THERE was an element of not knowing what to expect from this show.
Four actors from the hit TV series Nashville, a fictional drama about singers trying to make it in the home of country music, were appearing live on stage to perform songs from the programme.
Reviews from prior dates on the tour had been good, but would this seem like a proper concert or be a little too rehearsed and glossy?
Any concerns were immediately washed away when Chris Carmack, who plays gay cowboy Will Lexington, took to the stage first, playing with a backing band consisting of some of Nashville’s finest musicians. An accomplished guitarist and singer (and, we would see later, proficient on the saxophone, too) he set the bar high.
Penzance-born Sam Palladio, who plays Gunnar Scott, showed he was a solid songwriter in his own right, especially with Wake Me Up In Nashville, a sweet true story based on a tale his 94-year-old grandpa told him before Sam made the move to Tennessee a few years ago.
In fact, all four were given the opportunity to show they were just as gifted at songwriting as their screen alter-egos, with a number of their own songs peppering the nearly three-hour show.
Pixie-like Clare Bowen, Scarlett O’Connor in the series, had the crowd close to tears as she explained how she had just returned from her native Australia to donate bone marrow to her brother, who is battling cancer, and then fought back her own tears to perform a song dedicated to him.
But the audience favourite was undoubtedly Charles Esten. The show’s Deacon Claybourne looked genuinely delighted at the reception he received and raced through the crowd meeting his fans during a couple of the songs.
He then led a mass sing-along of one of the show’s staples, A Life That’s Good, to end the night on a high.
The show sold out in minutes and after this reception they’re likely to be back – but next time they might need to book the higher-capacity Hydro to cope with demand.
Popular TV show cancellation will become the norm if ratings success continues to be ignored
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