So what do you on your only night off from an 8 performance a week run in a Broadway musical? Perform at the famed Radio City Music Hall, of course. Tony award winner and star of Disney’s blockbuster hit Frozen, Idina Menzel, had a sold out one night only concert at Radio City Music Hall on June 16th that I had the pleasure of attending.
The power house songstress was not pulling any punches! She opened the show with “Defying Gravity” from the Broadway musical Wicked. Immediately following that song, Idina walked the length of the stage and commented on the enormity of performing at such an iconic venue as Radio City Music Hall. Unbeknownst to many of the audience members, Idina has a little of a potty mouth as she stated how f**king huge Radio City Music Hall is. This would not be the last of the F bombs dropped over the course of the evening. It eventually dawned on her that the popularity of Frozen had most likely brought many little girls to her show. When she asked the audience if there were little girls present, after a resounding “Yes!”, her response was “well cover their ears so I can do my thing.”
The set list for the rest of the night included more songs from her previous Broadway shows Wicked and Rent as well as her current Broadway show, If/Then. She also treated her long time fans to a song from her very first album, which she admitted was not a success by joking with the audience that maybe 15 people purchased the album. She also announced that she is working on a Christmas album and performed a song from that album called “December Prayer”. Idina rounded out her set with covers of some of her favorite songs like “There’s No Business Like Show Business”, “Anything Goes”, “Everything’s Coming Up Roses”, “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”, “In Your Eyes” and a “Love For Sale/Roxanne” mashup. When she sang “Take Me Or Leave Me” from Rent, she invited audience members to come and join her on the song. Even though none of these people could actually sing, it was fun to see them have this moment of sharing the stage with Idina Menzel.
But my favorite cover of the evening was Creep by Radiohead. Idina explained to the audience that like everyone else, she has those days where getting out of bed to face the world is difficult. Even though she is tremendously grateful that she sings songs like “Defying Gravity” and “Let It Go” that serve as inspirations for many people, there are just some days where you’re just not in the mood to let it go. So on days like that she likes to listen to a song like Creep.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the little wardrobe malfunction that occurred. When it came time for intermission, Idina didn’t want to leave the stage at the risk of losing the energy and flow of the evening. Stage hands brought out a white couch and changing partition. She changed into a robe and sat on the couch where she proceeded to have a fake phone conversation with her ex, Taye Diggs, and their son Walker where she bragged to both that she was in the middle of her show at Radio City Music Hall. After belting out some songs from the couch she went behind the partition to change into her second dress of the night. The dress was purposely low cut to reveal a black leather bra she was wearing. Unfortunately, she was in such a rush to get back out on stage, she sang an entire song unaware that she was “sticking out” from the bottom of the bra. When she was done with the song, an audience member pointed out the wardrobe malfunction to her. One of Idina’s people rushed out to help her tuck everything in. As this was happening, Idina looked up and realized this was all on display on the two jumbo screens set up for those with far away seats. Although she said this was embarrassing, she ended the moment with “F**k it, they’re real.”
Idina ended the night with an a cappella version of “For Good” from Wicked (with no microphone) and the song that every little girl in attendance was waiting all night to hear, “Let It Go” from Frozen. Idina then left the stage but came out for a three song encore which included a song from If/Then, “Every Time We Say Goodbye”, and “I’ll Be Seeing You”.
This one night concert was a treat for every Idina Menzel fan, whether you’ve followed her from Day 1 or you’re a recent fan who has come to know her from her recent roles in Glee and Frozen. Make no mistake, this woman can sing! She’s the real deal. I’ve included video of Idina singing Creep and Let It Go. I wish my seats were closer so that you can actually see her. If you search on YouTube, I’m sure you’ll find more videos from the show.