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Dusty Springfield: Live at the Royal Albert Hall
Dusty Springfield Live at the Royal Albert Hall
Director: Mike Mansfield
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
NR     2005     1hr 40min

Dusty Springfield is Britain?s greatest ever pop diva and the possessor of one of the finest and most soulful voices of all time. She dominated both the UK and US charts throughout the sixties with a string of hit singles ...  more »


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Movie Details

Director: Mike Mansfield
Genres: Music Video & Concerts
Sub-Genres: Pop, Rock & Roll, DTS
Studio: Eagle Rock Ent
Format: DVD - Color
DVD Release Date: 11/01/2005
Original Release Date: 01/01/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2005
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 1hr 40min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

The Bitch is Back!
S. Sittig | Washington, D.C. | 11/03/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"From the opening musical intro (a wonderfully tongue in cheek version of "The Bitch is Back", sung by her backing vocalists), to the very last notes of "Put Your Hands Together", this concert is a MUST see for any music fan, and of course, a total treat for anyone who calls themselves a true Dusty Springfield afficionado.

The evening is full of energy and shows Dusty Springfield in the best light perhaps since her 60s hey dey. Not since then had we seen her so relaxed, so laid-back, so fully committed to entertain her audience.

And entertain she does, going through a wonderfully varied repertoire for this concert. She covers disco ("We Are Family", "You Can Do It", Grace Jones' "On Your Knees"), delivers the big ballads she was known for ("All I See Is You", "I Close My Eyes and Count To Ten", "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me"), delivers a rousing medley of her well known hits, (starting with a mesmerizing few lines of Carole King's "Goin' Back") and as if that weren't enough, she throws in a few brilliant covers of Karla Bonoff's "Lose Again" (made popular by Linda Ronstadt) and Peter Allen's "Quiet Please, There's A Lady On Stage" in which she reaches Judy Garland-like proportions of showwomanship.

The picture quality is absolutely AMAZING and I love the Main Menu and the other Menus graphics..great sound effects and wonderful pictures of the White Queen of Soul. The sound quality is not as strong as the picture quality, but I guess they did the best they could with what was available on the master tapes.

Dusty looks radiant and performs majestically! The liner notes are actually quite good this time (in my view) and they capture perfectly the spirit of the concert. Dusty does seem more laid-back than ever on this one and yes, there are several small glitches and hiccups vocally as well as technically, but nothing major...and whatever precision is lost is made up for with a wonderful energy and enthusiasm that's wonderful to see.

The interviews are also fantastic..especially Pat Rhodes, Madeleine Bell and Simon Bell. Simon almost made me cry on several occasions, especially towards the end, when it was clear he was also moved and missing Dusty. He is a great guy, and it's clear to see why Dusty wanted him near in her final days.

While Springfield seems to excel at the ballads, what is most surprising is to watch her take command of her audience with an assurance and strength that is still encased in a warm, vulnerable glow. No one else but perhaps a Garland or maybe a Piaf, could make 3,000 people feel as if she was singing only to each of them...individually. That sort of ability is a rare thing indeed, and Dusty Springfield shows it fully during this concert. She has every single audience member in the palm of her hand from beginning to end. This is not something you see very frequently nowadays from a performer. It is something of legend, indeed.

There's a Lady on Stage
A. Hickman | Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria | 02/10/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Dusty Springfield performed live all too infrequently, especially in the second half of her career. Even less frequently did she appear before the camera. So these few moments caught on film are especially poignant. This performance, before Princess Margaret at the Royal Albert Hall, has a thrown-together feel, and Dusty doesn't always look like she knows what to do with the stage, but the rapport she establishes with her fans is immediate and real. I like the drama she brings to a song like "Quite Please, There's a Lady on Stage," a song she never recorded for an album and which was written by Peter Allen with Judy Garland in mind, but which provided the perfect coda to what was essentially a comeback performance, following her decade-long "exile" in America. But it's the hits that her fans want to hear, and she delivers these in spades. From "I Close My Eyes and Count to Ten" to "You Don't Have to Say You Love Me," her catalog is among the most recognizable in the history of pop (for insights into her career, one couldn't ask for more than the interviews with Pat Rhodes, Simon Bell, and others on the DVD). She looks great; she sounds great; and the songs hold up. So put your hands together and enjoy."
Dusty at her legendary best - a must for your collection
Reader from Singapore | 12/26/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

""Live At The Royal Albert Hall" on DVD is an ecstatic dream come true for Dusty's fans not only because it captures the legendary singer in fine voice and at her most lovely and joyous since returning from a long hiatus in the mid-70s but simply because apart from her 1966 and 1967 black and white TV series for the BBC which have since been (partially) recovered by the station, it is the only surviving tape of a full concert given by Dusty in her long and illustrious career that is still known to exist in the archives. Unbelievable but true.

Dusty's singing changed so much over the years it seems futile to debate when exactly she was at her vocal peak. Certainly, 1966 was an early peak when her voice was at its most searing and powerful whether she was tackling a big ballad or a torchy soul number. But then, the legendary "Dusty In Memphis" happened only in late 1968 and from thereon, Dusty began developing the softer, breathier and more delicate side to her singing voice, which effectively transformed her from 60s belter to mature pop stylist by the end of the decade. Still, many fans cite 1972/1973 - on the evidence of her performances on "Cameo" and private collectors' tapes of TV appearances given at the time - as another period when Dusty's vocal craft had possibly peaked in terms of control, flexibility and phrasing. By 1978, following a long break from singing, the new Dusty voice may have mellowed, but like good wine still retained its honeyed edge and sparkle. That's the voice we hear on the Live At The Royal Albert Hall concert performance given on 3 Dec 1979. For me, that's the third and (possibly final) vocal peak period I would assign to Dusty until the time she made her final album and public appearance in 1995.

The highlights of the concert are inevitably the spellbinding hits medley as well as full renditions of "I Close My Eyes And Count To Ten", "All I See Is You", "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me" and "Son Of A Preacher Man". Having said that, Dusty's incredibly soulful live takes of Natalie Cole's "This Will Be" and the O'Jays' "Put Your Hands Together" showcase her broad range and stylistic versatility if nothing else. That's not to say that Dusty ignored her own contemporary material. She did in fact include three songs from her late 70s repertoire in the concert - "Sandra", "Hollywood Movie Girls" and "Baby Blue" - but these were unfortunately excised from the TV edit of the concert we now have on DVD. Two of these three songs are included in the companion CD release as extras.

Dusty captured live at the Royal Albert Hall has a definite looseness about it. It was according to interviews with those close to the artiste (included as extras on the DVD) under-rehearsed, so there were a couple of less than polished spots like "The Look Of Love" which featured a laughing Dusty singing to the cameraman following her around on stage but these moments only add to the poignance of the concert experience. Dusty never seemed happier in front of her adoring fans in the audience. That two-way flow of love between artiste and audience just built and built as the concert went underway until it reached a climax in the encore.

"Live At The Royal Albert Hall" is a wonderful concert by a great artiste at one of her many vocal peaks and is a must in the collection of any self-respecting Dusty fan.

Happy This Was Released
W. Schultz | Detroit | 06/07/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I am not sure this was Dusty Springfield as Great as she could be, however for us to have any footage of her in concert is a blessing and I am very thankful it was released. Dusty looks great and hits her stride on "Quiet Please, There's a Lady on Stage". A MUST for any dusty fan."