Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Two Young Elton Fans Get Upgraded to Front Row

For Janice Ross of Baker Settlement, getting tickets to see Elton John in concert at Sydney's Centre 200 September 13 was a dream come true.


But what was to happen to her two sons, David, 12, and Danny, 15, at the event would turn out to be even more special.

Ms Ross was one of what was probably tens of thousands who jammed phone lines and the internet when tickets for Sir Elton first went on sale in mid-July, but she knew the odds of actually getting any were slim.

"It was a fluke really," she explained. "There was a glitch in the ticket system, so for the first hour all four of us went on our electronic equipment trying to get tickets and the phones weren't being answered and we were being booted off the electronic system."

While everyone else in the family gave up trying, Ms Ross persevered for another half-hour before she eventually called a relative in Sydney who told her the system had crashed.

"I figured everybody was like me and had just stopped for awhile, so around one o'clock I decided I was going to go back on and I checked two different ways that said it was sold out," she recalls. "I just kept clicking. You could tell that things weren't working right, then all of a sudden it said, 'How many tickets would you like?' It was just a stroke of luck."

Two months later, with eight tickets in hand, the Ross family and four friends converged on Centre 200 for the concert where, out of the blue, another, even bigger surprise awaited them, all because of something Ms Ross did "just on a whim."

The day before the event, she went to a store and had special T-shirts made up for her two sons. Danny's bore his Christian name, Daniel, which is also the title of one of Sir Elton's biggest hits, on the front, while David's carried the moniker "Daniel's My Brother," prominent words from the song's chorus.

"I thought maybe they'd get a picture taken," she laughed. "I didn't know exactly. I hadn't been to a concert for many a day."

As it turned out, those T-shirts attracted a lot more attention than the family ever dreamed.

"We were just sitting down and this guy come up to us and said, 'How would you and your brother like two front-row seats, because Elton John would like your shirts,'" David said.

The man also told the boys that they couldn't sell the tickets or trade them and that only they could use them.

Before the show started, Danny and David were shuttled to the front of the stage and spent the entire two-hour concert barely six feet away from the pop superstar as he performed a selection of his greatest hits, including "Daniel," which he dedicated "to the two boys wearing the shirts in the front row."

The excitement, however, didn't end there.

Ms Ross had taken her husband's copy of Sir Elton's 1975 album "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy" in the remote hope of getting an autograph, and had given it to David before they proceeded to their front-row seats.

"When the guy came with the tickets David asked, 'Can we get autographs?' and he said, 'Probably,' and he remembered," she laughed.

Prior to doing his encore, Sir Elton came to the edge of the stage and gestured for the record, which he signed and passed back to the two young fans, an expression which someone in the audience captured on video and later posted on YouTube.

It was a fitting conclusion for a night which was truly one to remember.

"It was surreal," Danny said.

- Southshorenow

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Brianna Hojnacki said...

Omg!!! I love this story! Those guys are awesome! I'm a 17 year old girl, never seen Elton live before but something wonderful happened to me. I thought I'd have no money to see Elton, and I though it would be too late. But then out of the blue, random STRANGERS donated me $300 to see him! I didn't even ask! So now me and my mom are going to this Elton John concert and I CAN'T WAIT to see him! He's my inspiration and I love him so so dearly. There are unbelievable acts of kindness in this world and I am so thankful for it all. Maybe I can customize a t-shirt myself...? :)