The Garden Of Unearthly Delights – The Spiegeltent, Sat 27 Feb
What a fantastic way to spend an evening, with 14 voices joined together in harmony to take turns bringing some lovely songs to the Adelaide Fringe. If You See Her, Say Hello is a collective of female singer-songwriters from Melbourne who join together to sing one another’s songs while providing choir back-up vocals. The overall effect is one of angelic harmony, and the Spiegeltent audience sat spellbound for their performance, stirring only to applaud enthusiastically between songs.
The set-up was sparse: A few microphones, an electric guitar, and an acoustic guitar. The vocalists would line up around the microphones and the featured artist would play and sing a song at the fore with the choir accompaniment and then introduce the next featured artist.
And so it went, song after lovingly-delivered song. On Skyscrapers, the choir would glide up to their chord while Kate McMahon lightly strummed and carried its standout melody, with the ensemble eventually coming to an enchanting harmony close. Amarina Waters joined the choir’s ooo-ing and ahh-ing intro for The Next Blue Moon, her ambling finger-picking shuffle underpinning the gorgeous backing vocals.
The last artist to be featured was Gretta Ray, who was singled out as the youngest at 17, but was also wisely saved for last. She brought the comfort of an old pro as she engaged the audience while showing off her voice that stood out even in this esteemed company, smile beaming as she worked her way through the bridge of her brand new E.P.’s closer, Blank White Canvas.
The group closed with an ensemble cover of James Kenyon’s Silverwater – Longbay, trading lead vocals on the verses and singing en masse for the chorus, leaving the audience delighted. Here’s to hoping these artists return to Adelaide sometime soon, together or apart.