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[Gig Review] Lindsey Stirling Music Box Tour @ Kansas City, MO - June 2015


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As a fan of Lindsey Stirling's music (which consequently happened through a Covers vs. Original posting here in the Band a few years ago when Lindsey Stirling joined Pentatonix to Cover 'Radioactive' by Imagine Dragons), I was ecstatic upon learning that she would be coming to perform her Music Box Tour in Kansas City, MO! Despite now leaving nearly an hour and a half away from my hometown of KC,MO, I knew that I must go to this concert. Below outlines mine and my sister's (the concert was about a week before my sister's 21st birthday, so it was a perfect present for her!) experience from beginning to end.


After my first exposure to Lindsey's music, I soon found myself purchasing both of her albums and adding all of her YouTube music videos to a playlist. I now play her music in the background (in combination with The Piano Guys) during class, and my students love it! But back to the task at hand....her concert! The concert itself was an amazing show put on my Stirling, but the opening acts seemed long-winded and drawn out. Maybe that was because I was simply too eager to see Stirling perform, or maybe it was because the opening acts had a little to be wanted in terms of beat and vocals. Adding to my disappointment in the opening acts was the fact that we were unaware there would be any opening acts - our tickets merely stated the concert began at 8p.m. so we arrived at 6 p.m. thinking we were doing great on time. However, when we arrived, much of the theater was already filled and we were lucky to actually find seats! Once Stirling was on stage, there were so many standing around that, despite us having seats, we still had to stand to be able to see - especially since we were in the top balcony of the Uptown Theatre in Kansas City, MO.


I honestly do not recall the names of the opening acts, but I do know they continued to perform until almost 9p.m. With an obviously excited and eager crowd, Stirling opened her act with with Ascendance. The song began in complete darkness before the spotlight came on proving that she was finally on stage. While I was sad we were unable to sit close to the stage, I must still say that watching her play and dance with violin in hand was something I will never forget and something I would be more than happy to see again!


The remainder of the set-list went approximately as follows (her set totaled just over 2 hours of actual playing time, so I may miss some of the songs in this list!)

1. Ascendance - Great opening song that showcases all of Stirling's amazing abilities!

2. Moon Trance - This song shows off Stirling's spunky and creative side. The show involved using tombstone props, along with brilliant outfits for her backup dancers that only added to the effect of a creepy night-time walk under a full moon in a graveyard.

3. Master of Tides - If you want to feel like you are out on the raging ocean, this is the song for you!

4. Shadows - I'm usually annoyed by repetitious songs, but Shadows proves that some artists know how to do repetition well!

5. Elements - Listening to this song, you simply cannot underestimate the power of music to express emotions and feelings. You can feel the power of fire, the gentle caress of the water, the sturdiness of the earth, and the whimsy of the air - all intertwined into one!

6. Video Game Medley - this song only goes to prove that Lindsey Stirling is among the nerdiest geek of us all by combining music from Skyrim, Halo, Zelda, Assassin's Creed, and Dragon Age - and then immediately after performing admitting that she forgot several games!

7. Song of the Caged Bird - While I enjoy this song, it doesn't strike me as strongly as many of her others.

8. Transcendence - As a song from her first album, this composition goes to show how she felt herself going from one stage of life to another through her music. Beautiful piece!

9. Take Flight - Very similar in purpose and composition to "Transcendence" - Take Flight actually won an award for the YouTube Music Videos!

10. Crystallize - Before playing this song, Stirling had a video that showed the scientific aspect of the growth of crystals and how those crystals which were cared for grew bigger and more beautiful than those were not led her to write this song. Another great song, with a great meaning.

11. Roundtable Rival - This is arguably my favorite song by Lindsey Stirling - both in composition and performance. You can tell she is having a blast and this piece almost makes me want to dance (sometimes I do....but only when at home....and completely alone...haha!)

12. Stars Align - Another great song, but this one wins the award for having some of the all-time best dance moves of any song I've ever seen performed!

13. Beyond the Veil - This song always reminds me of Transcendence - and actually feels more like a song of transcending than the other!

14. Shatter Me - As far as I can tell, this has now become a pretty popular Lindsey Stirling song since she had the lead singer of Lzzy Hale perform the vocals for her - while at the concert we only got the pleasure of listening to the prerecorded audio of the vocals combined with the live addition of violin by Stirling. Regardless, it was still an amazing performance. This appeared to be her last song of the night, but the crowd insisted on shouting for "One more song" (Apparently the world as forgotten the word 'encore'?).



Encore - Phantom of the Opera Medley

This was an appropriate and perfect song to end the night with, especially since the ending of the Phantom Medley is the ending to the song "Music of the Night". In fact, the very last notes Stirling played go to the tune of: "It's over now, the Music of the Night." That little piece of music nearly gave me chills!


Overall, this was an amazing night and I am so thankful I was able to attend this concert! However, there are a few things I wish had gone differently:

  • Better communication by the ticket agency and show runners of when the opening acts began so we could have planned appropriately - I'm sure the information was out there, but since it was not listed on our tickets, I do not go looking for any other advice on what time to arrive.
  • A bigger venue would have been appropriate. It was a sold out concert and a lot of people were left standing. At one point, I had to assess where all of the fire exits were because I was so worried we wouldn't be able to get to one due to the size of the crowd.
  • A time limit to the opening acts. I went to watch Lindsey Stirling perform at 8p.m. - not an hour later. I understand giving opportunities to aspiring artists, but I also paid to see the lead artist at the listed time. Since I'm a morning person, it was hard to stay up that late - but definitely worth it.


A few things that I absolutely loved about the evening:

  • Lindsey Stirling has a great sense of humor and is honest and real about her person life, beliefs and especially about her music. She did previously discuss how she balances being in the public eye and her religious beliefs as  Mormon, but never did she make the night about religion. In a world where so much of what we hear is scripted or spun to mean something else entirely, it was refreshing to hear someone stick to what they believe and not let other's change her mind.
  • Simply watching her perform was awe-inspiring. When on stage, she is one with her music. Also, the fact that she composes the vast majority of this music on her own, and even does a vast majority of the choreography for both herself and her backup dancers - amazing!
  • Despite her late start, she played nearly all of the songs I have listened to on her albums. She came on stage just after 9p.m. and didn't walk off stage for the last time until nearly 11:45 or midnight - I know my sister and I did not get back to her place until after 1 a.m.! 

Overall Rating of Venue: 5/10


The chosen venue was much too small for the number of people that showed up. Yes, standing room only tickets were sold, but it was obvious that many more than expected wanted to be able to sit somewhere. Aside from the seating issue, the flow of people was also very frustrating both in arriving to the concert and in leaving. Uptown Theatre has been there for a while and is probably in need of a few safety updates at this point.


Overall Rating of Performers: 8/10 


Obviously my rating of the opening acts is pretty low - I would give them both a 3 or 4 out of 10. I was not even impressed enough with them to remember their names nor look them up later to see if there was anything else of their's I may like.


I would give Lindsey a 9.5 out of 10 for her concert performance. I take off that half point simply because I wish she had introduced some new compositions to her concerts that we had not heard before. Yes, seeing her perform live was worthy of a 10 out of 10, but to have heard her perform something new live for the first time...that would have been unforgettable!


After having a blast at this concert, I'm hoping I'll get to see her again and also enjoy other artists such as herself (i.e. - The Piano Guys who are coming to KC in March 2016).


Below are just a few of the music videos for songs she performed at the concert:

Beyond the Veil


Elements - I really do love this song of hers


Shatter Me


Roundtable Rival


Master of Tides




And the first song with her that I ever heard:




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Many of her songs on stage were nearly identical to the YouTube videos - especially Elements, Master of Tides, and Moon Trance - obviously without as many special effects. However, she did have a background screen on stage to enhance the show with visuals for those specific songs. There was so much amazing that happened that night, I could never encompass it all.

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