Her latest album might feature the serene singer glancing coyly off to one side, but Lady Gaga’s kickoff Joanne World Tour show in Vancouver was anything but soft.
Rogers Arena, with not only a main stage but side stages in the crowd itself, was packed Tuesday night with eager little Monsters, as the pop star calls her fans.
If you didn’t come with glitter, you definitely left covered in it. Like Gaga herself, the fans ranged from demure Joanne-style calm to Monster Ball-esque glitter covered glee.
A countdown screen lifted as the show began and Gaga blasted into view with smoke, strobe lights and a glitter-covered, cowboy-hatted version of Diamond Heart.
The crowd went crazy for the perennial favourite as Gaga slipped into A Perfect Illusion. Then, the show went straight to hell – via a (real and fake) flame-filled version of John Wayne.
The crowd didn’t quiet down all show, as Gaga pulled out favourite after favourite. The night leaned towards old favourites like Just Dance and Alejandro – complete with buff, shirtless backup dancers – punctuated with some newer Joanne hits.
Just Dance started with a keytar performance so consuming that a backup dancer had to hold a mic up to Gaga
Of course, there’s no such thing as a Lady Gaga show in Vancouver during Pride Week without a little love for her LGBTQ fans.
“Excuse me security, can I have that gay pride flag?” Gaga asked, waving the rainbow flag before draping it over a piano chair for a soulful rendition of Come to Mama.
The most touching moment of the night came via the album’s title track, Joanne – named, Gaga told her audience, after her father’s late sister who died in 1974. Wearing a jacket made by her sister, it was a family affair.
The show revved up with Bad Romance, albeit with some rather random pyrotechnics, before ending on what was probably the most exciting new song of the night – A Million Reasons.
The 60-date Joanne World Tour continues in Edmonton on Thursday before swinging down to Washington State on Saturday. Click here for more dates and tickets.