Reviewed by Tiffany Markman: copywriter & editor, co-owner of Sing at my Party and adoring mom and wife, who tries to balance her workaholism with her addiction to false eyelashes, caffeine, red wine, blogging about books, and Twitter.
With the recent exit of Zayn Malik, it was up to me, my tolerant and generously-bribed husband and 94 998 other Joburgers – host to 1D’s first official foursome concert at FNB Stadium – to show Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson and Niall Horan that broken hearts should go to South Africa.
And we did! South Africans know how to host a party, crisis or no crisis.
The concert kicked off with an opening performance by SA’s Got Talent star Jonny Apple, whose on-stage persona needs work to live up to his strong vocals. (He could learn a thing or two from his special guests, FOUR). And when Harry, Liam, Louis and Niall bounded on-stage at 8.30pm, the darkened arena erupted.
Of a smooth 23-song setlist, highlights were ‘Steal My Girl’, ‘Midnight Memories’, ‘One Thing’, ‘What Makes You Beautiful’, ‘Through The Dark’ and ‘Story of My Life’, plus gorgeous stage design.
The boys were typically high-energy. Harry swaggered and flipped his locks. Niall strummed. Louis smirked prettily. Liam spun his microphone. And they were very grateful.
The band in concert mode is usually wide-eyed and appreciative of their fans; the heaving masses; the signs. It’s their thing, and it’s sweet. But, in what must have been a very difficult night for the foursome, they fed off the love, with thanks and compliments to Joburg.
“Thank you for choosing to spend your evening with us,” Harry said, “You have no idea how much we love you right now.” And: “South Africa, you are my favourite audience,” said Liam, “This is literally my favourite gig so far.”
In all, 94 999 of us had a blast. And my husband said it was ‘painless’.
The new 1D put on a full-scale production, the fans loved it and the ratio of selfie sticks to bare midriffs came in at a comfortable 1:3. In South Africa at least, it seems that 1D is through the dark, for now. But then, South Africans are irrepressible. Much like 1D.