Take That light up British Summer Time festival in Hyde Park
When a major band plays a one-off date in London the fans’ reaction is uncontrollable. Spotted in the early ours of the day camping outside the British Summer Time festival gates, the “Thatters” occupy the multiple front rows of Take That’s O-shaped stage.
It’s an opera piece – Nessun Dorma (often referred to as Vincerò) from Giacomo Puccini’s Turandot – that opens the former-boyband show; as the guest tenor leaves the stage, Gary Barlow, Mark Owen and Howard Donald emerge singing their number one hit Shine. The song, which was dedicated to Robbie Williams, is a perfect opener: uplifting and singalong-inducing.
Take That’s performance isn’t just a concert, it’s an actual show featuring a fleet of dancers, carnivalesque and circus choreography, fireworks and pyrotechnic flames.
The 2006 resurgence of the Mancunian band, which peaked with the release of the Stuart Price-produced Progress in 2010 and the reunion with Williams, unexpectedly ceased in 2013 when they announced a hiatus. Shortly after that, Robbie Williams and Jason Orange left the band. Their first release as a three-piece, III, is uninspiring and lacking the Take That songwriting edge that repeatedly surprised the music industry since Patience hit the radio.
As expected, the show is also stroll down memory lane: Everything Changes, Could It Be Magic, Never Forget and Relight My Fire are all part of the setlist. It’s the tenth anniversary of the cover of Dan Hartman’s hit and Scottish singer Lulu joins the band to reenact the on-record collaboration.
One of the true highlights of the show is another collaboration, Cry, with the on-stage presence of drum and bass duo Sigma. However, there is a song everyone is waiting for, and, naturally, it turns out to be the true high point of the night: Back for Good.
“All the stars are coming out tonight, they’re lighting up the sky tonight,” sing Take That as fireworks illuminate the sky above Hyde Park.
Filippo L’Astorina, the Editor
For further information about British Summer Time visit here.