Sunday, November 25, 2012

Marking our return to the concert scene

The last time Jude and I got a chance to spend a night out without Sophie was January 2010-- Avatar was playing in the theatres, neither one of us had graduated, and Sophie had not even stared on solids yet. We were home for Sophie's first Christmas and the family was more than happy to jump at the opportunity to babysit. Since then, we'd just never got round to getting a babysitter in Ann Arbor and by then, we had just gotten used to schlepping Sophie everywhere with us. We had to eschew going out to anything past her bedtime but that was something we just got used to.

But sigur rós isn't just any old something and now that we're back home, family is around again to help us out with watching Sophie. She was more than happy to spend the night at the grandparents and hang out with her aunts, uncle, and Julianne-- she had her jammies, books, and toys picked out the night before and it was all she could talk about all Friday. When we said bye to her before the concert, she gave both of us a tight hug, reminded us that she was going to miss us, but told us to have fun anyway :)

According to Sam, Sophie did whine a little just before bedtime and asked for both Jude and I, but snuggling helped and she eventually fell asleep quietly and slept through the night without any fuss (except maybe sleeping horizontally and hogging precious bed space...) So all in all, I think Operation "Jude and Serene Return to the Concert Scene"was officially a success. We were praying it would be, what with Regina Spektor in December and possibly the Laneway Music Festival in January... ;)

Speaking of which, sigur rós was simply astounding. We've loved their music for so long and to be able to see them in Singapore was an exquisite experience. For a couple of hours that afternoon, I was so afraid that the concert would get washed out by the heavy storms, but thankfully the skies let up, the concert went on, and even though it did start to pour towards the end, it was less an inconvenience than a poetically fitting end to a gorgeous set. Because really, who listens to sigur rós on a bright sunny day anyway?...

I listend to them A LOT as I was writing my dissertation and there were several moments throughout the concert that brought up difficult memories of me crouching over my laptop tapping away into the wee hours of the morning, which made for a rather complicated experience, especially while standing in the drizzle that would then give way to a downpour. But I love how I feel when I listen to sigur rós-- complicated or not-- and watching them 'live' and sharing that with Jude and my cousin Terri was something quite quite special.

The concert didn't exactly have the same vibe as what I had always envisioned a sigur rós concert to be (see video below) but having it out in the open at Fort Canning was quite an inspired idea, although it would not have been my first choice in Singapore. I was expecting something smaller, a little more intimate, something more befitting the spare lushness (how's that for an oxymoron) of their music. But it worked out beautifully in the end, and it was quite the night to remember.

More pictures here.

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