Katy Perry – July 19, 2011 – Rogers Arena
On the last night of the Canadian leg of her California Dreams Tour, Katy Perry pulled out all the stops to make sure the sold out Rogers Arena audience had an amazingly fun night. The funhouse atmosphere was alive from the moment one walked into the venue, the audience was ready for fun, dressed up with many wearing Electric Blue or Pink wigs, flashing headbands and wands abounded too. In the stands flashing light cotton candy was being consumed by already hyper tweens and the whole arena smelled like cotton candy and cupcakes!
Support acts Janelle Monae and DJ Skeet Skeet got the crowd excited as the arena filled with a surprisingly diverse demographic. Mom’s and Dad’s with their kids, friends of all ages came to have a good time and indeed they did.
A video vignette started off the show and set the stage for the “Candy-fornia” Dreams theme of the night, then Katy appeared amongst the lollipops and candy floss covered stage to hit the ground running with hit single Teenage Dreams, which had the audience on their feet singing and dancing for the next two hours. I’ve been to a lot of shows where the audience sang along, mostly to the chorus, however I can’t remember hearing so many songs sung so enthusiastically from start to finish by the audience. Katy could have easily put the mic down during ‘Hot n Cold’, ‘I Kissed A Girl’ and ‘Firework’ to let the crowd take over. The video carried on the story during costume changes, costumes ranged from Vegas Showgirl to Cartoon Damsel and everything bright and colourful inbetween!
I sometimes criticize artists for talking too much or not enough during their shows, Katy talked a lot but it was so interactive and seemingly ad-libbed that it included the audience and kept the ‘party’ going. It made her seem even more of the crazy, wacky artist she is known to be and kept the audience involved in the show. Even coming out across the floor on a ‘floating cloud’ to perform for the fans at the opposite end.
In other parts of the show she demonstrated that she was more then just goofy, frivolity when she did a segment of ‘Katy karaoke’ and sung adaptations of other artists work. Rihanna’s ‘Only Girl In The World”, Rebecca Black’s “Friday” and Willow Smith’s “I Whip My Hair Back And Forth” which were interspersed with commentary on how much she loved Canada and Canadians. I don’t think she needed to build up her fan base any more, this show sold out very quickly and as she mentioned all of her Number 1 singles happened in Canada first. In another example of audience interaction she chose and brought a
“Canadian Boyfriend” up onstage from the audience to tease and flirt with before sending him back with the threat that her husband was in the building. Although scripted, she came off as genuine and sincere. During the cover of Whitney Houston’s ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody’ she had a number of fans from the audience up onstage to dance with her and her background dancers, I’m sure making unbelievable memories for these young people!
Judging by the number of very young audience members I’m sure she made a lasting memory on a great many first-time concert goers. She made a good memory on this many-time concert goer! I look forward to seeing her again!