Written By: Carole Bayley
Format: Music Show
Date: July 4 2018
Location: St. George’s Hall, Liverpool
Singer-songwriter Elio Pace presented Elvis Presley in one of my favourite iconic buildings in Liverpool, the St. Georges Hall Concert Room.
The circular room, with its sparkling chandeliers, ornate statues and beautiful ceilings, provided the perfect ambience for what was in store. It has to be said that the St George’s Hall architecture is incredible. And all this to see before the show even started!
Elio was born in Woking, Surrey in 1968 to Italian parents, and as a tribute, one of the song verses was sung in their native tongue. He has had a wide and varied musical career, appearing in shows, directing and performing as a band member for many a famous person/group. He is now eminent in his own right and touring with his celebration of Elvis Aaron Presley.
The show started with a brief drumming solo by Steve Rushton, shortly followed on the stage by Elio Pace performing the first song of the night That’s Alright Mama. And that was it – the show was off to a brilliant start!
Elio, along with his drummer Steve Rushton (who in my view is very similar in looks to Harry Hill), are accomplished performers, and here they provided the audience with renditions of Elvis songs like we have never heard them before. They use piano and drums for their overall music. A stripped-back band effect is how it was described by Elio himself. A tambourine was also used in one piece, and a set of maracas were shaken and doubled up as drum sticks in another. Wooden Heart and Are You Lonesome Tonight were performed with Elio playing his 1963 white accordion. Steve is extremely entertaining to watch, as he plays his drums at a pure masterclass level. The sound all evening was amazing.
During the evening, Elio Pace used interesting and informative dialogue about Elvis Presley to engage and inform the small, but perfectly formed, audience who were completely transfixed.
Heartbreak Hotel started the second half of their show and was as good as, if not better, than the first. The audience just could not stay in their seats.
My favourite song of the evening was An American Trilogy; it was truly breath-taking and included part of a live recording from the radio broadcast in the hour after Elvis died.
The show had to finish at some point. Towards the end of the second set, there was a 20-minute session of back-to-back non-stop Elvis hits, an audience request slot of Suspicious Minds, and then we heard the final song The Wonder Of You.
By no means does Elio try to impersonate, nor does he dress as, Elvis. There was no need; his outright excellent performance did it all and he exceeded all my expectations. He has a phenomenal voice, and every single song was sang absolutely note and tune perfect.
So, this was a sterling show. Wow. Just wow!
Overall Rating: 10/10 – Perfect