LIVE REVIEW: Il Divo, L.G. Arena (Birmingham), 14.04.2012

Classical man-band Il Divo have exceeded all expectations. Formed by Simon Cowell almost nine years ago to cash in on the popularity of the pop-opera wave, led by Andrea Bocelli, the multi-national quartet are clearly counting their blessings. As they take to the stage accompanied by a 35 piece Orchestra to perform for the sold out Birmingham audience, they launch into a standing ovation worthy rendition of “Come What May (Te Amara)”, which is met by rapturous applause by their hungry audience.
While they initially veer away from chit chat, with somewhat awkward explanations interjected between songs, they build steadily to the opening act highlight-a chillblain inducing rendition of “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina”.
With the audience eating out of the palm of their hands, they draw act one to a close with their first standing ovation of the night.
As they return to the stage for the second act, their general demeanour is far more relaxed and it is clear that they are determined to enjoy the second half as much as their audience. The relaxed presence of the performers prompts raucous screams for a wanting audience, who are thrilled by the new banterful approach.
With the second half acting as a celebration of their finest release to date, 2011’s “Wicked Game”, the evening takes on a very personal feel-with proud new Daddy (for the third time) Sébastien Izambard enchanting the audience with nursery rhymes-and most importantly a birthday cake to celebrate David Miller’s 38th birthday.
With the audience interaction crescendo-ing, the boys evoked the full spectrum of emotions from their attentive audience as they journeyed through “Crying”, “Mama” and “Hallelujah” before concluding proceedings with a clear fan favourite “Somewhere”.
With the audience stomping for an encore, their wish is granted as the quartet  return with a rousing rendition of the Bocelli classic “Time To Say Goodbye (Con Te Partirò)” that induces the first sing along of the evening as the loyal fanbase bid farewell to the musical maestros.

Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Anna Brown

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