Biografia Elton John

Biografia Elton John
A trajetória da carreira de Elton John em capitulos

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domingo, 2 de maio de 2010

Elton John at Covelli Centre

"Elton John at Covelli Centre"

Sir Elton makes memories for a packed downtown house

Published: Sun, May 2, 2010 @ 12:01 a.m.By ED RUNYAN
Sir Elton John, the man who made so many memories during his 40-year career with his chart-topping music and showmanship, made unforgettable memories Saturday night for 7,000 area fans packed into the Covelli Centre downtown.
With hits like “Rocket Man,” “Bennie and the Jets,” “Levon,” and “Philadelphia Freedom,” the English performer lit up the stage with his five-member band for his Greatest Hits Live show.
John is one of the top-selling solo artists of all time, behind only Elvis and the Beatles, according to Billboard.
He drew fans from as far away as Atlanta at costs ranging from $39 to nearly $200 for a ticket purchased on eBay or from a broker.
In the hours leading up to the 8 p.m. show, downtown was brimming with couples, sisters and friends, many of them accompanied by a daughter or son who learned to appreciate John’s music second-hand.
The majority of concert-goers were in their 40s or 50s — old enough to remember his energetic early days. Sixteen members of the Fackelman and Luther families of Girard prepared for the show at Buffalo Wild Wings on Wick Avenue several hours beforehand, explaining that John’s music has been passed from generation to generation.
“I’ve wanted to see Elton John for a long time — since I was young,” Michelle Luther said. “My 16-year-old daughter Emily loves him. I think she was born in the wrong era,” she said. “She learned the words to “Tiny Dancer” when she was 2 years old — word for word.”
“I just love his songs,” Emily agreed. “I’ve been listening to them since I was born.”
Michelle Luther’s brother-in-law, Steve Fackelman, said he and his wife, Carol, were persistent the morning the tickets went on sale and worked their computers, succeeding in getting six tickets each. All the tickets were sold in 30 minutes, but after seven minutes, only single tickets were left, Fackelman said. Ed and Nancy Baran of Boardman didn’t score any of the $39, $89 or $139 Ticketmaster tickets online, but got two tickets behind the stage from a broker for $111 apiece.
“We are so excited. It’s probably my fourth or fifth time,” Nancy said of John concerts, dating back to her high school days in the 1970s.
“He was just different — Liberace outfits — but his music was incredible. Everybody was listening to him,” Ed Baran said.
Dortheann Metzinger of suburban Atlanta came back to her hometown of Canfield this weekend with her boyfriend, Alex Hutchins, to stay with her parents, Robert and Ann Metzinger, and attend the concert.

Her friend from St. Charles School in Boardman, Cris McFerren, called her on the phone when she learned that Elton John was coming to Youngstown.
“I called her up and said ‘You won’t believe it,’” McFerren said. “Dorothe introduced me to Elton when we were kids” around 1976, McFerren said.
“I’ve been a fan since about age 10,” said Dortheann, a 1982 Youngstown Cardinal Mooney graduate. “It’s one of my lifetime list of people to see.”
One of her fondest memories of those days is a particular pair of Captain Fantastic socks she wore with her Catholic school uniform.
The socks showed John as Captain Fantastic from the 1975 album Captain Fantastic and the Dirt Brown Cowboy. They depicted John wearing big glasses and hat, and the socks showed a colorful keyboard.
“It was our only form of expression,” Metzinger said of being allowed to wear any kind of socks they wanted.
This is the first time Metzinger has attended an Elton John concert, even though John has a home in Atlanta and has played concerts there.
“I know I’d never get to see him in Atlanta,” she said, explaining that with 4 million people in the Atlanta area, tickets are hard to get. John Klimko of Poland said the concert helps put Youngstown on the map.
“To have someone that well-known in our town. This is good for the town,” he said. “I think we need more of this kind of thing. People will come from Akron and Cleveland. People will come.”
Sandy Durbin of Willowick, a Cleveland suburb, said she has seen Bruce Springsteen, Fleetwood Mac and Pat Benatar in recent years.
“I think it’s important to see the music icons while we still have them, and we’re going to see them in a 7,000-seat arena. It’ll be intimate. It’ll be good,” she said.
“I saw the tickets come up on Ticketmaster for Youngstown, and I was thinking THE Elton John?”
Sheryl Carabbia of Struthers, who was with about five coworkers and friends, said, “There’s a few things you just want to go out and do, and this is one of them.”
Paul Handza, 22, of Pittsburgh, came to the show with several relatives, including his mother, Lynn Handza of Ridgway, Pa., which is near the Allegheny National Forest.
“I’m surprised. It’s really pretty here,” Lynn Handza said as she sat at a table on the sidewalk in front of Rosetta Stone on Federal Street before the concert.
“I’m very interested in architecture, and there is some really nice architecture here,” Paul Handza said.

How Covelli landed the Rocket Man

Published: Fri, April 30, 2010 @ 12:10 a.m.

photo Covelli Centre Executive Director Eric Ryan
How did little old Covelli Centre, with its 7,000-seat capacity, manage to land an Elton John concert?
It was a combination of business connections, the arena’s reputation ... and being in the right place at the right time.
Talk of bringing Elton to Youngstown actually began more than two years ago, said Eric Ryan, center director.
“I had been working on it since right about the time I got the job here [November 2007], or at least discussing it,” Ryan said. He first met with John’s representatives at a concert convention in California two years ago.
But it was only a few months ago that Saturday’s concert changed from a some-day goal to a distinct possibility.
“I was on a conference call with SMG and [representatives from] some other buildings and they were discussing the Elton John-Billy Joel tour that was then going on,” Ryan said. “They were saying Elton was going to take some dates on his own and play some secondary markets to leave the major markets still in play. Now that being said, we still didn’t meet the criteria. But I got on the horn and made some calls and we put together a plan with SMG and some other SMG buildings.” Covelli Centre is co-managed by SMG, an international arena-management company, and JAC Management, which is owned by Ryan. The city of Youngstown owns the facility.
Covelli Centre has the lowest capacity of the SMG-managed arenas that got Elton, but other factors worked in its favor.
“Thank goodness Elton loved the idea of playing a more intimate place,” Ryan said. “Elton doesn’t need to play Youngstown, but it was up to him and his management to say they’d play here. It went back and forth. I wanted it to happen, but I was afraid we didn’t have enough seats. But we worked out a deal and then [concert promoter] Live Nation got involved, and we finished it.”
In addition to the relationship with SMG, the arena’s history with major concerts played a role in landing the Elton John show. “[Covelli Centre] has a track record. We can say we put butts in the seats. We sold out Journey and Carrie Underwood and people are starting to notice.”
Ryan said he felt certain the Youngstown market would support an Elton John concert, even with its high ticket prices ($39, $89 and $139), and he was right.
When tickets went on sale March 12, ticket-selling Web sites got 13,000 hits in the first three minutes for the show — and each buyer could have bought up to six tickets. Buyers were mainly from the Northeast Ohio-Western Pennsylvania region, said Ryan.
“We are so fortunate; it’s unbelievable,” said Ryan. “I wake up every morning and ask my wife, ‘Is Elton still coming?’”

1 Avril 2010 -  CultureMusique

Folie des grandeurs
Elton John Chichen Itza

Elton John donnait un concert au Mexique, face aux pyramides Chichen Itza. L'événement a provoqué la colères des mayas.

Elton John concert banned in Egypt for comments on gay
Egypt's musician's union on Sunday rejected plans for British singer Elton John to perform a private concert scheduled for May 18, because of his "controversial remarks attacking religions".
"How do we allow a gay, who wants to ban religions, claimed that the prophet Eissa (Jesus) was gay and calls for Middle Eastern countries to allow gays to have sexual freedom," head of the Egyptian Musician Union, Mounir al-Wasimi told DPA.
The pop superstar, 63, stirred controversy after his remarks to US celebrity news magazine Parade in February, where he said "Try being a gay woman in the Middle East - you're as good as dead", after saying he believed Jesus was "gay".
Al-Wasimi said that he has begun coordinating with security bodies to ban John's concert, saying that the union is the only body "authorised to allow performances by foreign singers in Egypt".
In 2008, Elton John performed in the United Arab Emirates to a crowd of more than 13,000 fans.
Although some human rights activists claim homosexuality is spreading in Egypt, the topic is a taboo in the country. In 2008, a lesbian scene in an Egyptian film set in Cairo's slums caused uproar.
In 2001, police raided a "gay" floating disco in Cairo. Around 20 of the 52 arrested were jailed for "habitual debauchery" and "obscene behaviour".

Elton John Jams for Thousands at Final US Tour Stop

Sir Elton John has the energy to do more in a day than most people past the ripe age of 63. In fact, he does more than most touring musicians 40 years his junior: he plays a three-hour live show. At the final U.S. date of his 2010 Greatest Hits Live tour Saturday night in Youngstown, OH, the Rocket Man even had the energy to dance atop his piano.

Elton John's most recent string of tour dates focused primarily on arenas and stadiums in smaller American cities, such as Youngstown's Covelli Centre. The tour featured the famed English pianist with full band in tow, playing his biggest hits to crowds hovering around 7,000, a modest amount for a performer of John's notoriety. Not only were there no opening acts, but on Saturday, John and band kicked off their set one minute early, starting with the song 'Funeral For a Friend/Love Lies Bleeding,' the opener off 'Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,' before ripping into 24 others and a brief encore.

Despite Elton's initial punctuality, he and his band had no qualms about taking their time, transforming several hits into improvisational jam sessions, most notably 'Levon' and 'Rocket Man.' The performances were interspersed with Elton's generous thanking and gesturing to the crowd.

John also chose to play a new song, 'You're Never Too Old,' which he introduced it by asking his fans not to "run for the exits." The song premiered at a March 2010 show and will be featured on Elton's October release, which finds him working with legend Leon Russell, producer T-Bone Burnett, Neil Young and others.

John's new song was not the only surprise in store for Ohio fans Saturday night. After truly raucous renditions of 'Benny and the Jets,' 'The Bitch Is Back' -- with the word "Bitch" flashing on a jumbotron behind the stage -- and several other top hits, Elton and company left the stage. But the singer, clad in a black coat featuring jewels and an embroidery of his own likeness, returned several minutes later. He signed nearly 25 autographs for fans crowded around the stage before playing 'Your Song,' followed by 'Circle Of Life' from Disney's 'The Lion King.'

Elton let the crowd know that he does not often perform 'Circle Of Life' live. The pianist even seemed a bit emotional before playing the song, saying that working on 'The Lion King' soundtrack "changed the direction of [his] career" because he "got the opportunity to do more than just make records and tour." Fans certainly left the Covelli Centre feeling "the love tonight" rather than having any inkling Elton's so-called diva image.

Jerome Elias Saleeby, 50: Activist and board member for the Elton John AIDS Foundation
By Rick Badie

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Eli Saleeby's  face flashed across the screen during the annual dinner of the Human Rights Campaign, held Saturday at the Hyatt Regency.

The dinner raises money to support the mission of  HRC, a civil rights organization that advocates on behalf of lesbians, gays, bisexual and transgendered citizens. It tries to secure equal rights at the local, state and federal levels.
Mr. Saleeby deemed its causes dear. Other activists say he was the first person from Atlanta to serve on the national board of  directors for  the Human Rights Campaign, based in Washington, D.C. He also sat on its board of governors.
The North Carolina native dedicated his life to organizations and events that promoted and advocated equal rights, "but it was not just for gays and lesbians," said Clara L.Fryer, a friend of Mr. Saleeby's since the late 1980s.
"I would say Eli was about fairness for the underdog," she continued. "He cared for the underdog and worked for folks who aren't as blessed as he was."
On April 23, Jerome Elias "Eli" Saleebydied at Grady Hospital from complications of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He was 50. A memorial service will be held at 6 p.m. May 11 at 701 Sherwood Rd., a private residence in Atlanta.
After high school, Mr. Saleeby attended East Carolina University, where he befriended Jim Bierma, also a Carolina native. They moved to Atlanta in the late 1970s to attend college. Mr. Saleeby earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from Georgia State University in 1982.
After working in banking, he became a real estate agent for RE/MAX Greater Atlanta and, later, specialized in high-end sales. Also, he and business partners would buy properties, then remodel and sell them.
In the 1980s,  the AIDS epidemic and HIV-related issues spread fear and death in the city. Mr. Saleeby and Mr. Bierma saw friends get sick and die. They got involved.
"Eli ended up taking a two-pronged approach," Mr. Bierma said. "He'd try to affect change on a political level and try to get grassroots funding. He was always consistent and always talked about having dialogue. He wanted to communicate, to talk, and make sure the agenda occurred."
Mr. Saleeby was a founding member of Georgia Equality. He was a board member for the Elton John AIDS Foundation from 1992 to 2005. John Scott of Cameron, N.C., served as the foundation's executive director during the movie buff's tenure.
"Not only did he help guide the governance of the organization, but he reminded all of us of the importance to leave a message of hope," Mr. Scott said. "He was a staunch believer in encouraging hope and awareness."
Years ago,  Mr. Saleeby had served as co-chair of the committee that plans the annual dinner for the local  chapter of the Human Rights Campaign. At Saturday's dinner, a moment of silence was held to honor the crusader.
"Several folks got tears in their eyes because they did not know," said Mr. Bierma,  his friend.  "He was healthy not too long ago."
Additional survivors include his father, Elias Saleeby of Raleigh, N.C.; and a brother, James Menefee of  Richmond, Va.

(Poem To Life - feat. John Mahon)
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13. Outro

Previews in:

Costumes for Elton John ballet put the emphasis on outrageous fun

Ballet dancer Kelley McKinlay at the Nat Christie Centre in Calgary. 
He's playing Elton John in the Alberta Ballet's upcoming production, 
"Love Lies Bleeding".

Alberta Ballet dancer Kelley McKinlay at the Nat Christie Centre in Calgary. He's playing Elton John in the Alberta Ballet's upcoming production, "Love Lies Bleeding".

Photograph by: Dean Bicknell, Calgary Herald

By Bob Clark, Calgary HeraldMay 2, 2010

Read more:

Once the curtain goes up on Alberta Ballet's Love Lies Bleeding on Thursday, don't be surprised if the imaginatively outrageous garb worn by the dancers to convey the look and feel of the world of pop icon Sir Elton John reminds you of something straight out of Lewis Carroll-meets-Barbarella-meets-A Clockwork Orange.
Add to that the influence both of Jean Cocteau-type surrealism and the brilliant unconventionality of that late enfant terrible of the fashionista set, Alexander McQueen, and you have an idea of what went into the concept dreamed up for the million-dollar show by costume designer Martine Bertrand.
The effervescent Bertrand recalls being in England for several months with her film production designer husband and thinking she saw the "Mad Hatter everywhere," when the Elton-inspired call came from Alberta Ballet artistic director Jean Grand-Maitre more than a year ago.
It couldn't have come at a better time, she says, "because I had a lot of things in my mind and I realized that in this ballet I could put everything -- my fantasy, my 'crazy thing' I have inside -- on the costumes. It's the first time I've had that (opportunity) with Jean," adds Bertrand, who has designed costumes for Grand-Maitre ballets for the past 16 years.
After developing her design concept by researching the music, life and times of Elton John for four months, mainly through photos of the pop star -- "My first inspiration was Elton in the 1970s, and a photo of him playing for the first time in Dodger Stadium in L.A. has inspired me a lot," she says -- Bertrand chose the Banff Centre as the facility to assemble the team of experts from Europe and across Canada to carry out the various cutting, sewing, dyeing and accessorizing procedures necessary to have her costume sketches turned into a reality. (Eighty per cent of the fabrication and costume-building took place at the Centre, while Alberta Ballet itself accounted for making the unitards worn by many of the dancers.)
With work on the costumes still in the very early stages, Bertrand recalls telling the Banff workshop crew, by way of a pep talk disguised as a credo, 'OK, I design the costumes, but in these costumes I want to have happiness and play. So go play.'
"And when I said that, they had fun -- and you see it in the costumes," says Bertrand, who lives in the Montreal-South Shore community of Longeue. "You see the happiness.
"And you see the happiness when the dancer wears those costumes."
Among those convened at the Centre to bring three-dimensional life to Bertrand's detailed sketches was Toronto milliner Leslie Norgate, who has spent 21 years in the business of making hats for use at the Stratford Festival, the Canadian Opera Company, the Metropolitan Opera and American Ballet Theatre, and several Lion King shows, among others.
Hats. Where would the whole Elton John stage persona be without . . . hats?
On paper, at least, Love Lies Bleeding calls for some of the most elaborately outlandish toppers and miscellaneous head coverings seen on the Canadian stage.
"The sketches show you everything," says Norgate.
But not how to make something like a "chandelier" hat.
That's where a taste for experimentation, a knowledge of unconventional materials, and a lot of experience came in.
"(The chandelier part) is made out of a material called 'Lexan' (used in motorcycle windshields and riot police shields)," Norgate says. "It looks like Plexiglas, but it's much stronger, much more flexible."
Adding another level of wonder to the elaborate headgear is the fact that it actually lights up, or at least appears to.
"Through illusion," Norgate says, adding that there are no lights on the hat only crystals or tiny mirrors, and big crystal "jewels" in the case of the chandelier "lights."
"Use the most powerful lights you have, the stage lights, and shine them on the hat -- and you create the illusion it's lit up."
Says Bertrand, "I wanted to give the lighting designer a place to play, too."
She laughs. "I designed that for everybody -- to have fun!"

Débora Aromatis Machado e Robson Vianna.

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