STANDARD EXAMINER
Return to Lindsey Stirling

Can Lindsey Stirling rock the violin, or what?


By Nathan Beeston

Standard-Examiner TX correspondent

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 9:38am

There I was in the middle of the crowded concert floor, jumping up and down and pumping my fist with the rest of the crowd as the loud, exciting music played.

On stage, the bright, colorful lights flashed as the star of the show captured the entire crowd, dancing vibrantly while performing her quick, exhilarating and exciting music. In her hands was ... no, not a microphone, but ... a violin?

Yep, you read that right. Her name is Lindsey Stirling, and she can definitely rock a concert.

Lindsey Stirling is a performing violinist currently on her first-ever U.S. concert tour, visiting 24 cities across the country. Stirling started playing the violin at age 5 and always wanted to be a performer. She grew up in Arizona but now lives in Provo and was a quarter-finalist on the fifth season of “America’s Got Talent” in 2010.

Stirling’s music became very popular after her music videos were placed on YouTube, where her incredible talents of mixing the violin with modern music and dancing were viewed and shared. If you check out her channel, lindseystomp, she has a whopping 895,577 subscribers (as of the writing of this article) and a grand total of 148,868,365 video views!

Many of the violinist’s videos are filmed in Utah, but others have been shot all over including New York, New Zealand and Africa.

One thing I love about Stirling’s music is she plays so many different things it makes it really fun to listen to. She writes incredibly good original music but also does amazing covers of popular songs, and, surprisingly, also plays some sound tracks to movies and video games.

Stirling’s concert on Oct. 11 at In The Venue in Salt Lake City opened with The Vibrant Sound, a band that did a really good job of getting us excited and into the music. After they finished and took down all their equipment, it was time for Lindsey to come out. The fog machines poured out their thick smoke, the colorful lights turned on and the crowd went wild as the star of the show started to whip out her wonderful songs on her violin.

Stirling played some of her really good songs, including “Shadows,” “Elements” and her dubstep/violin song, “Crystallize.” Her performance of her song “Electric Daisy Violin” was really fast, upbeat and exciting. For another number, she put on a single white glove and played some of Michael Jackson’s music! The whole crowd went crazy when Stirling announced she would play the music of the “Skyrim” video game, made really intense with its loud chanting and great voice work, and some of the sound track to “The Lord of the Rings,” which was done beautifully.

The violinist also introduced her cover of Rihanna’s “We Found Love”; she had the opportunity to film the music video in Kenya and perform it for some people who had never even heard the violin before. Stirling was so impressed by how happy the people there were and how grateful they were for what they had, she decided to change the song’s lyrics about “We found love in a hopeless place” to “We found love in a whole new place,” reflecting what she learned from the people there.

Midway through the song, Stirling suddenly surprised me — she put down her violin and started to sing the lyrics herself. Not only can she dance and play the violin, but she can sing too! She is one extremely talented musician. During her performances she not only moonwalked but bent over backwards while still playing her fast music.

At one point, Stirling pulled out the microphone and said that as she worked toward her dream, many people weren’t supportive. “A lot of people told me that it wasn’t really marketable,” she said, and the crowd joined in shouts of “No!” and “Boo!” Stirling said she was turned down by many record labels before her YouTube success, but now, here she was, in spite of all the people who criticized and said that her dreams were totally unrealistic.

For her last performance, Stirling and the musician on the electric piano came out from backstage wearing familiar face masks — they were going to play “Phantom of the Opera”! It started with the slow, piercing opening solo on the violin, then the piano burst in and the fast, dramatic music flowed out. The song was amazing and made a great finale for the concert.

I was kind of sad that such a good concert had to come to an end. My friends and I drove back home and talked about our favorite parts of the event. I had the time of my life, and I was so happy I went. Lindsey Stirling is one amazing musician — whoever knew a singing, dancing, hip-hop violinist could put on such a show?

Nathan Beeston is a junior at Syracuse High School. He loves swim team, writing and life guarding, and is always up for making new friends. Contact him at bcbeeston@comcast.net.

VIDEO: Watch Lindsey Stirling perform "Elements"