Not a bad seat in the citadel at Julio Iglesias' first class concert in Amman
Julio Iglesias’ live performance Thursday at the Amman Citadel confirmed one more time the enduring appeal of Latin romantic tunes; even more so when delivered by a great, charming voice such as his.
The celebrated Spanish crooner had no trouble getting to the hearts of an audience estimated at more than 3,500 — a rather exceptional number at the Citadel.
All elements came nicely together to create a wonderful, most entertaining atmosphere and a delightful evening.
The highly professional accompanying musicians, the three backing vocal singers/dancers, the smart choice of songs and the quality of the sound, all blended naturally with the unique, distinguished voice of the great Iglesias to mesmerise the audience.
Few artists are as effective as Iglesias at singing romantic songs. Suffice it to see the reaction of the female part of the audience; clearly the majority that night.
Singing mainly in Spanish — understandably the language that suits him best — but also very well in English and by moments in French or Italian, Iglesias sailed with ease and genuine grace from “Amor” to “A medialuz”. “Natalie” was interpreted with the superb melody of the Russian folk song, “Dark eyes”.
On the French side, Iglesias did three covers of well-known songs: “Ne me quitte pas” (Jacques Brel), “J’aioublié de vivre" (Johnny Hallyday) and “Mamy blue” (Nicoletta). Other covers like “Caruso” (in Italian), “Always on my mind”, “My way”, “Crazy”, “Careless whispers”, “Falling in love with you” and “Fragile” came nicely to complement Iglesias’ usual Latin repertoire.
Tango music was particularly well represented with “La Cumparsita” and “A media Luz”, not only with the crooner’s fine singing, but also with first-class tango dancing by an elegant couple.
Iglesias managed to win the audience's participation on many an occasion and must have been happy to see how many knew the lyrics of his songs.
He delighted with his voice, his talent and with his stage presence. All the familiar traits were there, including the way Iglesias tends to close his eyes almost all the time when singing, as if in deep introspection.
Prior to the concert, Iglesias said he was looking forward to performing “at one of Jordan’s most prestigious archaeological sites, the Amman Citadel".
"And I can't wait to meet the Jordanian audience. See you, my friends, on August 22,” a statement from the organisers quoted him as saying.
With over 300 million album copies sold worldwide, Iglesias is ranked as one of the top-five best-selling artists of all time. Over the course of 45 years in the music business, he received hundreds of globally-acclaimed awards and accolades, and performed in front of more than 60 million fans at 5,000 concerts in 600 cities across the world, according to the statement.
The entire event was first-class, enhanced by the clear, beautiful summer sky over Amman. It came within the scope of the Amman Citadel Festival, organised by Friends of Jordan Festivals.
The festival continues through September 10, with concerts by the Palestine Youth Orchestra and members of the Amman Symphony Orchestra, Jordanian soprano Dima Bawab and the Choir of London, and Lebanese singer and oud player Marcel Khalife.