Tag Archives: UK Tour 2014

50 Shades of Boe

Back in July 2014 I posted 40 reasons to love Alfie Boe – another blog post mentioning 50 shades was recently suggested so here is 50 Shades of Boe…or 50 reasons to love Alfie!

Don’t forget to share everywhere so everyone else can also be Boe’d!

1. This is his most famous song – do you need another reason to love Alfie?

2. Nick Jonas’s (Marius in 25th Les Mis) brother Joe was in La Boheme on Broadway with alfie

3. Alfie hails from Fleetwood, Lancashire (although he was born in Blackpool in 1973).

4. Alfie is the youngest of nine siblings (4 boys and 5 girls) born to Alfred and Pat.

5. Alfie loves cooking and once considered becoming a chef (although he did once cut his finger on live TV!)

6. Other career changes considered include a personal trainer for the Salt Lake City police force.

7. Alfie is a Lyric Tenor which means his vocal range (excluding falsetto) is approximately the C one octave below middle C (C3) to the D one octave above middle C (D5) with the ability to extend a little to either side.

8. Alfie played Jean ValJean in the 25th Anniversary Les Miserables concert and at the Queens Theatre for 5 months in 2011 – but you all knew that one right?

9. When playing JVJ as The Mayor in Les Mis, Alfie used to wear the socks belonging to the convict JVJ costume in order to better inhabit the role.

10. Alfie once bunked off opera rehearsals in Strasbourg to see Bob Dylan in concert – apparently it was worth it!

11. Alfie is married to an American actress, Sarah Boe.  They met in San Francisco.

12. Alfie was the subject of a South Bank Show documentary in 2013.

13. Alfie once supported the Fron Male Voice Choir on tour.

14. David Miller of Il Divo was in La Boheme on Broadway with Alfie (they played alternate nights as Rodolfo).

15. Alfie recorded some demo Queen tracks at Abbey Road studios whilst a student – he listened back with obvious embarrassment on a recent documentary!

16. Alfie used to work at the Blackpool Opera House in a backstage / security role.

17. Alfie has recorded Empty Chairs, Empty Tables with two of the singers who played Marius: Michael Ball (original Marius and 10th anniversary concert) and Nick Jonas (25th anniversary concert).

18. Alfie recorded Barcelona with Katherine Jenkins for her 2014 album, Home Sweet Home – having first sung it live at Freddie for a Day with Laura Wright in 2013.

19. Alfie was a body mechanic at the TVR factory in Bispham – if you know nothing else about Alfie, you know that!!

20. After graduating from the Royal College of Music, Alfie went on to train at the National Opera Studio.

21. Won the Christie prize at Glyndebourne for Albert Herring.

22. Appeared on several Clint Boon Experience albums as “opera dude”.

23. Spent a few nights sleeping on a park bench in Hyde Park “in between digs” so to speak.

24. Played drums in a local rock band, Whisky Train as a teenager.

25. Alfie is an ambassador for the Prince’s Foundation for Children and The Arts.

26. Alfie sang at the wedding of Peter and Autumn Phillips. (Ave Maria and Panis Angelicus).

27. Alfie famously prefers to perform in opera, rather than listen to them – this is usually quoted incorrectly as “Alfie hates opera”.

28. Alfie often takes fans cameras and phones and takes photos of himself and the band on stage – perks of being front row!

29. New Zealand operatic trio Sol3 Mio supported Alfie on his recent UK tour – here they are singing Volare together:

30. Alfie auditioned (and was called back) for Raoul in Phantom of the Opera – the RCM beckoned though and we shall have to imagine his Raoul.

31. Won a Tony Award as part of the cast of La Boheme on Broadway.

32. First professional audition was for the D’oyly Carte Opera company – he sang You Are My Hearts Delight.

33. Moonwalked across the stage during final performance of Romeo et Juliette at the Royal Opera House.

34. Appeared on Vanessa Feltz’s BBC Radio 2 programme as part of the Wednesday Words of Warmth – his tip to get through a Wednesday was to make a big bowl of meat pasta sauce.

35. West London Karaoke Champion 1994 singing Suspicious Minds.

36. Patron of Trinity Hospice, Blackpool.

37. First recording Alfie appears on is Die Fledermaus, with the D’oyly Carte company (in the chorus).

38. Suffered from chlorine poisoning whilst filming a projection for The Pearl Fishers at the ENO.

39. Brother Michael is also a talented singer, recent album is called A La Voix.

40. Alfie and Sarah’s first dance at the their wedding was Led Zeppelin’s Rain Song.

41. First, and so far only, performer, with Renee Fleming to sing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace (at the Diamond Jubilee celebrations).

42. Alfie was first introduced to La Boheme by his brother Michael – thank you Michael!

43. Alfie is great at comedy falls – as witnessed by viewers of Jonathan Ross show in October 2013!

44. Twitter often mentions how much Alfie looks like Declan Donnelly – maybe, but only without his beard – judge for yourself:


45. Knows nothing about dancing – as evidenced by his appearances on Strictly It Takes Two!

46. First song with lyrics written by Alfie recorded for Serenata 2014: My Heart is Yours.

47. Singing the role of Jimmy in Classic Quadrophenia in July 2015 – another one you all knew surely!

48. Used 40lbs of ice in the ALS ice bucket challenge.

49. Has a golden retriever, Guinness and a black and white cat, name???

50. A photo of Alfie; together with his amazing voice, what other reason to you need to love Alfie Boe? (thanks to Carole Hunt who took this gorgeous photo and generously allowed me to use it on my blog – what a star xx)



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So Alfie Asks Us To Dance – Should We?

I imagine quite a few of you are saying “of course we should” in answer to this question – well, I think we would all like to dance with Mr B – but in this instance I’m talking about dancing at an Alfie concert.  Alfie is well known for urging audiences to stand up and dance at concerts but what is the right thing to do if you want to dance and no one else does?  If you are on the front row and dancing, how does that affect others behind you?  Alternatively, if you have paid a lot of money to sit on the front row, how do you feel if a lot of people come and stand in front of you for half the concert?  I’m not sure I have the answers to these conundrums but here we go anyway.

In his recent UK tour, Alfie several times, at a certain point in the show, asked us all to dance.  We were left in no doubt that he wanted us to dance as he urged us to “get up, on your feet, that means stand up”! Now I didn’t need much encouragement to get up and dance but in some cases it can be a bit awkward if you stand up and look around and….you are the only one standing!  Particularly if you are near the front – it takes a bit of nerve to keep on standing when all around are sitting and looking a bit disapproving.  I’ll admit, at some shows I was a bit like a yo-yo!

Of the shows I attended on this most recent tour, the best dancing crowd was at the O2 in London; being halfway back on the arena floor I was well placed to see that a lot of the audience was up and dancing for most of the show after Alfie had asked us to dance.  However, the next night, and last night of the tour, Cardiff, was a totally different kettle of fish.  Although the audience responded well when Alfie first asked us to dance it was short lived as most sat down immediately after that song (Volare, I think) and the majority didn’t get up again.  They made up for this by being the best singing crowd – Wales really is a nation of fabulous singers.

So, when I asked you all for your comments on this contentious subject, the main response was that if Alfie asks, then you should definitely dance if you are able.  Having said that, a fair amount of people did raise the point about the possibly blocked view of those behind you – some respondents had been stuck behind a lot of standing people and ended up seeing not much at all.  Fans unable to stand / dance are more likely than others to face this problem.  They don’t want to spoil the enjoyment of others but they do want to be able to see Alfie too.

And there we have the conundrum: how to enjoy yourself and dance whilst not spoiling the enjoyment of others.  Even after researching this post and talking to lots of fellow fans I still don’t have the definitive answer.  I love to dance at a concert so if appropriate I will do so although I’d like to think I wasn’t spoiling it for anyone else at the same time.  I suppose the only way to ensure that is to get everyone else to stand up at the same time – answers on a postcard please as to how we can do that!  Perhaps it would help if we were allowed to dance in the aisles or at the front, something that happened at a few venues on the Storyteller tour but not this time around.  Then again…what about that question I posed at the top, what if you had a front row ticket and everyone came and stood in front of you? You might still have a good view being at the front but then again…and there we are going round in circles again.  Did I mention I don’t have the answers????!!!! We will probably have this discussion for as long as Alfie urges his audiences to get up and dance so feel free to add your thought to the comments box.

One reason for dancing, given time and time again, is that Alfie so clearly appreciates and loves seeing his fans dancing and having a good time.  I have to agree with this – in London, he was thrilled to see a group of fans standing and dancing through the Quadrophenia songs in the encore.  Additionally, where possible, he gets fans on stage to dance with him (this happened in Bournemouth) and at the Huawei Winter Concert at the Royal Festival Hall in December 2013 he pulled a girl out of the stalls to dance on stage with him as she was almost the only one dancing.  The main set finished with almost half the audience on stage (thanks Linda for sharing):

Glory Glory Hallelujah, from Trust was only heard a handful of times on Alfie’s recent tour but it was certainly the song that got people to their feet…mostly!  When I first heard the song, I was dancing round the kitchen to it and every time I’ve heard it since I have to dance so no way was I sitting down on the tour!  It’s a song I just HAVE to dance to, and I know I’m not alone in that opinion!

Alfie Boe’s 2013 album Trust is available now:

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