Glee Live! In Concert!
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|world tour by Glee Cast|
Promotional poster for tour
|Associated album||Glee: The Music, Volume 1
Glee: The Music, Volume 2
Glee: The Music, The Power of Madonna
Glee: The Music, Volume 3 Showstoppers
Glee: The Music, Journey to Regionals
Glee: The Music, Volume 4
Glee: The Music, Volume 5
Glee: The Music Presents the Warblers
Glee: The Music, Volume 6
|Start date||May 10, 2010|
|End date||July 3, 2011|
|Number of shows||31 in North America
13 in Europe
Glee Live! In Concert! is a concert tour performed in character by members of the cast of the popular television series, Glee. The tour, created by series creator Ryan Murphy was designed due to the overwhelming response to the series. The show reached North America, the United Kingdom and Ireland. Murphy states the series' soundtrack and concerts were an additional revenue stream for the series. The tour received great responses from both music critics and fans of the series. The first North American leg of the tour in 2010 was seen by over 70,000 spectators, generating over five million dollars in ticket sales and ranking ninth on the Billboard Hot Tours list. The 2011 tour was seen by an audience of over 485,000 and placed sixteenth on Billboard's annual Top 25 Tours list, earning over $40 million from 40 shows.
|“||The response of the fans to our little show has been so immediate and so gratifying, we wanted to get out and thank them live and in person,” commented Murphy. “And what show lends itself more to a concert than ‘Glee?’ We can’t wait to take this show on the road and the actors couldn’t be more excited to perform live for audiences in these four cities.||”|
|— Ryan Murphy, Glee Live! press release|
Initially, the cast of the series performed a small promotional tour ("The Gleek Tour") at various Hot Topic stores in the U.S. to showcase the series' soundtrack and to meet with fans of the show. This was followed with a performance of "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Citizens Bank Park for the 2009 World Series. A concert tour was hinted by several cast members via Twitter at the beginning of 2010. The success of the promotional outing lead to the creation of the concert tour. The tour was officially announced via Fox on March 1, 2010 at the conclusion of the first season. Lea Michele (Rachel Berry) expressed her excitement for the tour stating, "This has been such an extraordinary year for 'Glee' and I can’t think of a better way to finish up the first season than performing live on stage with the cast". Her comments were later shared by Cory Monteith (Finn Hudson) stating, "This show has changed my life in so many ways. If you had told me a year ago that I’d be performing classic rock songs in concert theaters around the country, I would never have believed you. We are psyched!". The tour performed over a dozen sell-out shows in the United States.
Special appearances were made by Jane Lynch (Sue Sylvester) and Matthew Morrison (Will Schuester) for a performance at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City, New York. Jonathan Groff (Jesse St. James) performed along with Michele at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Los Angeles, California and at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City, New York.
As the series entered its second season, Fox announced an additional tour leg in Europe. Murphy responds that the show in the U.S. saw an amazing response and the tour extension was to thank the fans overseas for their dedication to the series and promised an additional U.S. tour in the summer of 2011. Amber Riley (Mercedes Jones) shared the cast's enthusiasm for the tour extension remarking, "I loved performing for the fans in Los Angeles, Chicago, Phoenix and New York last year and didn’t think there was any way to top that experience. But performing in the great arenas of London, Manchester and Dublin? How cool is that? We cannot wait." Joining the tour extension are new cast members Chord Overstreet (Sam Evans), Ashley Fink (Lauren Zizes) and Darren Criss (Blaine Anderson).
The concerts began with a pre-recorded greeting from Jane Lynch as cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester, insulting both audience members and the forthcoming performances. Cast members all performed in character, including able-bodied actor Kevin McHale appearing in a wheelchair as disabled glee club member Artie Abrams. As in the show, for the performance of "Jump" the stage was filled with mattresses and the cast wore matching pajamas, while an Escalade was used as a prop for the performance of "Bust Your Windows". Cory Monteith, performing as drum-playing football quarterback Finn Hudson, played the drums as backing for "Sweet Caroline", and several cast members wore Lady Gaga costumes for the performance of "Bad Romance". Dancers appeared as rival glee club Vocal Adrenaline, for a masked dance routine of "Rehab" and "Mercy", with no singing involved. The main setlist concluded with a performance of "Like a Prayer", including backing singers dressed in choir robes, while the encore consisted of "True Colors" and "Somebody to Love".
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After a 20-minute support set from The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers and the handing out of "Sue's Barf Bags", the main show opened with a pre-recorded video from Sue and Mr. Schuester that introduced the New Directions. The cast members were all in character, and again began their setlist with a performance of "Don't Stop Believin'" with the whole cast on stage. Tina and Mercedes then took the lead vocals in a performance of "Dog Days Are Over", and Rachel and Finn took the leads in "Sing", with the full cast remaining on stage for both songs. There were then smaller group/solo performances, including "Fat Bottomed Girls" by Puck which began with the first venture onto the second stage at the back of the arena with Finn accompanying on the drum-kit, and a raunchy performance of "I'm a Slave 4 U" from Brittany, which was preceded by a conversation between the character and Mr. Schuester, with the latter performing via a pre-recorded video. The nature of this pre-set conversation meant that some of the dialogue was lost as it was drowned out by crowd reactions, as Mr. Schuester could not ride the laughs. The whole cast then came back together to perform "Born This Way", including all their original episode T-shirts (a number of which were also made for sale at the merchandising stalls). Rachel then performed "Firework", before a video interlude from Sue introduced the Warblers, who began a three-song set with "Teenage Dream" on the second stage. The setting of the New Directions' choir practice room was then projected onto the stage and the show took on the typical feel of an episode with various characters performing as their accomplishes sat/stood around and watched. Brittany then appeared on-stage to begin a skit with Blaine and later Kurt, which led into a performance of "Jessie's Girl" by Finn. The last number of the main set was a whole-cast performance of original song "Loser Like Me".
After a short interval, Kurt appeared unannounced with Brittany, Tina and a number of other dancers on the second stage and performed a short version of their dance to Beyoncé's "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)" as seen in the first season, although the original vocals were kept. Artie then performed "The Safety Dance" as seen in a dream sequence which saw him removing himself from his wheelchair. The whole cast then returned to the main stage for the last two numbers of the night, "Empire State of Mind" and, as was the case in the 2010 tour, "Somebody to Love".
Ed Masley for USA Today described the opening concert as "equal parts musical theater, giddy pop culture phenomenon and Journey-loving rock show". He felt that Riley was the strongest performer, praising her renditions of "Bust Your Windows" and "Beautiful", and preferred the more "wholesome" songs, opining that: "The raps and overt sexuality on Salt-N-Pepa's "Push It" felt a little forced and out of character, especially sandwiched between "My Life Would Suck Without You" and "Don't Rain on My Parade"." Amanda Kwan of The Associated Press was critical of the tour, deeming the debut concert "an evening that only a fan would appreciate" and "a glorified high school talent show". Kwan felt that the setlist was "disjointed", and noted that the cast slipped confusingly in and out of character throughout the concert. Martin Cizmar of the Phoenix New Times deemed the concert over-sanitized, criticizing the decision to change the "Bad Romance" lyric "I'm a free bitch, baby" to "I'm a freak, baby."
Mikael Wood for the Los Angeles Times enjoyed the first Gibson Amphitheatre concert, writing that it "had the triumphant, sometimes self-satisfied feel of a victory lap." MTV's Aimee Curran also gave the concert a positive review, writing: "The cast was able to make every song their own while still managing to maintain the original artist's integrity." Hahn Nguyen of Zap2it wrote: "seeing it live is well worth the money and effort. Not only is there an elevated, infectious energy you don't get from just watching the show at home, but the feeling of togetherness can't be matched." and "One can truly hear the quality of the live vocals, which in the case of Lea Michele is the real deal. She sounds even better than on the show...Her "Don't Rain on My Parade" live is an amazing and thrilling treat." Variety's Andrew Barker gave a less favorable review, writing: "while its distinctive blend of high camp and recognizable tunes may click on the small screen, when translated to stage the conceit becomes little more than a frantic, under-imagined jukeboxer, and only occasionally a well-performed one. Four-city tour will likely rake in the cash and merit a reprise, but whether it deserves it is a different matter." Though he did, again, note Riley's "solid" performances and calling Lea Michele "the most obvious pro" claiming her songs were performed "with power and presence". "Wisely, the producers never left either woman offstage for long.""
The opening act for the US leg of tour was the Legion of Extraordinary Dancers (LXD), the dance project of cast member Harry Shum, Jr.. He described it as being like "worlds colliding", explaining to the New York Post that in the run-up to the tour, he was rehearsing with the cast, then practicing with LXD until midnight, working closely with the group's choreographer Christopher Scott. He commented: "I think [Glee and LXD] go hand-in-hand in terms of creating art. That's what's so great about them choosing LXD. They could have had an opening band but I think it's going to be a much different show having elements of LXD in it."
|Leg 1 —North America|
|May 15, 2010||Washington D.C.||United States||Verizon Center||N/A||19,539 / 19,539||$595,938|
|May 16, 2010|
|May 18, 2010||Pittsburgh||Petersen Events Center||11,720 / 11,720||$1,649,743|
|May 19, 2010|
|May 20, 2010|
|May 22, 2010||Boston||TD Garden||18,895 / 18,895||$624,453|
|May 23, 2010|
|May 25, 2010||Buffalo||First Niagara Center||18,739 / 18,739||$2,161,304|
|May 26, 2010|
|May 27, 2010|
|Leg 2 — North America|
|May 21, 2011||New York City||United States||Madison Square Garden||The LXD||19,210 / 19,210||$879,880|
|May 23, 2011||Philadelphia||Wells Fargo Center||20,224 / 20,224||$783,520|
|May 25, 2011||Uncasville||Mohegan Sun Arena||9,086 / 9,086||$1,858,140|
|May 26, 2011|
|May 28, 2011||Newark||Prudential Center||18,643 / 18,643||$801,591|
|May 30, 2011||Hershey||Giant Center||N/A||11,420 / 11,420||$1,721,168|
|June 1, 2011||Louisville||KFC Yum! Center||The LXD||21,449 / 21,449||$737,801|
|June 3, 2011||Nashville||Bridgestone Arena||19,209 / 19,209||$988,346|
|June 5, 2011||Atlanta||Philips Arena||20,449 / 20,449||$882,744|
|June 7, 2011||Charlotte||Time Warner Cable Arena||19,204 / 19,204||$2,708,378|
|June 8, 2011|
|June 10, 2011||Sunrise||BankAtlantic Center||20,461 / 20,461||$555,475|
|June 11, 2011||Tampa||St. Pete Times Forum||20,735 / 20,735||$1,075,343|
|June 13, 2011||Austin||Frank Erwin Center||16,649 / 16,649||$1,274,073|
|June 14, 2011||San Antonio||AT&T Center||18,462 / 18,462||$1,182,755|
|June 16, 2011||Toronto||Canada||Air Canada Centre||19,462 / 19,462||$4,452,129|
|June 17, 2011|
|June 19, 2011||Dallas||United States||American Airlines Center||N/A||20,801 / 20,801||$1,052,618|
|June 20, 2011||Houston||Toyota Center||The LXD||18,779 / 18,779||$1,029,611|
|June 22, 2011||Phoenix||US Airways Center||18,694 / 18,694||$2,401,433|
|June 23, 2011|
|June 25, 2011||Los Angeles||Staples Center||20,669 / 20,669||$2,043,832|
|Leg 3 —Europe|
|July 1, 2011||Manchester||England||Manchester Evening News Arena||The LXD||28,895 / 28,895||$2,363,373|
|July 2, 2011|
|July 5, 2011||London||The O2 Arena||103,513 / 103,513||$8,488,444|
|July 6, 2011|
|July 7, 2011|
|July 8, 2011|
|July 9, 2011|
|July 11, 2011||Dublin||Ireland||The O2||33,412 / 33,412||$3,576,663|
|July 12, 2011|
|Total||562,319 / 563,624||$45,888,755|
Cast members perform in character as their Glee counterparts.
Broadcasts and recordings
20th Century Fox released the movie of Glee Live! In Concert!, entitled Glee: The 3D Concert Movie, in theaters on August 12 for a two-week limited engagement; it was directed by Kevin Tancharoen. The film was shot during the concerts on June 16 and 17, 2011, in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The 3D concert film features the entire concert with Behind the Scenes footage, with special guest Gwyneth Paltrow as Holly Holliday. The DVD and Blu-ray of the film, including a 3D Blu-ray, were released around the world in December 2011, and featured exclusive performances which were cut from the film and introductions by Jane Lynch as Sue Sylvester.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Glee Live! In Concert!.|
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