Renee’s American Idol Tour 2009 Manchester Recap

Sorry, I know this is LONG!!! Although I’ve already attended 5 shows, I decided to once again head to the east coast for more. J After a grueling 15 hour journey from San Francisco to Manchester, I finally arrived around midnight on the 12th. Originally I had made plans to rent a car and drive down to Providence for the show the next night. I took a bus to Boston and met my new friend Katie, who drove to the Providence show. We had an absolutely fabulous time driving down to Providence. We have a lot in common and became great friends instantly! Initially, we had planned to meet a group of other Adam fans for dinner prior to the show. However, we got lost, and ended up barely making it to the concert in time.

I had secured my ticket through the “VIP ticket requests”, which is the Idol’s agency, and they provide artist release tickets that the Idols do not use for their friends and family. My seat was in the 10th row, towards the right side. Having been much closer for all the prior concerts, I was disappointed. However, the first half of the show was awesome of course!

I had several friends at the show, and was visiting with them both before it started and at intermission. One let me have her 2nd row seat for the second half of the show! This is almost exactly where I sat for the second Newark show. Of course it was phenomenal! I could actually see the pores on Adam’s face! There was nothing notable to say about the show itself – It was just as wonderful as the others.

After the show, my friends and I went to the after party. It was pretty cheesy, this time they didn’t even use one of the backstage bars. We walked through the tunnel and there was a little alcove and they just had the idols standing there. It was a small area. Within a minute of getting into the room, I found that Adam was not there. I cannot even describe the amount of disappointment. I felt like I had been punched in the gut! Trying to recover, I looked around and saw that the only Idols in the room were Matt, Sarver, Kris and Gokey. We decided to go over and talk to Sarver and I asked if he recognized me from Newark. He said he did, and it sounded convincing. I gave him a card and he posed for a picture with me and Katie. He had a long line of people waiting, so he did not talk more. He also looked tired and as though he was tired of meeting with fans. So we left and went over to talk to Kris.

Since Adam wasn’t in the room, the line for Kris was very long. We waited in the line and when we got up to Kris I had him sign the photo I had taken with him in Newark. Then Katie gave him my ticket from the finale in May and asked him to sign that. I didn’t pose for a picture with him because I already have a couple of good ones. But I did take a picture of him with Katie.

After that, we decided that we wanted to get a picture with Ray. Ray is a good guy and I have spoken with him at every after party. I’ve also met him at the barricades and spoken with him when I had a seat in the pod in Newark and he watched the concert while standing right next to us. Everyone knows about Ray (I think he is the tour manager) and we all talk about him on the message boards. So I told him that he is “famous” on the Internet and he laughed and said that he doesn’t go on the Internet much. I told him that everyone says he is a grouch and never smiles and said he’d better smile for the picture, which he did! He is a really great guy and it was fun to talk with him again.

Next we went over to Matt so Katie could take a picture with him. I didn’t really talk to him, as I’ve met him several times and didn’t really have anything to say. Because only four of them were in there, the lines were long to talk to each of them. By then, we decided we had had enough and then left.

After we left, we had to drive back up to Manchester. We were starving, but decided to hit the road towards Boston. By the time we got to Boston, we couldn’t find any open restaurants so we stopped at a market and bought some snacks for the rest of the drive. We then continued up to Manchester. What should have been a 2 hour drive, actually took about 3 1/2 hours! We got so lost trying to find Manchester and kept going back and forth in the wrong direction. I kept calling the hotel and we kept going through the same toll booth over and over. We were laughing hysterically the whole time! In fact, we were so giggly, you would have thought we were drunk! We finally got to the hotel at about 3:30 am! Katie is awesome! We had the best night ever!

When I got to the room, my friend from Texas (that I met at the Sacramento concert) was there and we had a lot of catching up to do. We ended up staying up until about 4:30am. The next evening we went to Piccola, the Italian restaurant in downtown Manchester where I had arranged for a group of Adam fans to get together for dinner. We had a fabulous time! We all just talked about Adam the whole time, having a blast!

On he 15th, we went over to meet everyone at the bar at the Radisson before the concert. It was great to hang out with other Adam fans. We stayed for about an hour, then went over to the arena. There, we met up with my friend Melissa, who had driven out from New Jersey. I hadn’t seen her since I met her at the Newark concert, and it was great to get together again! As it turned out, our 10th row seats were MUCH better than they were in Providence. This time they were dead center. And the smaller arena made the seats even closer to the stage. I knew a lot of other people that were on the floor, so I went around to find everybody and talk. I took lots of pictures with all of my new friends. Then it was time to head back to our seats for the show.

The show was unbelievable! There really aren’t any words to describe how insane it was!

Michael did his set the way he usually does, but I was surprised to see Megan come out in a totally different outfit. Having already seen the show 6 times, I’m pretty familiar with everything. So this blew me away! And then to see the crew guy come out in her dress with the mic — I was dying!

There was nothing memorable about Scott’s set. But I was excited to see Lil get some love during hers. I had met a woman at her pre-party dinner at the bar who had bought a pillow with a giant ring on it to throw to throw to Lil during “Single Ladies.” She did throw it out there and Lil picked it up and danced with it through most of the song. I bet she was thrilled! Matt’s set was great as usual, and the only other change prior to the intermission was at the end of the group number when a bunch of the crewmembers came out and danced.

The second half of the show was phenomenal of course! Allison came out wearing some crazy black wig. Otherwise, her set was the same as always. Adam was his usual awesome self. He gave it his all, without holding back AT ALL! He picked up props and even put a hat on during Bowie. Allison came out to Slow Ride wearing a jockstrap with a tail that someone had thrown on the stage a day earlier. Mad World was beautiful. One funny thing. I noticed that when he took a drink from the water that came up on the stool on the lift (like he always does), he put it down and then went to take a drink from the water back by the drums. Apparently a crew member told someone during intermission that the boys punked Adam by putting Vodka in his water bottle on the stool!

Another story I heard: Someone threw a rubber chicken up way toward the stage, and it bounced off the stage to the floor where nobody could reach it. Then the camera crew saw it and picked it up and started playing with it, teasing Adam, with just the head of the chicken showing at the very edge of the stage. When Adam went to the front of the stage during Slow Ride with Allison and was looking down, he was smiling with a little laugh and pointed at it. Then, during Bowie I saw it in the arms of the backup singer being held like a bottle champagne. Then the chicken became a paddle during Let’s Dance and was thrown onto the stage. Adam picked it up, said “Oh, what a lovely cock it is” and then threw it into the audience.

Kris’s set was fantastic ‘ I just love him! It was hilarious — when Kris raised onto the stage to begin his set, the microphone stand was wrapped in a blue and black boa! Obviously complements of Adam! Another highlight was when he did ‘Ain’t No Sunshine.’  He had picked up a bouquet of roses from the stage and placed them on the piano and there was a glass of water on the piano too. It looked very classy. He made a comment when he looked at the water, presumably because according to someone on the crew, the boys had punked him by putting a live goldfish in his water glass! Then, Matt, Sarver and Anoop came out during the song wearing boas and swooned around Kris. He was having a hard time not laughing! I thought it was sweet when he sang “I’ll miss you guys” in the song.

The finale was epic! I think the pictures really show it all. When Adam and Kris raised up, Kris was wearing Adam’s jacket. Adam wore the sleeveless top he wore for the very first show for the finale. During the song, the crew came out and sprayed silly string all over the idols. At the end of the song the idols all came up and gave a giant group bow and then we just watched them all hugging each other and partying on the stage. Then they started throwing everything into the audience (all of the items that had been thrown onto the stage throughout the tour were dropped from the rafters during the song tonight). Then Sarver threw his leather jacket and Danny threw his eyeglasses. Kris took off Adam’s jacket and pretended to throw it. Adam looked horrified and then started laughing! Then Adam threw his gloves and eventually his jewelry. It was just a giant party!!!

After they had all gone backstage, I ran over to the after party holding area. We waited for what seemed like forever and then they finally took us back. When we first went into the room, the only people we saw in there were Matt, Gokey and Sarver. I was crushed! Given that Adam was not at the after party in Providence, I wasn’t too surprised, but definitely disappointed. However, I saw some movement by the other door, and headed over to that direction. After a few minutes, I heard that people could see Adam through the door in another room. Then I heard screams that he was coming towards us! And then, I looked up, and there he was in the doorway! There were only a few people in front of me. He was holding a huge bouquet of roses and told us that he could not take them on the plane and therefore wanted to give them out to us. Then he started passing them back to everyone. I will treasure that rose forever! It seemed like he was going to try and come into the room, but that was not possible. It was a mob scene, so he ended up staying out in the hall. Eventually Ray was able to get it organized so that we were all in line. Then one by one, we had the opportunity to talk to him and take a picture.

My friend Katie went before me because she had the rainbow roses. She told him what they were and then I joined her and we posed for a picture with him holding the roses. Then she took a picture with Adam and then it was my turn! Even though I’ve already met him three times, I doubt he remembered me. My friend that was there and watching us insists that he did, but I don’t know. First Ray shoved my Rolling Stone in front of him to sign (yes, I keep asking him to sign more!). Then I told him that I didn’t know if he had been collecting the press reviews from the tour, but I had saved them all as PDF files and out them on a flash drive for him. First he looked surprised, and then he said he thought that was very thoughtful and he really appreciated it. He seemed genuinely touched, but again, he’s such a nice guy, he always seems that way! But he did thank me several times for doing that. I guess he really was appreciative, because then he grabbed me and gave me a huge hug that came totally unexpected! Yes, I was dying!!! Of course I don’t remember what else I said to him because it’s all a blur. But I asked for a “huggy” picture and he said of course and posed with me. Then he thanked me for coming – he always thanks everybody so much, when really we are the ones thanking him for being so wonderful! And then I had to move on because the line was so long.

Of course I immediately went to the back of the line for another opportunity to talk to him! The line was still pretty long, but that’s okay — worth the wait! It took about 15 minutes or so, but we got back up there again. This time, I gave him the card that came with my pendant to sign and then he put his arm around my shoulders and posed for a picture. It was so cool — he was rubbing my shoulder — seriously, I almost fainted it was so awesome! Again, he kept saying thank you. I don’t really know why he thanks his fans. He is the one that is giving his precious time to us! I thanked him again and congratulated him on his success and then we had to leave.

My friends and I were on cloud nine as we walked across the street to the Radisson Hotel. We had all arranged to meet at the bar there to talk about our experience. We were hanging out and talking about our meeting with Adam when we looked up and realized that the top 10 dancers from So You Think You Can Dance were in the bar. We went over to talk to them and of course congratulated Janine (the winner). Apparently they are starting their tour in Manchester, which will be using the same crew that just wrapped up with Idol. (I had asked Ray at the after party in Providence what was next for him and he told me that he would be going on the SYTYCD tour).

The girls were really nice and they all posed for a picture with us. Then we had to leave because the bar was closing. Just as we got back to the lobby, we saw Scott and Anoop come in from the buses and walk towards the elevator. Within a couple of minutes we got to see Adam do the same. It was quick — he was carrying what looked like a cup of coffee and Ray was really close to him. But he turned around and waved at the crowd just before getting to the elevator. There were a lot of people in the lobby — at least 50, probably more. We were all talking, laughing and just having a great time!

Then the girl from The Adam Lambert Connection (TALC) brought her laptop down and we all watched the final bubble tweet from the Idol guys. We started watching the videos that she had taken during the concert. It was hilarious to see about 30 people huddled around one laptop! The receptionist at the desk thought we were crazy! Eventually, it started to wind down and people were going up to their rooms. I heard later that about an hour later Matt, Anoop and Danny came down to play the piano and sing and the SYTYCD dancers came out. They had a huge party in the lobby for about an hour and a half with the fans. However, I had to catch a flight, so I wasn’t able to stay, which was a huge bummer. But Adam never came out.

My ‘Summer of Adam’ 

Adam Lambert hasn’t even begun his solo career and already he has had a profound impact on my life. Not only am I a fanatical fan, but thanks to him, I have made the best new lifelong friends. I had AMAZING trips to New York for GMA and the Newark concerts, as well as Manchester for the Providence and Manchester shows.

I am SO lucky!!! In all, I got to attend 7 American Idol concerts, 5 after parties and Adam’s private after party in Newark. I took over 1000 pictures at the concerts and GMA, as well as lots of photos of me and friends with the idols.

I can truly say that nothing could have made this experience any better. I can’t wait for the journey to continue as Adam becomes an international superstar. I will be following him all the way!




About mj santilli 34650 Articles
Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!