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THE Rufus Wainwright live experience is anything other than boring.
"I don't understand a lot of performers today who just make no connection with their audience. I find it fascinating. People pay good money, don't bore them!"
The performer is touring theatre venues across the UK and stopped off at Warrington's Parr Hall on Tuesday.
The tour is in support of his album Release the Stars, which features collaborations with folk legend Richard Thompson and Pet Shop Boy Neil Tennant.
Wainwright, son of 60s folk stars Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle, explains however, that collaborating with his favourite artists is not that new to him.
"My whole life I have been blessed with regards to that side of things. Even when I was a kid we used to sing songs as a family with people like Emmylou Harris. I'm really grateful for that."
"I really enjoyed the collaborations on this new record though. Richard Thompson is my all time favourite guitarist, he's so unique. And Neil and me have been friends for years, so it was just great to hang out again and spend the day quoting and quipping!"
Despite having friends in high places, Wainwright has never lost touch with his audience, even giving fans a chance to join him onstage with an Internet competition.
Rufus has been selecting fans five days prior to gigs on this tour based on audition tapes posted on the website YouTube, to join him onstage to perform the spoken word section to the song Between my Legs.
"We've had so many variations of people get up; solo performers, big groups, drag queens... I have to say though the crazier the better!"
"I learnt early on not too take my shows and myself too seriously. It's not like I'm working in a factory! Things could be a lot worse so why not be happy and enjoy it."