Believe it or not, I’ve never actually gone to a concert before: the combination of shy + introvert tends to mean that I hate anything having to do with crowds and loud noises. So I was initially hesitant when four of the Marylanders invited me to go with them because they had an extra ticket, but I figured, “Why not?” (That’s my general opinion regarding nearly everything I do here. I mean, I’m essentially in France because of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so I might as well make the most of it!)
The hours of 8-10:10 pm Saturday night marked my first concert, so I’m no longer an uncultured heathen. We saw Yannick Noah, who’s this famous cultural figure: a retired pro tennis player, he’s now a singer with an active presence in charity work. Since we didn’t have seats, we ended up standing in the mosh pit. Luckily, there wasn’t any actual moshing because there were small children attending the family-friendly concert.
Overall, the spectacle exceeded my expectations in a surprisingly pleasant way. It wasn’t deafeningly loud, even if it should’ve been labeled with “epilepsy warning” in giant red letters. Although I couldn’t understand three-fourths of what Yannick was singing, he had a very dynamic personality. His songs were mostly catchy, with the exception of a few somber ones, and the mood became quickly infectious; I found myself nodding or clapping to the beat.
Surprisingly, despite there being maybe 2000 people in the hall, I never felt claustrophobic—that is, until Yannick began moving around the room and walked right through the mosh pit. Then, everyone on the ground wanted to get as close to him as possible, and I found myself an unhappy ingredient of a human sandwich.
At the cost of sore feet, I suppose that I can now add Yannick Noah to the list of famous people I’ve seen in person. (It’s not a very long list. Before today, it only consisted of Jackie Chan and Ari Shapiro.)
These pictures aren’t very good, but they’ll have to do: