Act II of the ‘Cosmic Opera’ event covered two nights just like the first. But while Act I was called the Overture, Act II was dubbed Imbroglio as the promoters sought to bring out more “intensity, conflict, and charged emotion” in the performance. On the first night, a Thursday, ‘Cosmic Opera’ Act II succeeded in adding more glamour and theatrics with additional stages for frequent dancer appearances and a doubling down on costumes with people attired in either dark Mardi Gras theme apparel or in shimmery silver body suits with blonde wigs. These somewhat waylaid the main complaints that arose about Act I (with Axwell) where the theme was done weakly as PopMatters and others reported. There was little need to create a theme around the event with such a huge turnout for the DJ. I wouldn’t suggest Act II’s improvements were important, but it was nice to see they were trying.
The main problem though was a weaker turnout on Thursday night, which created an ambivalent atmosphere. Whether it was the weeknight effect or something with the lineup, which included Le Grand, Zedd and Funkagenda, the large Hammerstein Ballroom never seemed more than half full. While most people who arrived stayed through the end, the crowd saw some churning as the artists on stage changed. But for those who got to the front, they stuck around to enjoy the late evening and Le Grand’s appearance gave them the energy to go late into the night. Lights, smoke jets and dancers kept the crowd looking for something new, but the music is what ensured they were entertained. Now they just have to wait and see what Act III will have in store for them next month.
// Notes from the Road
"Cage the Elephant rocked two sold-out nights at Summerstage and return to NYC for a free show May 29th. Info on that and a preview of the full Summerstage schedule is here.READ the article