Since interviewing Mr Iglesias some years before this concert I have received a Christmas card every year, without fail. It always features his blonde children from his second marriage, never him.I'm not special though. Pretty sure everyone who has ever interviewed him is on his mailing list.
Opera House, November 18, 2004
There’s a famous line, most recently from the film The Usual Suspects, which says the devil’s greatest trick was in convincing the world he didn’t exist.
The devilishly charming Julio Iglesias’s greatest trick may be in convincing the world he does exist.
The Julio Iglesias we all think we know, the Julio Iglesias a few thousand people paid very real money to see, is the serial seducer with the golden voice who is a woman’s dream thanks to his super sexy songs and a manner which is more (entwined) bedsheets than bedside.
And certainly Senor Iglesias is not one to let you forget this, telling us early and then often, that tonight is all about sex (which apparently he had in abundance on his first Australian tour in 1972); that the Opera House tonight is the sexiest place in the whole city; that “tonight when you go back home you will make love to each other”; that pregnancies will follow tonight.
The mood was enhanced by regular visits to the stage by a male and a female dancer – she scantily dressed; he serious of mien; both slicked down by litres of pomade – who danced the tango (“like making love vertically”, sexy senor said) and others of what Paul Mercurio once called the “dances of love”.
It was enough at one point to have one of a group of three middle-aged women sitting behind me (with not a man in reach) say: “This is sooo sensual”.
To which her companions responded in a unison sigh: “Oh yesss.”
Goodness, is it just me or is it getting very hot in here ladies?
The funny thing is of course that much of this is not just a façade but a flimsy one.
Iglesias is a very limited singer, all chest and nose with no power from his diaphragm, who sings with his eyes closed, his body still (save for a few hand movements across his lower chest suggesting a case of chorizo heartburn) and at some remove from us, both literally (he normally stands at the back of the stage) and figuratively (there is no connection with the audience during, only after, a song).
It’s left to the dancers and the backing singers to ratchet up any sensual temperature.
What’s more the songs, usually just below mid-tempo and arranged in such a way that they are virtually interchangeable, have as much sexiness as support hose.
But the power of suggestion is a powerful thing. It’s ever so romantic, don’t you think? Oh yesss.