Pink returns to the stage after her recent illness with as much attitude and energy as she had all those years ago.
First support ‘Churchill’ are obviously very inexperienced at performing in big venues, vocalist Bethany Kelly is one of the most awkward singers I’ve seen on stage. Their music is non-offensive and more suitable to an episode of Glee. Meanwhile second support ‘Walk The Moon’ are more confident in this atmosphere, their indie pop a perfect crowd starter. Frontman Nicholas Petricca shows glimpses of star potential while bouncing around his keyboard, and these guys are certainly ones to watch for the future.
Pink’s show starts off with an Andy Kaufman type (The ringmaster) wandering around in a sparkly suit like an extra from Beetlejuice. Then the 33-year-old energetically kicks her show with into gear with ‘Raise Your Glass’ – hanging upside down by a bungee rope attached to three half-naked men. This sets the tone for her show; part concert, part burlesque show and part gymnastic showcase.
It’s hard to believe the woman born as Alecia Beth Moore had to cancel her Birmingham show two days previous due to an ear infection when she’s singing love while spinning around in an open metal cage (with nothing but a crash mat for protection).
All the dancers and tricks can look gimmicky but Pink has the talent to back it up. She isn’t afraid to sing live throughout the show, even when hanging upside down and spinning around. By the end of it you’re so impressed with her physical prowess it’s hard to care how much of the sings weight is carried by her backing singers. The most impressive moment of the night has to be when she performs the contemporary dance routine to ‘Try’ (as seen in the music video) while singing with as much emotion as she does on record.
It isn’t all about high flying wires and modern dance though, she kicks it into the crowd surrounded stage for acoustic versions of ‘Who Knew’, James Taylor’s ‘Fire and Rain’, a piano version of ‘The Great Escape’ and a surprising version of Chris Isaak’s ‘Wicked Game’. Not only does she scream talent she also comes across as incredibly likable, putting on fluffy backpacks and signing fans artwork too.
The set list is for everyone, a medley of her old 90’s hits and fan favourites (although ‘Get The Party Started’ surprisingly absent of the set list). The highlight is encore ‘So What’, sung in a tutu she bounds across the whole arena on a high wire and over the crowd’s heads.
Stars like Lady Gaga and Katy Perry could learn a thing or two from Pink. She puts on a real show (with a story) without coming across as pretentious. You won’t hear her her vocals slip in the name of choreography either, no chance of that.