I don't think it ever occurred to me that Diana Ross could actually be a real human being--how could a woman of such flawless elegance and beauty ever be? For as long as I've been a fan, Diana has always been a fantasy. If you only knew how many times I have fantasized about being caught in a wind and rain storm, wearing a sequined leotard and a sheer cape. But last night at Montreal's Place des Arts, as I sat in my third row seat, three feet away from the center of the stage, the fantasy of Diana Ross was about to become reality. In just a few moments the lights would go down, the band would start to play, and Diana, off stage, would start to sing "I'm Coming Out." I was emotionally overwhelmed before the legend even appeared on stage.
For her glorious entrance, the diva wrapped herself in a big red, chiffon poof, which she eventually tore away to reveal a floor length, sequined gown with bat-wing sleeves. Throughout the course of the night, as she sang hit after hit after hit--"Baby Love," "You Can't Hurry Love," "Stop! In The Name of Love," "The Boss," "Touch Me in the Morning," "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" and a dozen more--she changed costumes four times, each gown covered top to bottom in sequins. I noticed delightedly that with each costume change, Ms. Ross also changed earrings. Each pair of earrings perfectly matched the gown they were paired with--now that is a commitment to glamour. That is the mark of a true diva legend glamazon. It's all about the details, honey. And being so close, I could see all the details! I was so close I could see the veins in her hands and her glitter nail polish... I could see a loose thread hanging from the first dress she wore... I could see the sensible, silver platform shoes she wore, which were the only things that hinted at her age, as they betrayed style for comfort. I was so close I could almost reach out and touch! When she sang "Upside Down," I danced like the disco dolly I am, and she noticed and grooved with me for a moment I will remember forever.
From the moment she entered the stage until she took her last bow, I was mesmerized. And I was also emotional. I found myself welling up with tears at different moments in the show. I was emotional because being in such close proximity to greatness fills me with a kind of inspiration and awe that is simply overwhelming. I was emotional because Diana was more magical than I even dreamed she could be. Her energy is pure joy, pure light and I could feel my heart and the hearts of everyone there bursting with that joy--a palpable, profound, powerful joy that only an artist of real depth and authenticity can radiate. And that's what made me emotional most of all--the reality of Diana Ross, the realness of her spirit, her beauty and her artistry. Hers is an artistry that just doesn't exist any more. And that is also something that makes me emotional, but I won't go there now. Instead, I will spend the day basking in the glory of the sweetest love hangover... in the afterglow of DIANA ROSS!