Live review: Christina Perri, The Fillmore (8/7/2015)

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Christina Perri
The Fillmore
Aug. 7, 2015
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Christina Perri quite literally bounced onto the stage Friday night at the Fillmore. “I apologize for that dance I just did,” Perri said, after throwing her arms up and doing a mini jig on stage, “but I’m just so excited!”

In person, Perri's personality is probably the last thing you’d expect. if you’ve ever heard her breakout heartbreak ballad “Jar of Hearts,” the single that shot her into the mainstream music scene after being played on So You Think You Can Dance, then the ray of sunshine that she is would surprise you. She’s like a walking contradiction.

Even as she launched into her 90-minute set full of songs about heartbreak and loneliness she never dropped her mega-watt smile; opening with the jaunty “Shot Me in the Heart,” Perri grabbed a tambourine and danced around the stage, setting an unexpected tone for anyone expecting to see her mournful work personified.

It’s an odd sight to see a singer rouse a whole room to singing along with glee to a song like “The Lonely” and it’s doubtful that anyone could do it like Perri. The audience responds to her enthusiasm in kind, and a large part of it, despite her obvious adoration for the crowd, is her message of hope. Before singing “Burning Gold,” for example, she explained to the audience the inspiration behind the song was choosing to not give up after picking up and moving to Los Angeles to follow her dream.

“The hardest thing is to not give up,” she said, “So many people just give up. But I’m here to tell you that if you try, if you keep going, magical things can happen.”

She’s just a joy to watch; her energy is infectious and reflects in her every action, with every note she sang, every movement as she danced on stage, and even in her rapid fire transitions between playing the lounge singer, to the piano player, to rocking out on the acoustic guitar. Perri’s got an insanely powerful voice house inside such a tiny woman, and while her recordings are beautiful, it’s her live performance that gives her the chance to shine. By all means buy her music, but if given the opportunity? Go see her in person. She’s a force of nature on that stage.

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