The first time I saw Diana Ross perform I was in high school. Her set at the Universal Amphitheater back then ended with an enthralling version of “Reach Out and Touch (Somebody’s Hand).” I was so amped up that when the concert ended I ran down the hill at Universal singing the song at the top of my lungs. People in cars driving down were rolling down their windows to touch my hand; meeting up with my friends at the bottom of the hill, they thought for sure I was crazy, but we had a fabulous time! Friday night’s show at the Hollywood Bowl was reminiscent of that high school evening. Older, less able to walk down a big hill much less run down one, but nevertheless once again feeling amped up by what a fabulous singer Diana Ross truly is – The Boss.
Diana is a “natural treasure,” an “international treasure” and “her mom,” proclaimed daughter Tracee Ellis Ross, who identified herself as an “Emmy Award Nominated Actress” [for television show “Black-ish”] while introducing Diana Ross.
Music was a remix up of some of her old favorites such as “Can’t Hurry Love,” “I’m Coming Out,” some from “Lady Sings the Blues” movie, and hits by others, such as “I will Survive” (Donna Summers). Diana asked, “Do you remember this song?” before belting out “Stop in the Name of Love.” One man in the audience near me proclaimed, “This is the soundtrack of my youth.” The audience was a blend of older people and also young hipsters, both groups excited to be able to see Diana in person.
The opening act was Naturally 7, a 6-man a cappella group – all voice, no instruments. Close your eyes and you would never know there weren’t drums, guitars or trumpets; as the woman in the box next to me exclaimed, “amazing.”
Flags at the bowl were at half mast, to honor the dead resulting from various world crises from Nice to Turkey happening at the time.
No press photos of artists were allowed, but I hoped I captured the spirit of the evening through photos of the audience.