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Concert Review: Jesse McCartney makes a girl's night on Orlando stage
Somewhere in Orlando, there is a girl named Kara who might still be hyperventilating.
The Jesse McCartney fan found herself on stage during the pop singer's impressive production in front of a sparse crowd at Hard Rock Live on Thursday night.
It's too bad more fans didn't turn out, because the 16-song set was entertainment at its finest. Not to mention a spicy opening act from Anjulie, who commanded the stage beyond her years.
But, it was McCartney's night. The combination of solid vocals, intricate detail in dance moves and the constant interaction with his fans reminded one of a music video, and not a guy standing at a mic and belting away.
That's just not McCartney's style.
The New York native brought out plenty of hits from his current album "Departure," including 2008 chart-topper "Leavin," "How Do You Sleep," and "It's Over." All of them left the place bumping, for young and old alike. Many of the parents in the room looked as though they had been dragged there by their teenage daughters during the hourlong intermission (definitely the low point of the show
don't do that again, Mr. McCartney), but many of them seemed to respond to McCartney's up-tempo beats.
He also grabbed them with some oldies, including a great rendition of "Beautiful Soul."
And, as the night wore on, McCartney started pulling out more tricks. His backup singers got the crowd going with Rick Springfield's "Jessie's Girl" (nice touch) as McCartney made a wardrobe change backstage. He returned to get the girls in the front row in a frenzy as he teased them about bringing one of them up on stage.
And Kara was the lucky lady.
While making her way to a seat in the middle of the stage, McCartney asked her to introduce herself and then retreated backward to the other side of the stage. Eyes squarely on Kara, he began to walk slowly toward her, crooning at her and leaving her shaking and crying. He took it all in stride and wound up on his knees with her hands messing up his hair. He then got her up off the seat and danced tightly with her before escorting her off the stage.
Act or not, McCartney had every woman in that place wishing she could take Kara's spot.
Acting is something that McCartney cast aside to complete this tour, backing out of a deal to play the role of Fire Nation's prince Zuko in M. Night Shyamalan's upcoming film, "The Last Airbender." McCartney said his tour dates conflicted with martial-arts boot camp that the cast was required to attend.
By the looks of Thursday's performance, acting isn't something he left behind, but something he is using to create an experience that should bring more people back to see his next Orlando show.