by Alexis Ann
The only thing hotter than this 4th of July was Michael Bolton’s Show in the luxurious MGM Grand Theater on the 5th! The New Haven born superstar has a long list of artists he’s performed with including Luciano Pavarrotti and Ray Charles; written songs with Bob Dylan, penned hits for Barbra Streisand and KISS; played guitar with B.B. King and was sampled on a track by Kayne West and Jay-Z.
Opening with “Love Is A Wonderful Thing”, Michael struts across the stage dressed in blue jeans and a black velvet jacket over a white blousy shirt. The audience gives Michael an enthusiastic warm welcome and the woman sitting next to me is practically jumping out of her seat, clapping and screaming.
Later on, she shares a secret with me, “I went to kindergarten with HIM,” and offers me this New Haven Kindergarten Class photograph, pointing to Michael Bolton, a cutie-patutie even back then in 1959. At the end of the show, I find out that always on point, people-pleaser, John Bodnar, security manager special events, Foxwoods, is going to try to get her backstage for a meet and greet with Michael. COOL.
Michael tells the audience how happy he is to be in the new MGM Grand and comments, “The rooms are beautiful!”
Before beginning the next song, “To Love Somebody”, the legendary singer and songwriter, says, “I want you to sing to us tonight.”
A fan replies, “Okay, Michael.”
Michael answers, “You can yell out, too.” The audience breaks out in laughter. This sets the stage for an intimate evening with a superstar.
After the second song, a fan yells out, “Where’s Nicolette?”
“She’s working,” answers Michael.
He then introduces “Timeless Classics” and refers to his work and time spent with other stars like Ray Charles and Luciano. “These are some of the greatest moments of my life.”
At the top of Michael’s list of dream projects was an album of songs made famous by Frank Sinatra. Of course, he made his dream come true and “Bolton Swings Sinatra” is part of the collection he calls “Vintage hits recorded by other artists.”
Michael changes into a vintage Sinatra-era suit in tune with his next song, “Fly Me To The Moon”; followed by “Summer Wind”; “Day and Night”; “That’s Life” and of course, “New York New York”.
Extremely fan-friendly, Michael invites fans to the front of the stage. We wondered for a bit, is he serious? Yup. Members of the audience began joining him in front of the stage. Shaking hands with fans and even kissing some, Michael gladly posed for cell phone photographs. The friendliness was over-the-top! The new MGM Theatre was rockin’ with delight.