Fun question for you guys today: What is your maximum limit for turnarounds? How many times does a group have to repeat the chorus of a song for you to get to the point where you’re inwardly groaning, “No, not ANOTHER encore”?
I max out at around three myself. And part of it depends on the song. Three encores of “Boundless Love” or “Still Feelin’ Fine,” I can live with, but for some reason “A Few Good Men” was ruined for me by what seemed like an infinite number of encores, even though it may have been no more than three.
The only way I can tolerate more is if something else interesting is going at the same time. Take, for example, the multiple encores of “Heaven’s Joy Awaits” on the Together video (I think it gets up to around four or five). It could get downright maddening without the visual element, but the visual element enables all sorts of funny business to keep the audience entertained: Ernie runs across the stage, Ernie nearly falls off the stage (thereby giving away the fact that heavy stacks are being used since his voice comes through loud and clear at that moment), Bill goes and plays the piano with Gordon Mote (providing another clue of stacks since there is mysteriously still more than one bass voice in the mix), Bill goes down into the audience to “direct” the guys, etc., etc. If you can get into the show, you can emerge with your sanity intact after the fifth encore.
But I would not recommend more than three for an ordinary concert, because as much as an audience enjoys a song, they will begin to tire at a certain point. An encore or two can be a great way to keep up the energy, but it’s better to stop when the audience is still enjoying the song than to keep going until they’re sick of it.
Still, I’d like to hear from my readers: What’s your “threshold?”