Sara Bareilles hosts emotional concert in UPMC Events Center

The Amidst the Chaos Tour comes to Moon Township


Jonah Hoy

Sara Bareilles performing at the UPMC Events Center. Moon, PA. November 15, 2019. RMU Sentry Media/Jonah Hoy.

Jonah Hoy, Contributor

MOON TOWNSHIP — From love songs to tales about an ordinary waitress, Sara Bareilles brought her own style to the UPMC Events Center Friday night with a star studded show from start to finish. 

The opening act for the night was Emily King, dressed in black from head to toe and ready to groove. While on stage, she found unique ways to present her soulful pop persona for the crowd. She didn’t waste any time kicking it into high gear to warm up the crowd for the main event. 

Dancing with high energy and allowing her intense charisma to flow through the venue, her natural talent for the stage began to infect the audience and prepared then for a night full of music. King displayed elements of pop, hip hop, rock, and indie, but found a way to make it flow well together. 

King belted out the last notes to a drawn out wail, and with a huge smile on her face, said “Pittsburgh, are you ready? Are you ready for Sara Bareilles?”

Jonah Hoy
Emily King performing at the UPMC Events Center. Moon, PA. November 15, 2019. RMU Sentry Media/Jonah Hoy.

Before even touching the keys, Bareilles began to thank the crowd for their support shedding light on the acclaimed singer and songwriter. Remembering to humble herself, she expressed how lucky she was to have the audience with her that night.

As Bareilles began to play, everyone became ecstatic and started to sing along with the performer. No one could help but start to move and feed off the energy. 

About three songs into the show, she started harmonizing to herself while singing a little melody. She then raised her hands into the air and hit the intro to “Love Song,” the artist’s most popular track. 

Aside from Sara’s wonderful vocals, her humor and banter with herself was just as good as the music. At one point, while trying to transition to a new song, she tried to make a joke but ended up screwing up the punchline.

“Wow guys I really s*** the bed on that one,” joked Bareilles. “Maybe I should just play the damn song?” She showed sides of herself that no one thought this show would provide, making the night even more special for the audience.

Jonah Hoy
Sara Bareilles performing at the UPMC Events Center. Moon, PA. November 15, 2019. RMU Sentry Media/Jonah Hoy.

About halfway through the performance, she transitioned into the music she wrote for the musical “Waitress,” the Broadway hit about an ordinary woman. Playing lost hits that didn’t make the final cut of the show, the intimacy with the crowd began to reach an alltime high.

Bareilles went on to do something she has never done at any other show before: bring a special guest on stage. She brought out 15 year old Adrian Escalona, a resident of Pittsburgh who Bareilles had met online, to sing one of her songs from Waitress. Hoping to make his Broadway dreams come true, she shared another intimate moment with Pittsburgh and Escalona as emotions continued to raise through the roof.

In one of the final moments before the show concluded, Bareilles began her performance of “She Used to be Mine” from her hit musical. A sad but melancholy ballad of the main characters realization of herself, the performance saw the audience pull out their cell phones and wave to the beat. A sea of white lights filled the building for one final song, giving everyone in the UPMC Events Center another memory they aren’t soon to forget.