City: Toronto, Canada.
Venue: Air Canada Centre.
01. Highway Unicorn (Road to Love)
02. Government Hooker
03. Born This Way
04. Black Jesus † Amen Fashion
05. Bloody Mary
06. Bad Romance
08. Fashion of His Love
09. Just Dance
13. Electric Chapel
14. Heavy Metal Lover
15. Bad Kids
16. Yoü and I
17. Born This Way (Piano Version)
19. Poker Face
23. The Edge of Glory
24. Marry the Night
One of the reasons that I went to Europe last year was because I was moving to Canada for quite a long time, and who knows when I will be able to go there again anytime soon? So, after making the whole paperwork to travel to Canada, I began to check out which cool concerts there was going to be in Toronto.
After touring the whole 2012 in Asia, Oceania and Europe, Lady Gaga finally announced her North American tour and Toronto was included! At first, I bought a ticket only for the second show because the first one was completely sold out; but after a while, I decided to test my luck and get a ticket for the first concert through a re-seller website (StubHub)… Not everyday Lady Gaga performs near you. In fact, the re-sold ticket cost me less than the original price! #Win
The day of the concert had arrived and so did the huge Snow-Storm “Nemo”… The streets were totally collapsed, the public transport system was a complete chaos with terrible delays and I had to go Downtown which is one hour away from where I live, great! Since I didn’t have classes that day, I was able to go out earlier in order to arrive on time to the Arena; it took me one hour more than usual to get there. Once I entered the Air Canada Centre, I did a quick overview of the place and grabbed a quick lunch! The whole place was crowded with “Little Monsters”, some of them were very edgy by dressing up like the Mother Monster herself (weird outfits, wigs, heels, everything)! :S Very awkward haha. Also, there were about four shops with official Lady Gaga merchandise, and while I wasn’t going to buy anything, I did want the Tour Book, but oddly enough, it wasn’t on sale for the 2013 shows 😥 Anyways, it was quarter to 9 and I went to my seat, for my surprise, I was closer to the stage than I thought (taking as a reference the chart in Ticketmaster); in fact, the Air Canada Centre is not that big, even in the upper 300 sections you can see fine! I think it’s even smaller than the Rogers Arena in Vancouver.
The lights went off and the curtain revealed the Castle which was her stage setup. The show began with “Highway Unicorn” with a group of dancers coming out from the castle holding black flags that had white “G.O.A.T.” initials written on them. Another crew of dancers came out under a fake horse shell; it turns out that Lady Gaga was on top of the “horse” wearing a black mask and that’s when she began to sing. They walked all through the V-Shaped catwalk and when the song was about to end, they returned to the main stage and hid inside the castle. After that, a plastic 3-D model of Gaga’s head descended from the ceiling saying that an alien has escaped the facilities and it was time to start the operation “Kill the Bitch”! hahaha. That was the intro of the show and Lady Gaga came out dressed up like a character from the “Alien” movie and began to sing “Government Hooker”, which was a very sexual S&M performance; then, it was followed by “Born This Way”: an air-inflated balloon came out of the castle, which then I realized it was a vagina because Gaga began to moan like she was giving birth… Really?
The first highlight for me was the performance of “Bloody Mary”, a dark track that could’ve easily been included in the “Fame Monster” album. Gaga came out dressed as a nun, all in white, and rolled through the whole stage (she was standing on top of this remote controlled base on wheels), which was pretty cool, actually. After this performance, an extended intro of “Bad Romance” began to sound and when the actual song began to play, the crowd went wild! But the performance itself was OK, nothing special but I really thanked that she made the same original choreography, nothing “crazy”. Few songs later, my other two favorite tracks came in: “Electric Chapel” & “Heavy Metal Lover”; the first one was pretty cool that featured Gaga dancing inside of a plastic color-illuminated cube. The second song used the same wheel remote controlled technique as “Bloody Mary”, but this time it was a motorcycle that rolled through the catwalk while Gaga was laying down on the seat with a female dancer on top of her doing erotic moves… kinky!
It was time of another speech, this one was longer. Yes, Lady Gaga talks too much in her shows, even between the songs… take it down a notch, I’d say. So she talked about how her first hit single “Just Dance” went to the top of the charts and that it became #1 in Canada first, not in the USA or anywhere else! *audience cheers* Then she spoke about how five years ago she was a simple waitress in New York City and suddenly she became this worldwide superstar and how that changed her life. As usual, she talked about self-esteem and self-confidence by saying (something like this): “A lot of people wonder and say: who is this Lady Gaga? With her crazy outfits, her crazy hair and makeup and her gay dance music…” *audience cheers and little monsters lose it, again*, she kept talking about how she believed in herself and everything along that line when out of the blue, she talks to a fan and at first I thought she was mocking him (she told him something about his mother), but then she mixed it with the next song “Bad Kids”.
Obviously she couldn’t miss to include her infamous “meat dress”. After the “Mexican (?) Marriage” interlude, she came out standing on a hanger surrounded by several big pieces of meat and began to perform “Americano”. “Poker Face” was up next and it continued the meat theme but this time with more dancers involved, and at the end Gaga was put inside a meat mixer and got “crushed” while she finished singing. Too bad this song was a shortened version, and it’s one of her biggest hits! In fact, there were a lot of songs that were edited out in short versions of two minutes or so… why? 😦 Telephone and LoveGame were one of those. After “Alejandro” (dedicated to her biggest fans), came in her other hit: “Paparazzi”, and although Lady Gaga did begin to sing right from the beginning, she didn’t appear on stage until the middle of the song, that was pretty weird! Meanwhile, the cameras were focusing several fans from the front rows singing the tune.
“I can’t speak Canadian but I can if you like” were the first words of the last song before the encore: “Schiebe”. When it ended, there was a big pause on stage, the lights were off and nothing was happening. Many people began to leave their seats and I wondered if the show was really over… It passed like ten minutes (long time for a pause in the show with nothing going on) when suddenly some background lights lit up. After a lot of anticipation, the spotlight hit the top corner of the castle and Lady Gaga appeared wearing a weird cheap pajama playing some keys of the piano and shouting to the audience to sing along with her to her next song which was “The Edge of Glory”.
Now I thought that the show was really over, but no, the same thing happened: we were left in the dark for a while, some people left and Gaga came out again. This time, she picked some fans from the “Monster Pit” and asked them to join her on stage :O the five little monsters were literally losing their shit, crying, screaming and hugging Gaga xD. After that emotional moment, she began to sing an acoustic/acapella version of “Marry the Night” and throughout the middle of the song, finally the uptempo version kicked in! 😀 After that, the show was finished for real because all the Arena lights were turned on, some background music began to play and the whole crowd began to exit the place like a stampede.
Overall, I did enjoy the show and while it’s not that TERRIBLE as many people say it is; it’s not the BEST show either as other people say… Gaga could’ve done much more and better; I believe the Monster Ball had more stuff going on. While the song selection was really great, I found the set-list to be a big mess and each song gets it’s own “segment” or act, so there are a lot of crazy stuff going on and it changed abruptly with each song that it’s really hard to follow what’s going on… I don’t even know if we were supposed to understand a “story” or a “theme” behind all this? If we had to, I clearly didn’t get it. Also, what I found out was that the Castle was actually a Spaceship?! What?! Yeah, and that Lady Gaga is an alien that came to Earth to suck all our brains and gather information for another race (she told us that during one of her speeches, I couldn’t have guessed that by myself, haha). Also, I totally hated the backup tracks, I know she sings live but it’s not actually 100% live, it’s what Beyoncé and other singers do: a backup track of the song while the actual live singing is only a few lines or verses and a lot of shouts, lol. “The Edge of Glory” was the most obvious lip synched song: she turns around, walks and does some random movements while the lead vocals keep on playing in the background… Seriously?
Attaching some videos from YouTube since I didn’t bring my camera: