WORTH A LOOK?: ****
WHERE? The 02
WHEN? 20/10, tour runs to 19/12/19
SETLIST: Woman’s World; Strong Enough; Gayatri Mantra; All Or Nothing; All I Ever Need Is You; The Beat Goes On; I Got You Babe; You Haven’t Seen The Last Of Me; Welcome To Burlesque; Lie To Me; Waterloo; SOS; Fernando; After All; Heartbreak Hotel; Walking In Memphis; The Shoop Shoop Song; Bang Bang; I Found Someone; If I Could Turn Back Time; Believe
‘What’s your grandmother doing tonight?’ asks the 73-year-old superstar who appears much younger than her years during this high-energy extravaganza.
- Read on for reasons including how this was Cher’s first UK show for more than 15 years
We only mention the Oscar winner’s age because it is something she herself references during a 100-minute show in which the emphasis is very much on staging a showbiz spectacular.
It relies heavily on TV clips from the singer’s lengthy career and as such serves to be a neat summary of the star’s appeal.
The Here We Go Again tour opened in New Zealand 13 months ago and the setlist is similar to the show she has been putting on in Las Vegas for years with three ABBA songs shoehorned in to bring it up to date with the star’s scene stealing cameo in Mamma Mia 2: Here We Go Again.
The UK clearly holds a place in the singer’s heart as she reminisces: ‘I’m very excited to bring this show to the UK. It was the first country to embrace Sonny & Cher, and it’s where we created and had our first success with Believe. It’s really my second home.’
This is the first of two nights at The 02 but the UK section of this world tour is also arriving at Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, Leeds and Belfast.
When she reminisces about Manchester she confides she found it difficult to understand the accent ‘but the people were lovely’.
She’s also unafraid of criticising US President Donald Trump adding: ‘And I don’t think Boris is much better.’
She tells a story about being told on her 40th birthday that she was too old and not sexy enough for a Hollywood role and it’s clear that she’s very much having the last laugh.
Her trademark voice is as deep and as rich as you might remember from early classics including I Got You Babe which sends chills down our spine as she duets with the departed Sonny.
We’re not Cher’s biggest fans and for us the material veers from enjoyable disco to predictable rock but even we were whooping with excitement as the ship’s cannons from the If I Could Turn Back Time video appeared on the stage screens and key change after key change reminded why it was so anthemic.
It’s a Sunday night but you would never know from the reaction of the audience to a star unafraid to give them almost everything they want.