Pink Martini Perfection

Pink Martini AK

Last night I went to a concert and now I don’t want to work or have lunch, I just want to listen to Pink Martini.* And  I am: hooray for Pandora!

Last year Pink Martini shows sold out and it seemed like people were still talking about the performance weeks afterward. So when a friend suggested we attend, I jumped all over it!

Official Pink Martini description:

“The 9-piece band, featuring lead vocalist Storm Large, is a little orchestra unto itself that brilliantly blends elements of classical, jazz, Latin, cabaret, world music, film scores, and timeless pop. Their elegant arrangements have made this intoxicating retro-pop ensemble an audience favorite that sells out quickly.”

Here are some takeaways/impressions/thoughts from our evening:

  • The music is multi-lingual and ranges from French and Armenian to Japanese and English but somehow, Pink Martini made each song definitively their own.
  • The Center for Performing Arts is a great venue, but I couldn’t help imagine the performance somewhere more intimate, like the Fourth Avenue Theater in its heyday or even the Tap Root; the music makes you feel like you should be in dark, smokey room drinking Manhattans or working up a sweat on a crowded dance floor.
  • China Forbes is the lead singer, but Storm Large is filling in for the Alaska tour. She’s phenomenal – amazing voice, lots of range, and a shimmy that I will probably practice in the mirror and then give up because it’s the kind of thing that comes naturally or not at all…
  • Lyrics included a Turkish ditty about hearts that blacken without hope and an original encouraging a little tomato to hang on so it can get lucky enough to become ketchup on a hamburger. So random, but utterly delightful.
  • Pink Martini had great chemistry with the audience, which was fairly rowdy (in the best kind of way – it was a super appreciative and loving crowd) for an Anchorage Concert Association show. When Storm invited people up to the stage to swing dance, I cringed for a moment – what if no one went?** But then the stage filled up with all levels of dancers, from people who obviously knew the Lindy Hop to people who just wanted to sway back and forth with each other. All of them awesome.

The show ended with a gigantic conga line and Storm in bare feet. So so so much fun. If you’re going tonight, lucky you, and if not, there may be a couple tickets left – go grab ’em! And if you’re in Juneau tomorrow night, I highly recommend attending. I’ll even make it super easy for you: the show is at Centennial Hall and starts at 7:00; buy your tickets here for $45.



*Not true… I like lunch. And working. But, Pink Martini’s first hit, Sympathique, contains the lyrics, “I don’t want to work, No, I don’t want to have lunch, I only want to forget it and then smoke.” which just makes me laugh for some reason. So I ate lunch AND listened to Pink Martini today.

**I went to a country concert once where no one danced and the audience clapped politely after each song – a far cry from what I imagine the group was used too…

Author: Gretchen Fauske

I love Anchorage. I love what it is, what it's been, and what I dream it will be. I share my adventures with DJ (my husband), my fabulous family and friends, two frenchies named Grover and Teddy, and now, all of you. If you love Anchorage too, get in touch - guest posts are welcome!