observation about the performance lesbianism and skits- they had probably started out as funny little side things between songs, and soon turned into this full-fledged show comparable to the Rocky Horror Picture Show, with everyone in the audience except perhaps for Scott, Leigh and I knowing what was going to happen next.

Don't get me wrong, I loved the show.  Maggot proved to be very flexible, body surfing, walking on stilts.  Aprella showed off her lovely long legs in ballet moves and pointe shoes, and some magic tricks with flaming tea bags, a scarf turning into a cane and an unbelievably long red ribbon being pulled out of Aprella's mouth at least impressed me.  I wish they had done more of that, though, and less of the excessive sexual innuendos and vulgarity.

The definite highlight was seeing Emilie rip it up on the violin.  I tried taking a video of one of her violin-only songs, but I had taken so many pictures at that point that I ran out of memory for video.


So instead I will add the video for "God Help Me."  You can see the pee being spit at us, Maggot body surfing, and Contessa being spanked by Veronica.  The video does go sideways for about 20 seconds in the middle, though, because I forgot that you have to hold the camera horizontally the entire time.  Emilie is not seen very well in this video either due to the stage lighting:

UPDATE 12/20/12- THIS VIDEO NO LONGER EXISTS (i.e. the blogmistress accidentally deleted all copies, on and off line.).

And here's another video, from someone with better filming skills than I, who filmed Emilie performing "Dead is the New Alive":

6 comments:

  1. You're obviously not a true fan or most of this wouldn't have been a surprise to you...

    But what can you about the not so true at heart? Am I right fellow Muffins?

    x

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  2. "Another thing about the skits: they seemed to take too much away from the concert aspect. I think I enjoyed the first part of the concert more than the second part because there were more songs that weren't interrupted by long dialogues on who Veronica has made out with, for example."

    Clearly what you don't get here is that Emilie has never wanted to put on a concert-she wants it to be theatrical, she wants a west end musical much more than she wants a plain concert. Her shows have never solely been about the music. You want something that solely focuses on music? Listen to a CD. The music is not the main focus of an EA show and probably never will be.

    A point about the lesbianism-it is not an act and it is not fake. All the girls do actually sleep with each other, and they don't do it on stage to be shocking. They do it because they can, and to show that people should not be afraid of their sexuality.

    Now, you're entitled to your opinion. You can disaprove of the show experiance, the lack of focus on music and the lesbianism if you wish, but don't whine about how you didn't know the shows are like this if you didn't bother to research them first.

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  3. To respond to these two comments:

    I think there's a difference between a "true" fan and a passionate one. I think the two muffins who commented here are passionate and true fans. I am just a fan; I would think a "true" fan, since I enjoy her music and follow her activities with great interest. That is a matter of opinion, of course. But I am not passionate and probably never will be, as I have no interest in joining EA communities, even if I do share her music with nearly everyone I know. If you're read any of my other blog posts about her or information I come across on her, most of it has been out there for weeks, months, or even years before I find it and post it as new news to me.

    As for the concert, I deliberately researched as little as possible on the actual show experience itself to get a fresh perspective on the concert. The only thing I think should have been explained beforehand to the audience was the chance of having something that had been in a band member's mouth spit out at the audience members. One must admit, at a time when people sue McDonald's because they burned themselves on hot coffee bought there, that there was no disclaimer when I bought the tickets that I might have food thrown at me or pineapple juice spit at me. I can easily see some overprotective parent with no interest in EA bringing up a lawsuit about the issue.

    Also, those water marks won't come off the silk in my corset. Thank goodness I anticipated concert damage and didn't bring a nice corset. :)

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  4. omg..... Do EA and her lovely crumpets really sleep with eachother? That's sexy to the extreme. I would totally do something with most of them. Not the Contessa, she's not my type, but I would totally get with EA and Veronica and Captain Maggot and Aprella. They're way hot, and they sing wonderfully. Actually, I wasin the front at her concert in Seattle, and I was the first one Veronica kissed that show. I would have played the rat game except some other girl threw her bra on stage and got to go up there. TT.TT
    I'm glad the corset came clean; mine did as well. I also caught a cookie when they threw food at us. It tasted funny though... I got kissed so much that show, it was great.
    I happen to like the lesbianism myself, being halfway there, so I don't see what's wrong with it. I liked the theatrical aspects as well, it was all very dramatic. The kisses and innuendos were among my favorite parts of the show, and i liked that they all got into character. I also thought about creating one for myself, but I don't have enough costumes (or sewing skill) to fit in. I did give Emilie a necklace, which she liked but couldn't fit over her unicorn hat. I cannot wait for the next concert. I think that you should also go, even if you don't like the acting and kissing. She's worth it, all the way.

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  5. "Anonymous" can't be too much of a fan, as they appear not to have read Ms Autumn's wiki (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emilie_Autumn), as Ms Autumn at least claims to be asexual (as in, not interested in sex with anyone, male or female) - given that she was a rape victim, I find this highly plausible. Wiki may not be the best resource in the world, but I think claims of Ms Autumn's homosexuality are the result of wishful thinking. I think she's probably more interested in it as a visual statement.

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  6. "So instead I will add the video for "God Help Me." You can see the pee being spit at us..."

    PEE?!?! XD <3!

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