August 18, 2013 | by Joey DiGuglielmo
Miss Ross wows at Wolf Trap
Diana Ross at Wolf Trap Wednesday night. (Blade photo by Joey DiGuglielmo)

Diana Ross at Wolf Trap Wednesday night. (Blade photo by Joey DiGuglielmo)

Diana Ross was in fine form Wednesday night when her summer tour touched down at Wolf Trap. It was her first appearance in the D.C. area since playing the Strathmore in 2010.

The show found the legendary Motown vet giving just about the same set list she provided last time. While die hards would have loved a little more variety, casual fans ate up the hit-heavy romp. And yes, it was the gay high holy day one would expect. The D.C. gays were out in full force, even a subdued-looking Jerry Van Hook, undoubtedly gathering inspiration for his next Shi-Queeta routine.

And though it’s hard to pinpoint exactly what the difference was, Ross seemed more engaged with the proceedings than other times I’ve seen her. She smiled constantly and seemed genuinely glad to be there, flitting about in a seemingly endless array of sequined gowns. Just before the hard-to-tell-if-it-was-planned-or-spontaneous encore (“Reach Out and Touch,” performed in what appeared to be backstage loungewear), Ross said she’s dealing with empty nest syndrome and an open schedule. “This isn’t work for me,” she said.

Her hour-and-25-minute set — aided considerably from a tight band including stellar horn section — was:

1. I’m Coming Out
2. More Today Than Yesterday
3. My World is Empty Without You
4. Baby Love
5. Stop! in the Name of Love
6. You Can’t Hurry Love
7. Touch Me in the Morning
8. Love Child
9. The Boss
10. Upside Down
11. Love Hangover/Take Me Higher
12. Ease on Down the Road
13. The Look of Love
14. Don’t Explain
15. Why Do Fools Fall in Love
16. Smile For Me (BGVs)
17. Do You Know/Ain’t No Mountain
18. I Will Survive
* Survive reprise
19. Reach Out and Touch (encore)
* Survive reprise

Joey DiGuglielmo is the Features Editor for the Washington Blade.

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