Barbra Streisand Sublime in Concert at Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center

Barbra Streisand in concert at Philadelphia's Well Fargo Center


When Barbra Streisand opened her "Back to Brooklyn" concert tour in Philadelphia on Monday night at the Wells Fargo Center, it was both a celebration of her past and a reach forward into her future. Not just because she said she refused to call this run of dates a goodbye to live events (she liked Philly so much she said that she might like to “start all of her farewell tours here”), but rather because she lent a large portion of the show’s three hour time to her son Jason Gould’s singing debut as well as to the young Italian pop-era trio, Il Volo.

While I can’t say the show was perfect, there were certainly perfect moments that made me wish that I was heading to Brooklyn’s Barclay Center to catch the next show. Why wouldn’t you? Up until this tour, Streisand has only played 81 shows since 1963. The rarity alone makes it a worthwhile ticket.

Barbra Streisand
Her run at the Leonard Bernstein songbook with effortless takes on “Somewhere” (from West Side Story) and “Some Other Time”, her quietly flickering “Being Good Isn't Good Enough (from Hallelujah, Baby!), and her dramatic full-throated mash up of Jule Styne Broadway classics “Rose’s Turn/”Some People” (from Gypsy) and “Don’t Rain on My Parade” (from Funny Girl) were “gawgeous” in Streisand lingo. While’s Streisand’s tribute to her late duet partner Donna Summer with the four-on-the-floor “Enough is Enough” was fun, her covers of classics from longtime friend and collaborator Marvin Hamlisch on the dreamy “Through the Eyes of Love” and “The Way We Were” were exquisite. And together with trumpeter Chris Botti, Streisand turned the standard bearing medley of “What’ll I Do”/”My Funny Valentine” into something sublime.

With age, Streisand has only gotten better.

Barbra Streisand backstage at Philadelphia's Wells Fargo Center
Photos courtesy Russell James

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Posted on Wednesday, October 10, 2012 10:45 AM