From our Level 5 seats inside Adelaide Oval we are face to face with an image of Adele’s perfectly made up eyes. The image, with a flamboyant sunset above, is supernatural.
About ten minutes after the expected start time, we notice a lone roadie carefully wheeling a large amp box through the crowd to centre stage. “Bet she’s in there,” my friend and I speculate.
Then the eyes open up wide as Adele appears on stage. It is a sensational moment. She looks gorgeous with signature makeup, natural flowing hair and a sparkling-shiraz gown.
“I’m talking so much because I’m nervous,” she soon tells the 70,000 fans who have flocked to see her perform live. I am surprised by her easy banter with the audience; it is like she is sitting on the couch having a one-to-one chat with each of us. She says this is her first open air concert experience, says she really prefers smaller venues and apologises for paddling on and her “potty mouth.” At one stage, during an untimely power failure, she invites jokes from the audience. And she has personally taped a letter to a seat way up in one of the stands, “… just a bit of silly stuff about me, and an email address to write back to me – only if you want to.”
Whether singing massive pop ballads, or making droll comedy while sipping hot honey between songs, Adele is charismatic, funny, natural. Even ‘Kiss Cam’ – where couples perform happily when the camera lands on them – is a hit and the crowd screams with delight when a couple of boys share a big pash!
With charm and humility, it seems she really is having a good time, and when not sharing information about the songs, she calls on the audience for support in hitting her high notes. To be sure there is a bit of echo around the stadium but the genuine joyfulness of the evening outweighs any complaints about sound quality. Adele later volunteers that someone had accidently pulled a plug while the big stage was revolving. To this she bursts into cackles of laughter.
One forgets about the likely strain on her amazing vocal cords, her probable jet lag, her possible anxiety about baby son and entourage, unpredictable weather and power outages, and the effort of remaining upbeat on stage for over two hours. Adele is an amazing entertainer, coming across as a relaxed friend.
For someone who specialises in sad songs, her concert in Adelaide is a very happy affair and I will add those 21 and 25 studio albums to my collection.