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I'm a fan of Glee, the now infamour TV show based on the students of McKinley High School in Lima, Ohio, that has become a global sensation in its 3 series so far. Last year saw the release of Glee: The 3D Concert and while I didn't have a chance to go and see it in the cinema (I don't enjoy going alone!), I was excited to see it finally on the TV last night. I don't really know what I was expecting - a movie length episode of Glee or just a DVD of the concert tour that they did throughout 2011? Well, it turns out that it is a long concert performance, with some backstage skits thrown in too, and some real-life documentary style videos too, so something for everyone.
Glee: The 3D Concert features all of the stars from the TV show doing what they do best - singing. They are on stage and are playing the character they do on the show, and sing the songs made famous on that very show too. As well as the performances on stage, we get to see backstage shots of the characters being made up to go on-stage, and a bit of banter too which was quite funny too, and my personal favourite had to be Darren Criss as Blaine, he was really funny! Lea Michele as Rachel does a good job too, especially reacting to the news that her idol Barbra Streisand was going to watch her. I don't think there was enough Finn or Kurt in these parts though which was a shame as I know both of these have such big fanbases, Kurt in particular.
Now, onto the singing. It's obvious that there are parts of it which weren't live (Brittany's performance of 'I'm A Slave 4 U" was cringingly obvious), but for the most part most of it sounded live and the cast do an amazing job. They are very fit to dance and sing as they do, and it highlights the talents of the real vocal powerhouses (Criss, Michele, Riley) to hit and hold the notes that they do, Michele in particular is outstanding. We see many famous songs from the opening number 'Don't Stop Believing', to other hits like 'Firework', 'Valerie', 'Jessie's Girl' and a wonderful version by Kurt of 'I Wanna Hold Your Hand' (100% live). A few of the songs I didn't recognise so much, but it didn't spoil my enjoyment at all, and the best thing is that the cast really look like they are having fun performing them.
Gwyneth Paltrow makes a guest performance as Spanish teacher Holly Holiday, a character she performed in some of the show's second season. I have to see this seemed totally lip-synched, and didn't really add anything to the concert at all. I didn't especially warm to her character on the show, so I'm not sure why she was needed at the concert when most people went to see the main Glee club stars. I really enjoyed the shots of the Glee fans that speak on their way to the concert, telling us why they love Glee, favourite characters, and other things about the show, they're just fun and build up the excitement for everyone watching, and I'm sure everyone watching it felt the same queueing up to watch it!
The real-life videos shown in between some of the performers are quite touching too. They feature 3 people going through challenging periods in their lives - there's Jenna, a dwarf who is going to her prom, Trenton who was outed as gay by mean kids at high school and a young lady suffering from Asperger's syndrome. Each of them have had their problems, but have used Glee as an inspiration to not let it stop them being themselves and achieving their dreams, and I think for some people they are going to be quite inspiring... it certainly made me think about my so-called problems! A few of them went on a bit long but they were a nice touch.
Overall, I think this is a must-see for any Glee fans, and I'm sure they will love it. I'm a huge fan of the TV fan and really enjoyed watching this, and it was nice to see the actors performing these songs and having fun doing so, and hearing the best songs again too. The costumes used were bright and colourful, the music loud and the singing great - what more could you want really? As someone who never made it to a real Glee concert, it's nice to be able to see it for ourselves, and experience a bit of the fun. It looked like one big party, and made me quite envious of those who got to go! Huge credit to all the stars who sang brilliantly, and I think the performances that were done live were brilliant. Glee is a fab show to show everyone should get along, regardless of personal choices, circumstances, or prejudices, and anything like that promotes tolerance and acceptance gets a big thumbs up from me. Worth a watch.
Directed by Kevin Tanchaoren
Running Time: 84 minutes
Lea Michele ... Rachel
Cory Monteith ... Finn
Dianna Agron ... Quinn
Chris Colfer ... Kurt
Darren Criss ... Blaine
Kevin McHale ... Artie
Heather Morris ... Brittany
Amber Riley ... Mercedes
Naya Rivera ... Santana
Mark Salling ... Puck
Jenna Ushkowitz ... Tina
Harry Shum Jr. ... Mike
Chord Overstreet ... Sam
Ashley Fink ... Lauren
The DVD is available on Amazon.co.uk for £6.99. (June 2012 price).
Thank you very much for reading!