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GLADYS KNIGHT CONCERT (article first published : 2007-11-9)

Sponono Entertainment in association with SABC 3 and Metro Fm made it possible for SA fans of Gladys Knight to see the diva perform at the ICC Durban Arena on October 28.

4pm, Sunday October 28: ticket holders for the Gladys Knight Tour Concert, waited patiently for the ICC Durban Arena doors to open. At 5.15pm the doors were opened for concert goers to enter. Seating was numbered, but no ushers were available to assist. There were hundreds of empty seats available as the Arena was not filled to capacity. Patrons were left standing for some time as they could not find the seating numbers allocated on their tickets. A short while later, extra chairs were brought in and placed next to chairs bearing the previous number on unseated patrons allocated tickets!

At 5.50pm Swazi Dlamini, who was the supporting artist, performed. Her rendition of Ain’t No Sunshine When He’s Gone, was rocking! Her performance ended at 6.10pm and then … Nothing!

The concert was scheduled to start at 5pm. There was no Master of Ceremonies, hence no communication with patrons to inform about the delay in Gladys Knight’s performance.

At 6.45pm the band came on stage. At 6.55pm Gladys Knight appeared singing Best Thing To Ever Happen To Me. There was still no explanation or apology from anyone to the late start to this 5pm concert.

The seven-time Grammy Award winner was stylish in a black and white caftan and black slacks. She performed all-time-favourites including Love Overboard, Stormy Weather, I Heard It Through The Grapevine, Midnight Train To Georgia and Love And Happiness. Her rendition of Karen White’s Superwoman was memorable. She also paid tribute to fellow artists Ella Fitzgerald, Dionne Warwick, Aretha Franklin and the Isley Brothers.

Her big brother Bubba, who was one of the “Pips”, joined her on stage. There was lots of good music and “fooling around” on stage.

Born in 1944, Gladys Knight still looks as stunning as ever – and has the rhythm to go with the looks.

The Motown-hits trip ended at 8.10pm.with End Of The Road. Let’s hope that this will be the “beginning of the road” with better concert management from Sponono Entertainment, SABC 3 and Metro Fm.

A point to ponder - tickets for the concert ranged from R310, R360 and R410. – Pauline Dalais




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