Friday, February 06, 2009

Victoria Theodore on The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Hello friends,

For those of you who couldn't watch the broadcast of Stevie Wonder's performance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, here are the YouTube link (which will probably disappear soon) and the link to Ellen's video page:

YouTube: I Wish not legal, so it will probably be revoked soon

YouTube: All About The Love not legal, so it will probably be revoked soon

Ellen So far only the video of the first song is there. Since the new song hasn't been released yet, they might not upload that one.

On Tuesday afternoon, February 4, 2009, I received a phone call letting me know that Stevie Wonder would be performing for The Ellen DeGeneres Show in Los Angeles. I made the necessary schedule adjustments and phone calls and packed my bag to head south. I flew to Burbank early Thursday morning, and spent an hour or so in my hotel room reviewing the songs that we were to perform: "I Wish" and Stevie’s new song in honor of President Obama “All About The Love”. I was excited about performing with Stevie for the first time on American television! In England, we performed on The Jonathan Ross Show, but I’d never before performed on a nationally syndicated show. I don’t actually watch much television, but am familiar with Ellen DeGeneres mainly through her amazing performance as Dory in Finding Nemo, one of my favorite animated characters of all time! Upon arriving at the Warner Brothers Lot, we were met by Ellen’s pleasant, accommodating and professional staff, and led into our dressing rooms. The dressing room was very well appointed and loaded with all kinds of snacks…the kind I don’t eat: junk food, sodas, etc. I ventured into the band room (they always place me in the room with the female background singers for obvious reasons!), and found that there were yummy vegetarian sandwiches available! What joy!! I quickly snatched up and ate a few of the avocado, sprout, and tomato sandwiches with glee. While I’m not a true vegetarian (I occasionally indulge in poultry and seafood when I get a craving), I mostly eat fruits and vegetables and I was so impressed that Ellen’s staff provided an option for someone with a healthy food preference!

After finishing my snack, I walked to the stage where we were to run through a rehearsal. Ellen’s stage set is beautiful! It’s very homey (in a high end, exclusive interior decorator designed sense, complete with exotic plants, and luscious hard wood floors), and I felt instantly at ease in the space. We ran a sound check, during which I had another chance to play Stevie’s beautiful Yamaha piano, XS8 keyboard and Hohner Clavinet. I rarely get to play a Clavinet, so it’s always exciting to have the opportunity. Not everyone in the band was able to participate in this performance, but the substitutes, Noland Shaheed on trumpet, and Fred White on vocals, were great.

At the end of the rehearsal, Ellen’s staff told us “ok, you have 10 minutes”. At first, we were all dubious, especially us ladies, none of whom had yet gotten dressed or put on makeup! But, alas, it was true, and, in a flash, I had to quickly put on the top that the wardrobe specialist, Nos, had picked out for me, snatched my hair out of the bun that it had been in, shook my hair around, splashed on some foundation, blush and gloss, and ZOOM! To the stage I flew! During the performance of the first song, I Wish, I began having a minor wardrobe malfunction. I’m rather tiny, and the top that I’d been given was a Small. I wear Extra Small…so, the top kept trying to slide off of me. Thankfully, the strap on the left held it’s place, but after a feeble attempt at adjusting the right strap, while focusing on using both hands during the song (kind of distracting, non?), I gave up and let the strap rest on my biceps. The song went well (including the impromptu intro of “Contusion”), and we walked back to our dressing rooms, where I was able to finish my makeup, have the top adjusted so that it would stay on me (!) and watch the interview with Jennifer Aniston.

Ellen then interviewed Stevie, mentioned the upcoming DVD release “Live At Last" (available March 10, 2009!! I can’t wait to see it!), and asked him about the song that Stevie wrote in honor of President Obama, “All About The Love”. To close the show, we then performed that song. After the show, I had the chance to meet Jennifer Aniston, who was gracious and even shook my hand, Houston Texans tackle Ephraim Salaam and guard Chester Pitts, who are both really nice and funny. Unfortunately, since I don't watch TV, I was fully unfamiliar with their 2008 Superbowl commercial, else I would have spoken to Chester Pitts about classical music (he's also an oboist and might find himself needing to hire an accompanist one day)! It was a GREAT day!

I had a GREAT time performing on the show! I love being on TV! lol

Enjoy!! : >


1 comment:

Xavierism said...


I'm watching the video clip right now! WOW...what a performance. Stevie is amazing. I'm thrilled that you were able to be a part of this moment. To be able to say that you shared the stage with STEVIE WONDER is truly a blessing and a great gift.'re awesome as well so you deserve it.

Happy Valentine's Day to YOU!

Feel the Love~~~~~