, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Okay, guys. Today’s the day. We’ve successfully kept it under wraps for 5 months and 37 posts. We’ve forced the very exuberant fan girls in us to the back burner (except here and here) in the interest of appearing moderately sane on the Internet.

But the day has finally come to talk about… Darren Criss.

You may have noticed (oh ye five loyal followers) that we didn’t post this Tuesday. This is because we were anticipating the following life-changing event, and knew it would warrant a joint post today.

Last night we attended the Toronto show for Darren Criss’s Listen Up Tour. Um, and it was kind of awesome. And by ‘kind of’ we mean it blew our freaking minds.

Minds being blown!

Minds being blown!

We don’t usually gush about Darren in public, but when we do, we feel a visual component is necessary for you to truly understand.

This is what we looked like when we battled for tickets last month:Angry GIF

Waiting in line yesterday we looked like this:Be cool GIF

But actually felt like this…excited gif

Once inside, to keep our spot in the crowd we tried to be like this:how dare you gif

But looked more like this…nervous gifs

And when he finally came out on stage we feared we would look like this:

crying GIF

But in the end, looked more like this…

awwwww gif

In a feat that surprised no one, in ninety minutes Darren flawlessly mapped out his journey encompassing his short, but wild ride in the public eye.

It wasn’t real until he came out and belted, “It’s the Circle of Liiiiifffffeeeee!” As if we weren’t excited enough already, Darren went straight for the heart by opening the show with Disney. Clever boy.photo-3

After we figured out how to breathe again, we sang along to some old hits and pretended to know the words to some new tunes as well. Until…

…He sat down at the piano and hit that iconic first note of Not Alone.

And then we DIED.

Just kidding. But we did hold hands. Pfft, no we didn’t. Well…maybe for a second. Keep that between us, yeah?

In a collective appreciation and adoration for perhaps his most iconic number, the audience—not Darren—sang the first verse. And made us feel, for the millionth time, like we all belonged.

photoAbout half way through the show, in classic Darren fashion, he grabbed a stool, his guitar, and sent the band backstage. In tribute to his café-playing days, Darren started strumming Human, a song he wrote when he was just fifteen years old. Having only ever heard this song on our iPods, it was mesmerizing to see him just a few feet in front of us, perform this song on stage.

However, the best surprise of the night was the Starkid classic To Have a Home. We’d like to present this number with the “Oh this is what Swooning Feels Like, This is Real Life, Where Am I, Am I Still Breathing, Oh Right I’m at a Concert, SHH, Darren’s Singing!’ Award.

As for his new songs, the jazzy Words was a call back to his earlier roots, while the others seemed to be inspired by his Glee success, and pulled him into pop territory. The catchy, upbeat Any of Those Things could easily be a Top 40 hit. And the nostalgic Once Upon a Time, a tribute to the days when Darren could only dream of the kind of success he’s found in recent years, was perhaps the most poignant and personal moment of the evening. The lyrics awakened the dreamers in us, and spread a reassurance that maybe we were living our own Once Upon a Times right now.photo-1

In his encore he paid tribute to the song that shot him to stardom by amalgamating the pop cover and his own stripped-down version of Teenage Dream.  And for some reason, hearing this final number made it real all over again. Aka, we died for real this time.

Ending as he began, Darren harkened back to a simpler time when he was known for nothing more than Disney covers on YouTube.

Before we knew it he took his final bow, and it was all over. But hey, that’s just The Circle of Life.

So, basically, to sum up… BEST NIGHT EVER. We love Darren Criss, and you should too. The End.

-K & A

Follow us @WeArtsy