So this Christmas I went to see Kate Rusby at the Barbican, I went with my fiancé as an early Christmas present. It was actually he, who introduced me to her music, the first album I heard was Awkward Annie, then on it was just easy listening all the way.
The performance was to start at 7:30, we were running late due to a train incident earlier that day. Luckily we managed to make it for a drink before the show started, the stage was set out quite beautifully. In the left-hand corner was a reindeer with Christmas light adorning its antlers, rope light bulbs set out in a rustic style that reminded me of a folk festival. Background lights were designed like snowflakes, when they ran it created the illusion of snow falling.
Kate came out on time, with a cup of tea in her hand. The crowd erupted into cheer and claps for the folk artist, in a sparkly star black dress, the whimsical Rusby bowed to the audience thanking them for the warm welcome. The evening began with a traditional song but with Kate’s northern twist, using her stories and research to present a new musical tone for the evening. Each new song or historical song was reinvented or an alternative version, giving us all an entertaining evening, sharing her stories of their travels.
I have a few favourites from the new album Angels of Men which are The Holly and The Ivy, Let it snow, Let the bells ring and Big Brave Bill saves Christmas. The album is quite refreshing, using various folk instruments and dramatic sounds to really enhance the song, it was beautiful to hear live.
Even the band had a period where they got the play their own music, showing off their musicality. One even dedicated to Kate herself by her husband, it was quite romantic, although slightly overlooked by the guys dressed up as shepherds and stars.
It really was a night to remember, ending perfectly with We Wish You a Merry Christmas, enticing the audience to sing along.