We had pit tickets for the show, a special area in between the main and B stage, and despite arriving quite late we managed to get a spot on the red carpet which went down the middle between both stages. After reading countless tour spoilers, I knew that it was potentially one of the best places to stand and for us it indeed did pay off! (More on that later on...).
Ella Henderson was due to be the support act but a few days before we were told that she would be replaced by Lawson for this night. To be honest I couldn't have been happier as I am a big fan of theirs and hadn't seen them live since August! Their set was brilliant and they received a really good crowd reaction. They performed their hits When She Was Mine, Taking Over Me, Standing in the Dark, Brokenhearted, Juliet and their new single Roads.
|All roads lead to Lawson...|
|Andy and Ryan doing their thing|
Finally it was time for Take That! Normally at a concert, the lights go down and that signifies the start of the show however Take That always build up the suspense to the spectacle ahead by having a mini show involving some of the cast members which sets the tone for the rest of the night!
Once the music kicked in, they opened with I Like It, which involved a routine around the entire main and B stage with the cast. It's hard to know where to focus your attention as there is so much going on around you, it's extremely overwhelming and I for one am really pleased that I'm going to see the show again as you simply cannot take it all in the first time!
|Mark and some of the cast during I Like It|
The set was over two hours long and featured some of my favourite songs including Get Ready For It (combine Howard banging a drum and intense fire flames and I really wasn't okay tbqh haha!!) and Said It All (which in my eyes is one of their most underrated songs). One of the stand out performances for me was Flaws, which features Gary's haunting vocals and a stunning contemporary dance from Howard and Mark. I don't usually like that type of dancing but it was genuinely beautiful. I must also mention the amazing Portrait, in which they drove around the arena in a flying car. Of course, the classic songs are always the biggest crowd pleasers, with Could It Be Magic and Pray getting rapturous applause especially when the dance moves were dusted off!!!
|flying over the crowd!|
I mentioned earlier about spoilers implying that the red carpet was a good place to stand and I can confirm that was true! During Relight My Fire, the crowd were split in order to clear the red carpet and we were held back by a rope and burly security men. However that didn't stop us from getting to touch Gary, Howard and Mark's hands as they walked through the crowd! I was genuinely so excited to be in such close contact despite having met them before haha! On the topic of spoilers - I'm a sucker for them. I never have the patience to wait and be surprised! I like to know what's being sung, who does what, every costume change and other little detail and some people think this spoils the show but it really doesn't. Despite knowing the set list and biggest spoilers, it enhanced my experience as I was prepared for the red carpet scenario and got to stand in one of the best places. Also reading people's tweets etc really does not compare to the real thing - it is such a breathtaking show that watching all the spoilers in the world could never live up to what I actually witnessed in the Genting Arena.
|the ever beautiful Howard!|
The boys performed These Days and Rule The World to "end the show", with the promise of a "well rehearsed encore if we cheered loud enough" - considering the arena was full to the brim of Thatters, it didn't take long for them to reappear and perform Shine, before finishing with the ultimate classic Never Forget. There is literally no better feeling in the world than watching Take That perform that song - it doesn't matter where or who you are, every single member of the audience will always raise their arms during the chorus and it is quite a marvellous sight!
To end the night on a high, as we were leaving the arena we bumped into Carmen, a fellow Kingsland fan who was trying to meet Lawson outside. As we were chatting, I turned around and noticed a lad chatting to a small group of girls - it was only Joel! He was so lovely and stopped for a photo with us.
|my goals - a smiley pic with Joel!|
|a breathtaking show - nobody does it better!|
I really urge anyone to go and see them - whether you're a fan or not, I don't doubt that you will leave feeling in awe at the phenomenal production. Their set is incredibly inspiring - they are men in their forties yet perform such a physically demanding show. I felt real admiration looking at what they had achieved - in their previous stadium shows they've had enormous robots and elephants to create the wow factor, whilst this time round they've toned it down to suit an arena setting yet still manage to take your breath away.
I write this as I'm waiting for the train to Manchester, really hyped for round 2 on Saturday - I haven't felt so excited about a concert in a long time!
Hwyl am y tro ✌️