I was up at my friend, Ashley's house, and we were surfing the internet, looking for nothing unparticular, just looking around on Hanson pages, which was our new obsession. I think that we were on HansonHITZ and we saw that they were going to be in Toronto on August 16th, and both realized that it would be really cool if we would be able to go to see them in concert. But, we were only joking, because we live in a small town in Pennsylvania, no where near Toronto.
A few days later, I guess that Ashley brought the idea up to her mom, who, didn't say no. In fact, she started asking questions about the concert, like, when it was and where it was. Then, Ashley called me, and we were freaking out because her mom said that she might consider taking us! We were so excited! Seeing Hanson last summer seemed like our life long goal that we wanted to see it actually happen.
Before we knew what was happening, we had permission, by both my parents and her parents to go to Toronto, to see Hanson. Now, being that I was only 14 and Ashley was still 13, we couldn't really get in the car and drive. Ashley's parents agreed to take us there, pay for the hotel stay and to drive us back home. We were totally grateful. My parents even let me take the video camera, in hopes of getting some home footage of my idols, Hanson.
On Thursday night, I spent it at Ashley's house, and we were up basically the whole night trying to think of stuff and situations that would happen while we were on the trip and how we would deal with them. We finally fell asleep and before we knew it, we were leaving, in the car, on our way to Toronto.
Since I did have the video camera, we decided that it would be cool to make it a little scrapbook on tape. It was entitled "The Toronto Trip '97" and every time we crossed a border, like from PA to NY and NY to Canada, I pulled the camera out and we taped some. I was even stupid enough to take the camera in to the little truck stop where we ate lunch! But, it was fun.
We finally reached Toronto, and we were somewhat excited because we were now officially in the same city as Hanson was. We were crazy. We were freaking out simply because we were going to be sleeping in the same area code as they were!! That night, we went ahead and drove to Wonderland, to make sure that we knew how to get there, so it would make the trip easier in the morning. We got there, and were all surprised at how big that Kingswood Music Theater was, where they were going to be performing. We picked up some maps of the park, so we could plan our running route and get a good seat.
We left the hotel at 8:00 in the morning. Hanson wasn't even scheduled to perform until 7:30 that evening. We got to the park, and we were kinda scared because there was already a lot of people there, in line, wanting to buy tickets. But tickets didn't go on sale until 10:00, when the park actually opened. We were smart, and bought our tickets ahead at the hotel the night before. So, we were allowed to walk up to the front gates. There were about 20-30 girls already at the front gate, waiting for the opening. To be nice, one of the guys that worked there was talking to us, and he informed us that there wasn't going to be allowed any video recording or flash photography. But, I looked over at Ashley, who said "We came from PA, we'll tape if we want too" and we did. The gates opened 1 hour early because there was already a TON of people there.
It was a mad rush to the theater. It was also so hectic. First of all, Ashley and me had no idea how to get to the theater, so we just followed everyone else. Then, she dropped her ticket stub. She thought that we needed it to be able to get into the theater. So, we had to stop and pick it up. Anyway, by the time that all the madness was over and we were sitting down in the little plastic blue chairs in the theater, we were in the 8th row, center stage. Not bad, considering that there was over 17,000+ there in the end.
Ok, now the hard part was over, getting the seats. Now, all we had to do was wait, until 7:30 that night. It seemed like a lifetime away. But, in actuality, it did not seem like we sat there for a grand total of 11 hours. Not at all.
YTV, the television that was sponsoring the concert, was promoting new shows that were going to be in the new season, and they did little shows once every 4 hours to help break up the wait. There was dancing, and singing and I still have the song "PhykoBlast, at YTV! PkykoBlast at YTV! In your face, and cyber space, PhykoBlast at YTV!!" stuck in my head sometimes. The 2nd to the last show was at 5:00, and at the end, the times before, they had recognized the dance choreographer, but, at the 5:00 show, when they said for the choreographer to come out, Hanson came out instead!!
The crowd was going wild and it was uncontrollable. Several times, you could see Taylor or Isaac trying to talk to us thru the microphone system, but the screaming was SO loud, we could not hear a word that they were saying, and it was totally crazy. I remember that Zac's outfit was the cutest in the world. He was wearing a little one-piece thing that looked like a painter's outfit and it was green. He also had his hair pulled back. Isaac was wearing…to be truthful, I forgot what Ike was wearing when they 1st came out, but from when I got my pics back, he was wearing a blue T-shirt and dark pants. Taylor was wearing a black fitted T-shirt with black pants and his hair was down. So was Ike's.
They were only on stage for about 5 minutes. The screaming was SO LOUD that they finally left because they couldn't take it anymore. Now, it was the really really hard part. Waiting until 7:30 to see them again!!
At 7:00, it was the last show that YTV performed. And, actually, at 7:20 Hanson came out again. Only, this time, I was prepared with my video camera and they had changed clothes. Zac was now wearing baggy dark blue jeans and a blue long sleeved shirt that had a zipper halfway down the middle of it. Isaac was now wearing a short sleeved brown shirt and red pants and his hair was pulled back. Taylor was wearing the same thing, and they all looked great.
They did a little 10 minute question and answer session before the concert began. I was disappointed in the questions that some of the fans asked. If they were any fans at all, then they would already know the answers to the questions. But, I got the surprise of my life during the little interview. A few times, Taylor looked over at me, and pointed one time, very briefly. Now, that excited me a little, because Taylor had laid his eyes upon my flesh, and the video camera, of course. I think that's what caught his attention in the first place. Then, I was blown away. As I was zooming up on Taylor, he stares directly at me. I didn't know what to do. I mean, DIRECTLY AT ME!! And you can tell from my footage, that it wasn't someone next to me, in front of me or behind me. He was staring directly at ME!! Then, reality finally hits me, and I began freaking out, I started jumping up and down, and the whole deal "Omigod! Omigod!". Then, I guess because I started over reacting like I did, it caused him to laugh at me, then look over at my friend, and she started to jump up and down too.
Its really funny, because you can see "the stare", see me start jumping, see him laugh at me, look over at my friend, and then you hear us in the back ground. There's me "Omigod!" then Ashley yells "Eye contact! With Taylor" and then we shut up because they were beginning to talk again.
After the interview thing, is when the coolest of all things happens. I guess that the concert was being shown live on YTV and they faded out on Hanson, playing MMMBop in the background, because they started to play MMMBop off of the CD. Everyone started going crazy, because we thought that they were going to sing it. But, they were only setting up for the two acoustic songs. Slowly, MMMBop died off in the background, but everyone started singing it. I still get goosebumps when I watch TT&MON or my home footage or the YTV concert that was aired live in Canada, because it's like, I was there, singing that! And, we went for a really long time too! All the way till the end of the first chorus!! And, you could tell that Hanson loved every second of it. They were waving their arms, clapping with us, and, oh, it was great.
The first song was Madeline, and that's when tragedy strikes. No, I didn't run out of tape, or the battery didn't die on me, the security guards caught me with the video camera. So, I was forced to put the camera away in the bag, but I was sly and still left it record, so I could at least get the sound of the concert on tape, to have forever. After Madeline, was Man from Milwaukee. Then, they went to their instruments, and Zac yelled from behind the drums "Are ya ready for some electric stuff?" It was so cute!!
Then, they played Thinking of You, Where's the Love, and that was the first time that I really heard it live, and they added the part where they quit playing the instruments, except for the drums and encouraged everyone to clap along. Then, they sang A Minute without You, and Taylor made a bad joke out of it. They were talking, and Taylor said "You know, we couldn't make an album, we couldn't be here right now and we could never live a minute without you." And it was really corny and Zac even says "Tay, that was a bad pun" and it was funny. Then they said that it was going to be the last song, because it was a very short concert, and were happy that all of us were a great audience and everything, and they began to sing MMMBop.
At the end of the song, Zac stepped put from behind his drums and poured his water all over his head! It was so cute! Then, Taylor takes his water bottle, and flings all his water out of it into the audience. Of course, everyone goes wild, and we are still cheering for them can clapping and stuff. From where my seat was, you could see backstage and they could see out, and I had thee perfect view of Taylor. I see Ike in the background, and he was waving to people, and then Taylor reaches up, puts his hand to his lips, and blows everyone a huge kiss! It was great!!
Then, they came back out onstage, and they were all wet. I guess that while they were back there, Taylor and Isaac drenched themselves, too. They said that because we were such a great audience that they were going to sing a little bit more for us. They sang the chorus of MMMBop accapella, and then exited the stage.
Well, that was my Hanson Experience, and I would have to say, that I will always remember it for as long as I live!!
Other Hanson Encounters: