By David Araújo
|Klaus e Matthias em Porto Alegre
| Foto: Roberta Forster
As pointed out by Roberta and Pati, it's always a rush, and this time was no different. It would have made more sense to go from Ribeirão Preto to São Paulo for the next show, but it wasn't the case. We went down to Florianópolis and then back up to São Paulo, and then we had to go down again to Porto Alegre, and then up again to go home. Are these the ups and downs they talk about?
But getting back to our sequence of shows, it was time for Porto Alegre to take the stage, and this time with a small but very important sidenote that we'll talk about soon. As soon as we arrived in the state capital, I went with Bela and her mother to a doctor’s appointment, pretty rock n roll, right? Nothing more than a glimpse of a "normal life" amidst the tour dream we were living. Then we went to pick up a cake at a bakery, but it wasn't just any cake.
If you follow Scorpions Brazil faithfully, you know that we talked to Klaus months ago about the upcoming shows. An important point or "sidenote," as I mentioned earlier, marked Porto Alegre as the host of the 50th Scorpions show in our country. I realized this because of that old map I made with all the shows from the 2016 and 2019 tours. In the latter, there were 45 shows, so if we had five more this year, we would reach the grand number of fifty, and in my mind, it could be celebrated. I told Klaus during the interview and asked if it wouldn't be the case to celebrate, so he kind of brushed it off, but in the end, he also thought it was a good idea, even mentioning a cake...who knows?
From those days of the interview until the day of the show, I prepared commemorative plaques for the 50th show for the entire band and their managers, and also updated the old map of the tours in Brazilian grounds. Back to the cake, yes, it was the same cake suggested by Klaus Meine, which was such a headache until we managed to find a solution to this small sweet problem of finding someone to make and customize it so that it would be something very special, and it was!
As you read this whole story, you may wonder: "okay, but what's going to happen?", "Are they going to celebrate with the band, is that it?" Well, we didn't even know how it would be, the only thing we were sure of was that we had many plaques and a cake to be handed in some way.
It is undeniable that, judging only by the photos, everything can seem very easy, if you have read my book "The Other Side of the Show" you may already be well acquainted and know that it is not quite like that, everything is very complicated absolutely every time, we are talking about a relationship with the oldest active band in the world (let's forget the Rolling Stones for a moment). But I must also acknowledge that in the end everything works out and happens as it should. But let's go back to the difficulties. On the day of the show, I went with Bela to Pati's apartment to meet her, Roberta and Larissa, and also to leave the cake there, since it was closer to the venue and we would have to take the plaques to Gigantinho. And so it happened, we met again a little later in front of the box office to pick up our tickets and start to see how things would unfold that night.
|Fernanda, ganhadora da nossa promoção, no Meet´n´Greet de Porto Alegre
Fernanda, the winner of the Porto Alegre meet and greet, soon appeared where we were and we met in person. We were waiting for instructions on how the M&G of that day would be and how we would go inside with the cake and plaques, so we counted on the great help of Marcelo, from Opus Entertainment, to make everything at least a little more organized and to ensure that everything went well. We headed to the back of Gigantinho at the agreed time and almost at the last minute we were informed that everything was aligned for us to enter with all the material in the meet and greet and for the band to receive us.
|Klaus Meine em Porto Alegre | Foto: Roberta Forster
Finally, we went inside and were hurried by security guards (as always), and I started handing out all the plaques while greeting the band. Delivering each one by name, I passed the plaques to the girls, and finally, I could hand the last one to Rudolf! Everyone was excited and happy with the tribute. We posed for a photo with the full teams, their plaques, and the dignifying cake in the middle, with Pati. Then it was time for each one to take their pictures with the band, and to wrap up, it was Bela and me.
|Equipe Scorpions Brazil, Scorpions e o bolo!
We said our goodbyes and heard many thanks for everything, every effort was worth it even for such a brief moment. On the way out, before going to the standing area, one more plaque needed to be handed out. I insisted on making one that represented the sCrewpions (the band's crew), and nothing could be more logical than giving it to the Brazilian Léo Soares, who was also very happy! We chatted for a bit and finally waited for the show to start.
As for the show, we don't need to say much, the band’s great and Klaus' voice only gets better during the tour after a few shows. It's amazing how much they give to the audience after so many years of career. But I need to talk about a specific moment of this 50th show in Brazil, besides the various interactions they had with us, a look, a wave and sometimes even pointing directly to us from the stage. If you allow me a comment before, precisely about this affection the band has for their fans, it's interesting and you can tell that they really see us from up there. So, if you happen to think that one of them looked at you or waved at you, they really did! Continuing with what I was starting to say, they’re coming back for the encore after Big City Nights. At that moment, you already feel nostalgic for the show because you know it's almost over, and even more so because it's the last performance of the Brazilian tour. For me, it's a moment to contemplate and be grateful for them being there once again, putting on another excellent show. But this time it went far beyond, not even in my wildest dreams did I imagine what was about to happen. Klaus starts saying: "Today is our last show in Brazil in 2023 and I would like to thank all the Brazilian fans, it was fantastic." Okay, pretty normal and very cool, but he continues: "It's always amazing to be with you. Our friend David has been to all these shows in these recent years. Today is our 50th show [in Brazil], it's incredible, and I want to thank all our fans for all the love and support over all these years. Still Loving You, Brazil!" After seeing Klaus pointing to me and saying "our friend David" in gratitude to the fans and Rudolf also directing himself to me and giving me a thumbs up, I promptly responded with gestures of gratitude, but all in "autopilot" because after hearing my name I just froze, like it hadn't happened in a long time, to the point of being paralyzed and wondering if that had really happened or if I was in some crazy parallel reality in my head. You know when you have to stop and think about everything that just happened? And so I went on like that for some long 5 minutes? I don't know, maybe I haven't fully recovered from everything that happened until today. Oh, curious as I am, I checked and found an impressive fluctuation in my heart rate during those minutes, from 130bpm to 71bpm, then 153bpm, another dip to 88bpm, and then a peak of 164bpm. I don't even know if this is normal or possible. All of that while frozen and with so much going through my head. You can check out the speech in the video below:
I was speechless for yet another incredible thing they did for me. And I am even more grateful for having had the opportunity to personally thank Klaus the next day and tell him that I will never forget that night and that gesture. Roberta even added that he almost made me cry, and I believe I didn't cry only because of the complexity of understanding what was happening in that crowded arena. The next morning, duly authorized, we went to meet them to say a nostalgic goodbye and thank them for the great tour we had during all these days. Oh! And we also found out that they took the cake to the hotel after the show and even Bruce Dickinson had a piece! Not bad for an idea that worked out at the last minute
We were at 4 of the 5 shows in Brazil this year, and with that, we were also able to be with so many old and new friends along the road, and our team has grown with a great journalist, Larissa. We ended with a very positive balance and already with several ideas to continue bringing the Brazilian fans closer to our favorite band. Keep following us! Because they will be back...
Fotos do show em Porto Alegre | 📷 Roberta Forster