Moment of Truth World Tour

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Moment of Truth World Tour
Tour by Whitney Houston
Whitneytour87.jpg
Official Tour Program
Associated album Whitney
Start date July 4, 1987
End date November 21, 1988
Legs 4
Number of shows 91 in North America
37 in Europe
18 in Asia
6 in Oceania
152 in total
Box office $212(Million) Worldwide
Whitney Houston concert chronology

The Moment of Truth World Tour was the second worldwide tour by American R&B/Pop singer, Whitney Houston, and supported her multi-platinum hit album Whitney. The trek started on July 4, 1987 in North America and continued overseas during 1988 in Europe, Asia and Australia. As reported by Pollstar Magazine's top grossing tours in 1987, Houston had the seventh highest-earning and the highest grossing tour by a female artist that year. The North American leg tour alone grossed over $20.1 million.[1]

Ironically enough, the name of the tour, Moment of Truth, was a track that was to be on the Whitney album and subsequently left off and was replaced with "You're Still My Man". The song "Moment of Truth" was featured on the B-side to the US 7" single for "I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)". It was also released on the CD single for "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)".

History[edit]

Following the release of Whitney, Houston began promoting the album with a world tour. She began on July 4 in Tampa, Florida, where she played to over 70,000 people. In a specious show of religious faith, Houston barred the sale of beer during the concert, alienating most of the thirsty audience members who were expecting an Independence Day celebration to remember and instead left early for Ybor City. [Source: John W. Gardner, personally attended the concert and left early because there were no beer sales.] She returned to the Sunshine State where she ended her North American leg at the Orange County Convention Center on December 8, 1987.

In Europe, Houston visited 12 countries, playing to over half a million fans. Houston played nine consecutive nights at Wembley Arena in London. At the same time, the singer had just broken The Beatles' record of seven consecutive #1 singles in the US. A party was thrown with guests such as Elton John, Fleetwood Mac, and Clive Davis. Houston cancelled an Italian concert date after agreeing to fly back to London to pay tribute to a then-imprisoned Nelson Mandela who was celebrating his birthday. Houston performed a set at Wembley Stadium, playing to over 72,000 fans during the historic event.[2] Following this, Houston resumed her tour in Italy. In 1988, Houston returned from the European leg to perform a benefit concert for the United Negro College Fund on August 28 at Madison Square Garden in New York. It was Houston's only North American date during 1988 after playing 89 dates the previous year. The concert raised over $300,000 for the UNCF. [3]

The tour was one of the top ten highest-grossing tours of the year.[4] The North American leg of the tour alone grossed over $24 million, enough to make her the second highest-earning female entertainer of the year according to Forbes.[5] In addition, the European leg was sold out.[3]

The show[edit]

Like her previous tour, Houston again performed on a round stage in the center of the arena or auditorium so that everyone can see her. The seven-piece band was situated below her. There were two outfit changes; no stage props. However, unlike her previous tour, Houston called upon three backup dancers during the uptempo songs. The dance routines were choreographed by Damita Jo Freeman and Khandi Alexander. Jonathan Butler and Kenny G opened during select dates for the North American leg.

With two albums under her belt, the singer had more material to choose from. She included most of the songs from Whitney, the biggest hits from her debut, as well as the gospel song "He/I Believe". Houston also performed songs from her peers during various concerts, interpreting Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, Luther Vandross, Anita Baker, and Janet Jackson.[6] Like her debut tour, Houston proved herself to be a creative musician. She rearranged most of the songs into soulful jazzy numbers and did a lot of improvisation. The Montreal Gazette said, "Whatever faults the 24-year-old singer has, she is first and foremost a creative musician."[7] The pop hit "How Will I Know" was given a jazzy beginning and gospel-like ending. "You Give Good Love" was slowed down into a steamy and sensual slow jam. Houston often scatted with sax player Jay Davidson on "Just the Lonely Talking Again".[6] Most critics noted "He/I Believe" and "Greatest Love of All" as being the show's highlights.

Despite the praise for her voice and arrangements, many critics noted her lack of dancing and movements. The Richmond Times said "she is about as stiff as a cardboard box."[8] Some noted that she lacked a true personality. Others complained that despite the name of the tour, she followed the same formula as her previous tour.[6] Jon Pareles of the New York Times reviewed her Madison Square Garden concert and said, "Ms. Houston may be a new kind of pop singer for the video era: an encyclopedic, restless virtuoso. She has absorbed the soul and pop styles of everyone from Aretha Franklin to Barbra Streisand to Diana Ross to Al Green; she can deliver a gospel rasp, a velvety coo, a floating soprano and a cheerleader's whoop."[9]

Opening acts[edit]

Set list[edit]

Notes[edit]

  • July, August 1987: a medley of Anita Baker's "Sweet Love", Janet Jackson's "Control", and Luther Vandross' "Stop to Love" was performed, also included was Chaka Khan's "Sweet Thing" (only on select dates). Like her previous tour, and all future tours, Houston included gospel songs into her set.
  • September 2, 1987: the concert in Saratoga Springs, New York was aired with her performances for "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" and "Didn't We Almost Have It All" during the televised ceremony for the MTV Video Music Awards on September 11, 1987.
  • June 11, 1988: Houston performed a set of her hit songs at Wembley Stadium for an All star music concert titled "FreedomFest, Mandela Day" to celebrate Nelson Mandela's 70th Birthday.
  • August 28, 1988: Houston performed a USA Benefit concert for The United Negro College Fund at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Whitney performed "Family" and "When I First Saw You" with her brother Gary Houston and mother Cissy Houston as tribute to the Broadway musical, Dreamgirls.

Band[edit]

  • Musical Director/Piano: John Simmons
  • Bass guitar/bass synthesizer: Rickey Minor
  • Keyboards: Willard Meeks
  • Saxophone: Jay Davidson
  • Guitar: Steve Kelly
  • Drums: Gregory Grainger
  • Percussion: Kevin Jones
  • Background vocalists: Gary Houston, Felicia Moss, Voneva Simms, Billy Baker
  • Dancers: Frantz Hall, Leesa Humphrey, Raymond Delbarrio
  • Choreographer: Damita Jo Freeman
  • Assistant choreographer: Khandi Alexander

Tour dates[edit]

List of concerts, showing date, city, country, venue, tickets sold, amount of available tickets and gross revenue
Date City Country Venue Attendance Revenue
North America[10]
July 4, 1987 Tampa United States Tampa Stadium 49,659 / 55,000 $883,551
July 5, 1987 Milwaukee Marcus Amphitheater N/A N/A
July 7, 1987 Canandaigua Finger Lakes Performing Arts Center 12,500 / 12,500 $186,280
July 8, 1987 Lake Placid Olympic Center Complex Arena 8,000 / 8,000 $131,291
July 9, 1987 Providence Providence Civic Center 13,342 / 13,342 $240,546
July 11, 1987 Columbia Merriweather Post Pavilion N/A N/A
July 12, 1987
July 14, 1987 Cuyahoga Falls Blossom Music Center 18,723 / 18,723 $254,101
July 17, 1987 Indianapolis Market Square Arena 14,000 / 14,000 $231,682
July 18, 1987 Saint Paul Harriet Island Pavilion N/A N/A
July 19, 1987
July 21, 1987 Hoffman Estates Poplar Creek Music Theater N/A N/A
July 22, 1987
July 24, 1987 Peoria Peoria Civic Center 11,206 / 11,206 $196,105
July 25, 1987 St. Louis St. Louis Arena 10,491 / 19,398 $194,084
July 26, 1987 Cincinnati Riverbend Music Center N/A N/A
July 27, 1987
July 30, 1987 Pittsburgh Civic Arena 16,908 / 16,908 $317,153
July 31, 1987 Clarkston Pine Knob Music Theatre 28,287 / 28,287 $481,680
August 1, 1987
August 2, 1987 Pittsburgh Civic Arena N/A N/A
August 5, 1987 Charlotte Charlotte Coliseum 11,737 / 11,737 $198,783
August 7, 1987 Birmingham Birmingham–Jefferson Civic Center 16,000 / 16,000 $255,658
August 8, 1987 Atlanta Omni Coliseum 16,062 / 16,062 $305,185
August 9, 1987 Greensboro Greensboro Coliseum 12,624 / 15,781 $219,981
August 12, 1987 Richmond Richmond Coliseum 10,386 / 10,386 $175,945
August 13, 1987 Hershey Hersheypark Stadium 22,000 / 22,000 $377,055
August 14, 1987 Philadelphia The Spectrum 18,800 / 18,800 $348,674
August 16, 1987 Wantagh Jones Beach Marine Theater 20,480 / 20,480 $409,600
August 17, 1987
August 19, 1987 Holmdel Township Garden State Arts Center 21,356 / 21,356 $366,276
August 20, 1987
August 21, 1987 Hartford Hartford Civic Center 30,613 / 30,613 $561,088
August 22, 1987
August 24, 1987 Boston Boston Common 36,000 / 36,000 $732,478
August 25, 1987
August 26, 1987
August 28, 1987 Montreal Canada Montreal Forum 16,348 / 16,348 $287,395
August 29, 1987 Ottawa Lansdowne Park N/A N/A
August 30, 1987 Toronto CNE Stadium 24,568 / 24,568 $436,315
September 2, 1987 Saratoga Springs United States Saratoga Performing Arts Center N/A N/A
September 3, 1987 Syracuse Onondaga War Memorial 15,000 / 15,000 $217,146
September 5, 1987 Providence Providence Civic Center 13,415 / 13,415 $240,934
September 8, 1987 New York City Madison Square Garden 58,800 / 58,800 $862,000
September 9, 1987
September 12, 1987 Lexington Rupp Arena 16,625 / 16,625 $290,938
September 13, 1987 Champaign Assembly Hall N/A N/A
September 18, 1987 Austin Frank Erwin Center 16,966 / 16,966 $281,731
September 19, 1987 Houston The Summit 17,000 / 17,000 $294,591
September 20, 1987 Dallas Reunion Arena 15,984 / 15,984 $292,863
September 23, 1987 Albuquerque Tingley Coliseum 10,626 / 10,626 $189,583
September 26, 1987 Irvine Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre 14,555 / 14,555 $281,453
September 27, 1987 Mountain View Shoreline Amphitheatre 16,113 / 16,113 $280,089
September 29, 1987 Las Vegas Thomas & Mack Center 11,787 / 14,000 $224,071
October 1, 1987 Oakland Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena 14,803 / 14,803 $273,856
October 2, 1987 Inglewood The Forum 15,600 / 15,600 $289,192
October 9, 1987 Seattle Seattle Center Coliseum 29,417 / 29,417 $535,249
October 10, 1987
October 11, 1987 Vancouver Canada Pacific Coliseum 16,500 / 16,500 $279,720
October 12, 1987 Portland United States Memorial Coliseum Complex 12,725 / 12,725 $231,270
October 27, 1987 Denver McNichols Sports Arena 13,673 / 16,000 $262,277
October 29, 1987 Kansas City Kemper Arena 12,799 / 13,105 $206,316
October 30, 1987 Ames Hilton Coliseum 12,500 / 12,500 $212,853
October 31, 1987 Iowa City Carver–Hawkeye Arena 14,000 / 14,000 $243,828
November 3, 1987 Omaha Omaha Civic Auditorium 10,859 / 10,859 $197,118
November 4, 1987 Oklahoma City Myriad Convention Center Arena 9,530 / 9,530 $160,738
November 9, 1987 Worcester Centrum in Worcester 12,430 / 12,430 $264,319
November 10, 1987 East Rutherford Meadowlands Arena 17,257 / 17,257 $335,818
November 14, 1987 Morgantown WVU Coliseum 14,060 / 14,060 $224,174
November 20, 1987 Knoxville Stokely Athletic Center 13,478 / 13,478 $207,553
November 21, 1987 Chapel Hill Smith Center 9,633 / 20,991 $168,578
November 27, 1987 New Orleans Louisiana Superdome N/A N/A
December 2, 1987 Jacksonville Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Coliseum
December 4, 1987 Tampa USF Sun Dome 6,492 / 8,400 $103,950
December 5, 1987 Pembroke Pines Hollywood Sportatorium N/A N/A
December 8, 1987 Orlando Orange County Civic Center
Europe
April 17, 1988 Brussels Belgium Forest National N/A N/A
April 19, 1988 Rotterdam Netherlands Ahoy Rotterdam
April 21, 1988
April 23, 1988
April 24, 1988
April 27, 1988 Birmingham United Kingdom NEC Arena
April 28, 1988
April 30, 1988
May 1, 1988
May 2, 1988
May 4, 1988 London Wembley Arena
May 5, 1988
May 7, 1988
May 10, 1988
May 11, 1988
May 12, 1988
May 15, 1988
May 16, 1988
May 18, 1988 Paris France Palais omnisports de Paris-Bercy
May 20, 1988 Frankfurt Germany Festhalle Frankfurt
May 21, 1988
May 24, 1988 Copenhagen Denmark Valby-Hallen
May 25, 1988 Drammen Norway Drammenshallen
May 27, 1988 Stockholm Sweden Johanneshovs Isstadion
May 28, 1988
May 29, 1988 Gothenburg Scandinavium
June 2, 1988 Berlin Germany Waldbühne
June 4, 1988 Dortmund Westfalenhallen
June 6, 1988 Wrocław Poland Hala Stulecia
June 8, 1988 Rome Italy Palazzo dello Sport
June 9, 1988
June 12, 1988 Milan Palatrussardi
June 13, 1988
June 16, 1988 Vienna Austria Wiener Stadthalle
June 18, 1988 Basel Switzerland St. Jakobshalle
June 19, 1988
June 21, 1988
June 23, 1988 Munich Germany Olympiahalle
June 24, 1988
June 26, 1988
June 28, 1988 Barcelona Spain Plaça de Toros La Monumental
June 29, 1988 Madrid Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas
North America[11]
August 28, 1988 New York City United States Madison Square Garden 17,702 / 17,702 $482,681
Asia
September 21, 1988 Hiroshima Japan Hiroshima Green Arena N/A N/A
September 22, 1988 Fukuoka Fukuoka Kokusai Center
September 26, 1988 Tokyo Nippon Budokan
September 27, 1988
September 28, 1988
October 1, 1988 Osaka Osaka-jō Hall
October 2, 1988
October 5, 1988 Nagoya Nagoya Rainbow Hall
October 6, 1988
October 7, 1988 Shizuoka Kusanagi Athletic Stadium
October 11, 1988 Sapporo Makomanai Indoor Stadium
October 13, 1988 Sendai Sendai Gymnasium
October 15, 1988 Yokohama Yokohama Cultural Gymnasium
October 16, 1988 Tokyo Nippon Budokan
October 17, 1988
Oceania
October 22, 1988 Melbourne Australia National Tennis Centre N/A N/A
October 25, 1988 Canberra National Indoor Sports Centre
October 31, 1988 Perth Perth Entertainment Centre
November 7, 1988 Sydney Sydney Entertainment Centre
November 8, 1988
November 11, 1988 Brisbane Brisbane Entertainment Centre
Asia
November 18, 1988 Hung Hom Hong Kong Hong Kong Coliseum N/A N/A
November 19, 1988
November 20, 1988
Total 900,419 / 935,936 $15,925,795

Broadcast / Recordings[edit]

  • One of the Wembley Arena shows in London was recorded and broadcast live on Rai Uno TV in Italy. There were no recordings released to the public.

References[edit]

  1. ^ U2's $35-Million Gross is Highest for 1987 Tours. Los Angeles Times. By Robert Hilborn-January 23, 1988
  2. ^ allwhitney.com
  3. ^ a b "Choices". Newsday. August 26, 1988, Page 02
  4. ^ MacDonald, Patrick. "U2, Bon Jovi were top concert acts of 1987". Seattle Times. January 15, 1988. Page 5. Retrieved May 16, 2008
  5. ^ "Bill Cosby Leads the Millionaire Entertainers". San Francisco Chronicle. September 7, 1987
  6. ^ a b c Bream, Jon. "Houston is sensational – if you like glitz and glamour". The Minneapolis Star and Tribune. July 19, 1987
  7. ^ Griffin, John. "Whitney Delivers but Stage Presence Slips". Montreal Gazette. August 29, 1987
  8. ^ Young, Monte R. "Houston Leaves Fans In Awe Of Her Voice". Richmond Times. August 13, 1987
  9. ^ Pop: Whitney Houston Live. Review by Jon Pareles, September 10, 1987, New York Times
  10. ^ North American tour dates and boxscore data:
  11. ^ "Boxscore: Top Concert Grosses" (PDF). Billboard. Vol. 100 no. 39 (Nielsen Business Media, Inc.). September 24, 1988. p. 24. ISSN 0006-2510. 

External links[edit]