TORONTO -- If there's another white woman on the planet as soulful as Annie Lennox please let me know.
The striking-looking, awesome-sounding 52-year-old solo artist and sometime frontwoman for '80s synth-pop-dance duo Eurythmics is about as deep as they come.
She even demanded her sold-out audience last night at Massey Hall clap "like the groovy people do it" during Sisters are Doin' it for Themselves and "not like the white folks."
From the very start of her far-too-quick hour-and-25-minute show, Lennox let the crowd know she wasn't going to disappoint, kicking off with a powerful trio of hits from her solo career -- her cover of No More I Love You's and her own Little Bird and Walking on Broken Glass.
And just in case anyone had forgotten about her groundbreaking video work, it was on full display behind Lennox and her seven-piece band on a large rectangular video screen during almost every song. (Yes, that's House's Hugh Laurie in the Dangerous Liasons-like video for Walking on Broken Glass!)
Still, it was hard to take your eyes off the pale-skinned and luminous looking Lennox, dressed down (for her) in a black sequined tank top, black stovepipe pants and black high heeled boots with simple makeup and cropped blond hair.
She's such an enchanting performer, whether she was fluttering her hands about her face during standout ballads Cold and Why, or happily swinging her hips during dance songs Walking, and the Eurythmics' There Must Be an Angel, Thorn in My Side, When Tomorrow Comes and Sweet Dreams, the latter which finally had the audience on its feet.
And when she took over piano alone to perform Eurythmics' Here Comes the Rain, Sisters and her own A Thousand Beautiful Things, she was in total control of the audience.
Lennox is a very direct performer whose intense gaze seldom wavers.
The new material, from her latest solo album, Songs of Mass Destruction, was also uniformly strong, whether it was the first single, Dark Road, the equally powerful Smithereens, the more uptempo Ghost in My Machines or the HIV-AIDS awareness anthem, Sing, which was backed by startling statistics and images from South Africa on the video screen and followed by a passionate speech by Lennox.
"The world is so f--ked up," she said. "And by doing this (activism), I feel better about myself."