I am one of those who think that the line-up of performers at the after-race concerts plays a vital role to the marketability of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Last night, the three-day concert kicked off with the priceless performance from Kanye West. Since I have not reached that fanatic level yet, I had to prep up by putting up a playlist of songs from his different albums which I devoured few days before the concert. While he is really good as a performer as publicly known, watching and hearing him up close and personal was another thing. He is much, much better when performing live.
It is good that the race tickets that we got were for the North Grandstand because it is walking distance to Yas concert arena. For the added and best landmark, it is next to the newly opened Ferrari World. In case you are coming from the other race circuits’ stands, it would entail a long walk going to the concert venue. However, there are dedicated coaches going there from the other grandstands.
The concert arena gate opened at 6:30PM. To avoid hassle in scrutiny, do not bring any food and drinks (these are available inside as well as alcoholic beverages but age proof is generally required). In addition, professional cameras and any video recorder are not allowed. Personally, I really prefer to bring a (reliable) compact camera. And I learned to be extra careful about the condition of the battery because mine died at the middle of the concert of The Killers. I can not imagine bringing a DSLR because it is heavy and the weight might affect the whole enjoyment. A friend even sent me an SMS about the probable camera restriction. “That will be the job of the official photographers. That’s their moment. Let’s respect that.” I replied.
Kanye literally opened the concert (with the special effects and the chosen song) by singing Intro. The set list included All of the Lights, Flashing Lights, Diamonds, Touch the Sky, Through the Wire, Can’t Tell Me Nothing, Runaway, Jesus Walks, Love Lockdown, Lost in the World, Gold Digger, American Boy, Pretty Young Thing, Good Life, Heartless, Power, Stronger, and more.
The audience’s craving was enormous and contagious. But seriously, Kanye is really worth the time and resources.
While the numbers were equally outstanding, one of my favorites was the part he was grooving along Gold Digger (Yes, Glee had a version; Will Schuester‘s rapping was also impressive.).
With the seemingly never tired performer, in one of my photos, I caught him refueling by drinking from that bottle of water.
And this got to be my most favorite part. The song itself is remarkable, but after seeing the interpretation of Runaway on stage, this marked much on me. The appearance of this ballerina wowed the audience.
And the hiphop and classic were a perfect match that minute.
While concert’s finale is always given, the best thing is that everyone left extra happy. With adrenaline rush on the side, I must say. As we headed to the exit, Kanye’s moves and music are contagious that you can feel it from the patrons especially with the young ones. Some even proceeded to Skybar for the after party with performances from Sean Paul and Florida among the many.
The next after-race concerts will be of Linkin Park (13th November) and Prince (14th November).