Janelle Monae

To twerk at the symphony: Tipping on the tightrope with Janelle Monae

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There was a moment at Janelle Monae's show at the SF Symphony last night when it looked as if the diorama of world-class musicians behind the diminutive person in black-and-white striped shoes, pompadour, and endless progression of tailored tuxedo jackets was a natural growth. If the trombone-and-oboe look isn't an every day occurance for Monae, she did not let on as the final moments of Prince's "Take Me With You" surged around her. The andro-android turned her back to the audience and almost subconsciously, began waving her arms, a sudden conductor. 

And then by the end of the next song the entire spangly gown crowd was on their pave-jeweled feet, twerking in the aisle. Maybe Monae can't always have a back-up symphony, but the Symphony should always have a Monae in front of it. Read more »

4 reasons that spending $150 on Janelle Monae tickets is not 100 percent ridiculous

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1. Her Thu/16 show is at the symphony It is! The show is at Davies Symphony Hall and features actual symphony musicians playing actual orchestral arrangements to back up android-andro chic Ms. Monae, whose set will include material from her new album even. She's dropping through the Chicago Symphony later this month as a last-minute stand-in for Aretha Franklin, so you can go to her SF gig and chortle about the Windy City getting our original orchestral arrangement sloppy seconds. This will be a wonderful chance to see the Symphony dames approximate Rocky Horror Picture Show, if Thursday night's fashion scene is anything like this episode of 106th and Park: Read more »