Take That: Wonderland Live Review

It’s no secret that Take That are renowned for the spectacles that are their stage shows, and their latest tour, aptly titled ‘Wonderland’ was no exception.

Titled the same as their most recent studio album, Wonderland Live was enigmatic in what it will consist of and was truly fit to the Take That form. From a sitar player on a magic carpet to acrobatics, men fighting on stilts to an array of extraordinary headgear, the show really did capture all aspects of the imagination, and filled the whole of the massive O2 Arena.

Accompanying Take That was ‘90s pop group ‘All Saints’, who offered impeccable harmonies accompanied with a badass attitude throughout their set. Although their staging was not as visually striking in comparison to Take That’s, the four-part group filled the space with their perfected vocals and dancing (which was the show's salvation from some of the comedic dad dancing that I later had to endure watching). If I am completely honest, All Saints, like Take That, are a bit before my time, and I had originally only bought these tickets for my mum (like the top daughter I am), but I still really enjoyed their set as a whole, as well as their performances and vocals.

As the lights darkened after a short interval, the storytelling began with excellent use of the screens that surround the central, circular stage. At this point, the visual wonders of the show truly began, and I will not go into too much detail as, for me, the element of surprise truly made the evening incredible.

Every aspect of the show was perfected to the very best level, including the vocals, which were definitely at their best. From solos to harmonies, not a single word was out of key or place. It’s no lie that I didn’t know a majority of the songs (but in my defence, I was only born in 1996), yet could still enjoy their well-rehearsed vocals and overall showmanship. On top of this, even when the group were beneath the stage changing their outfits, their vocals were in no way hindered, which left me beyond astonished.

Captivating choreography was skilfully performed by the accompanying dancers, and intertwined with an array of breath-taking acrobatics and stilt walking. Gary, Howard and Mark even partook in some of the acrobatics, and this truly did make the performances even better (and redeems them from the dad-dancing). The fact that they can maintain steady vocals whilst dangling within the sky is beyond what many performers can achieve, and was stunning.

As mentioned above, the staging was central within the venue, as well as circular, which, despite many people's scepticism, did ensure great views from around the venue. Although I was in fact standing, the images I saw from people sat on the top tier of the venue looked equally stunning, and the use of technical elements had a large part to play within this.

The lighting and effects were truly enchanting throughout and really made the show feel more like a musical or art-piece, as opposed to a gig. One part of the show that had me frozen still to the spot in utter awe was the absolutely jaw-dropping water-feature that complimented and added a whole new depth to The Flood, and this is something that I will not forget for a long time. Having previously been to the O2 many times, I never knew it was capable of achieving so much within the venue, and have never seen anything like this before in my life.

One last this that I definitely have to mention is, of course, the costumes.

There were infinite costume changes throughout the set, and the speed in which these changes occurred was incredible. Displaying an impressive collection of sparkly, colourful and all-around wonderfully whacky collection of costumes, this element really helped to maintain the surreal feeling of the show throughout. The level of detail and the way in which it complimented the mood and tone of the songs performed was clearly the work of an expert talent, and to also create the beautifully bizarre clothing for the dancers is just beyond creatively gifted.

As a whole, and this is coming from someone who was never a Take That fan, Wonderland Live is one of the greatest shows I have ever seen. A visual feast, full of infectious energy that spread throughout the venue. Not only was the vocals and instruments perfect, but the show as a whole was truly visually stunning, and I hope to one day see Take That live again (which are words I honestly never thought I would say).

To find out more about tickets, please visit: http://takethat.com/wonderland-live-2017/

You won’t regret it. 


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