Kylie’s Anti-Tour no anticlimax

I’m a little surprised I haven’t heard more about Kylie Minogue’s Anti-Tour show in Sydney. Aside from a couple of delirious Facebook posts from some Sydney friends, I’ve heard around about nothing. That’s probably because I live in Melbourne and the majority of my Facebook friends do as well; which means last Sunday was the big Kylie Day on Facebook. And even though it’s a couple of days ago now, I thought I’d write about the concert anyway.

My partner Kieran is a HUGE Kylie fan, in the way I am about Doctor Who, so when the Anti-Tour was announced, there was no way we weren’t going to go. And being a good husband, I was online on the ticketing site from 11am the day the tickets went on sale and made sure that as soon as it hit midday, I was there, buying tickets – successfully, for the first show, which sold out in seven minutes (or ten, or fifteen, depending on who you believe).

So, on Sunday we got into the city around 1pm, and went to queue for our entry wristbands before heading off to the Melbourne Queer Film Festival. I have never seen the top end of Bourke Street so gay before! Of course, we ran into friends and plenty of other gay men (now there’s a surprise) who were doing the same, and the excitement was palpable.

Nothing, of course, compared to the barely-contained anticipation in the line later that night waiting for the doors to open at 7.30pm, a line that snaked down the laneway next to the Palace, around a corner, down another lane to Little Bourke Street, and then almost up to Spring Street. All devoted, die-hard Kylie lovers, and it was gayer than Mardi Gras.

Position sorted - good view of the stage!

It was even more excitable once we were inside, and soon Kieran and I had our position (just at the top of the stairs down to the dance floor) sorted. We were surrounded by more gay men, all posting photos pictures of themselves on facebook, and then it was 8.30, and – an hour before the advertised time – Kylie was on stage!

Starting with ‘Magnetic Electric’, an extra track from X (2007), Kylie, her band and the crowd were on fire. But it really reached fever pitch when Kylie’s first step back in time took us all to 1988’s ‘Made in heaven’. Looking back at the crowd behind us, there was something heartening to see so many gay men (and lots of straight girls too) in their 30s and 40s singing and dancing gleefully along, reliving more innocent times.

It was like that all night. As Kylie jumped around her extensive back catalogue of b-sides and album tracks – with incredible vocal skill, I must say, and not one mimed song at all – there were obvious highlights; more often than not the quieter songs, such as ‘Tightrope’, ‘Bittersweet Goodbye’ and ‘Paper Dolls’., and a number of Impossible Princess (1997) tracks, ‘Drunk’, ‘Say Hey’ and ‘I Don’t Need Anyone’. But everything she performed was greeted with delight and enthusiasm, and there was only two songs I wasn’t familiar with.

Despite the intimate, stripped-back nature of the show, and Kylie’s unguarded and obvious enjoyment, it had to end – with ‘Enjoy Yourself’ (1989), naturally enough, and a glitter explosion. Well, it wouldn’t be a Kylie concert with out a bit of glitter.

Kylie pumps it in the second show. Photo by Matthew Noonan

And then she turned around and did it again for the second show an hour later. I’d like to see Madonna do a show like this. Just sayin’…

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