Sara Evans at the Patriot Center, Fairfax, VA, Friday 18 February 2005
Friday night at the Patriot Center, Sara Evans's microphone kept cutting out during her opening number, "Rockin' Horse," but if it bothered her she never let on. The performance seemed to capture the mantra of her song "Perfect": "Real love and real life doesn't have to be perfect." Evans admitted to the enthusiastic crowd that she was singing with a cold -- -and the strain on her vocals showed in songs like "Saints and Angels."
But poor health didn't slow Evans down. Her hour-long set was an energetic performance of mostly uptempo country tunes executed with genuine enthusiasm. Adorned in a pale pink blazer, jeans and a sparkly belt that spelled "love" across her waist, she literally twinkled with excitement every time she walked across the stage. She introduced the mellow "Tonight" as "a sexy song about not wanting to leave the one you're with" -- but it displayed good old-fashioned affection rather than modern raunch ("Hold on tight and tell me I'm the only one you see tonight").
It was no surprise when Evans thanked the crowd for letting her live out her dream, and to close her set she belted out the Belinda Carlisle hit "Heaven Is a Place on Earth" as if it were the first time it had ever been performed. The evening may not have been flawless, but to the fans singing along with every tune, it was perfect.
-- Catherine P. Lewis
.: Originally published: The Washington Post, 21 February 2005