The Ultimate Tour (Take That)

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The Ultimate Tour
Tour by Take That
Associated albumNever Forget – The Ultimate Collection
Start dateApril 23, 2006
End dateJune 28, 2006
No. of shows32
Box officeUS $29.4 million ($36.54 in 2018 dollars)[1]
Take That concert chronology

The Ultimate Tour (also known as the Greatest Hits Tour) was a reunion tour in 2006 by British pop group, Take That. The tour, featuring four of the original members of the group Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Jason Orange and Mark Owen; ran for a total of 32 shows in Britain and Ireland. Sugababes were the supporting act for that year. Each member of the band received £1,500,000 from the tour after tax.


The Ultimate Tour was the first time that Take That had performed together since they split in 1996. The show featured all the original members of the group, except Robbie Williams who quit the group in 1995. At a press conference in London on November 25, 2005 the group front man Gary Barlow announced: "Thanks for giving us the last 10 years off but unfortunately the rumours are true. Take That are going back on tour."[2] The news came after renewed interest in the group after a televised documentary proved to be a ratings success and their album Never Forget – The Ultimate Collection peaked at #2 in the UK Albums Chart. The tour was originally scheduled to be an 11 date arena tour but after they sold out within 30 minutes of going on sale,[3] more dates were immediately added as promoters doubled the number of shows. The group sold 275,000 tickets in the space of under 3 hours,[3] ironically making it the second fastest tour of 2005 behind former member Robbie Williams' solo tour.[2] Such was the level of interest in the tour, promoters were forced to add further dates to the tour, this time in Stadium venues. Dates at the new Wembley Stadium, Etihad Stadium in Manchester and the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff were all announced. When Wembley Stadium sold out in just 30 minutes,[4] further more dates at Wembley and Manchester were announced. In March 2006, the dates at Wembley Stadium were rescheduled to the National Bowl in Milton Keynes due to the delay in the construction of Wembley Stadium.[5]

Supporting acts[edit]

The main support act for The Ultimate Tour was British soul singer, Beverley Knight. Knight was originally scheduled to perform only on the arena dates of the tour, but proved so popular with audiences that she was invited to play the stadium shows as well. As well as playing her own set, Knight provided backing vocals for Take That during "Once You've Tasted Love" and gave a spoken introduction to "Relight My Fire", as well as singing Lulu's vocals from the same song at the arena shows. At the stadium dates, Lulu performed her own vocals for "Relight My Fire" and Knight only performed the introduction. Knight also appeared during the finale song, "Never Forget". The other support act for the five British stadium dates at the end of the tour was British girl group Sugababes, and the singer Lulu made a guest appearance during Take That's show to sing her part on "Relight My Fire". The Pussycat Dolls supported the band upon their return to Ireland and the very last date of the tour.


  1. "Band Manufactured Opening - O Verona"
  2. "Once You've Tasted Love" (Featuring Beverley Knight)
  3. "Pray"
  4. "Today I've Lost You"
  5. "Why Can't I Wake Up With You?"
  6. "It Only Takes a Minute"
  7. "Babe"
  8. "Everything Changes"
  9. "A Million Love Songs"
  10. "The Beatles" Medley: "I Want to Hold Your Hand" / "A Hard Day's Night" / "She Loves You" / "I Feel Fine" / "Get Back" / "Hey Jude"
  11. "How Deep is Your Love?"
  12. "Love Ain't Here Anymore"
  13. "Apache 2006"
  14. "Sure"
  15. "Relight My Fire" (Featuring Beverley Knight & Lulu)
  16. "Let It Rain"
  17. "Back For Good"
  18. "Could It Be Magic"
  19. "Never Forget"

Take That members played instruments on stage: Gary - piano ("It Only Takes A Minute", "Babe", "A Million Love Songs") and tambourine ("Everything Changes"); Howard - piano ("Everything Changes"); Jason - guitar ("Babe", "Everything Changes"); Mark - guitar ("Everything Changes").

"It Only Takes A Minute" was performed as tango (combined with "Roxanne′s Tango" from Moulin Rouge) with all four band members dancing one by one with a female dancer, Gary partly on the top of the piano. They said in an interview it was Howard's idea to make the song as tango.

"Apache 2006" was a mostly comical number showing manufacturing of a boy band, including 10 rules that each boy band member must comply with. In the second part Take That members performed a robotic dance, in the course of it Gary's reputed reluctance to dancing was highlighted. In the third part Jason rapped part of "These Are The Days Of Our Lives" lyrics from Queen with remaining members singing back. The final part represented the ten "dark years" after the band split up in 1996, individual members weren't very successful as solo musicians and they weren't on speaking terms with Robbie Williams.

"Could It Be Magic" was opened by a video of Robbie Williams singing the song. Then Gary sung his solo part in that song, as well as in "Everything Changes".

Tour dates[edit]

Date City Country Venue
23 April 2006 Newcastle England Metro Radio Arena
24 April 2006
26 April 2006 Birmingham National Exhibition Centre
27 April 2006
28 April 2006
30 April 2006 Glasgow Scotland Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre
1 May 2006
2 May 2006 Sheffield England Hallam FM Arena
4 May 2006 Manchester Manchester Evening News Arena
5 May 2006
6 May 2006
8 May 2006 London Wembley Arena
9 May 2006
10 May 2006
12 May 2006 Dublin Ireland Point Theatre
13 May 2006
14 May 2006 Belfast Northern Ireland Odyssey Arena
16 May 2006 Birmingham England National Exhibition Centre
17 May 2006
18 May 2006 Sheffield Hallam FM Arena
20 May 2006 Manchester Manchester Evening News Arena
21 May 2006
22 May 2006
24 May 2006 London Wembley Arena
25 May 2006
26 May 2006
17 June 2006 Manchester Etihad Stadium
18 June 2006
21 June 2006 Cardiff Wales Millennium Stadium
24 June 2006 Milton Keynes England National Bowl
25 June 2006
28 June 2006 Dublin Ireland RDS Arena

Box office score data[edit]

Venue City Tickets Sold / Available Gross Revenue
Metro Radio Arena Newcastle 19,087 / 19,087 (100%) $1,215,514
National Exhibition Centre Birmingham 57,007 / 57,007 (100%) $3,640,386
Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre Glasgow 17,385 / 17,385 (100%) $1,125,259
Hallam FM Arena Sheffield 22,933 / 22,933 (100%) $735,654
Evening News Arena Manchester 85,823 / 85,823 (100%) $5,421,153
Wembley Arena London 66,276 / 66,276 (100%) $4,186,671
Etihad Stadium Manchester 112,292 / 112,292 (100%) $7,493,888
Millennium Stadium Cardiff 55,675 / 55,675 (100%) $3,710,832
RDS Arena Dublin 27,526 / 30,000 (92%) $1,919,916
TOTAL 464,004 / 466,478 (99%) $29,449,273


DVD release[edit]

The concerts on 17 and 18 June at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester were recorded for a subsequent DVD HD DVD and Blu-ray releases, special limited-edition package also contains a live CD with five songs from the show. An edited version of the show was broadcast on British channel ITV2 during Christmas time that year.

Critical response[edit]

The tour garnered generally favourable reviews.[6][7] In his review of the Manchester leg, Chris Long of the BBC wrote that the tour was the "biggest thing to hit Manchester in recent years" and called it "a flawless performance".[8]


  1. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved January 2, 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Entertainment | Take That confirm a reunion tour". BBC News. 2005-11-25. Retrieved 2014-06-05.
  3. ^ a b "Entertainment | Wembley Stadium beckons Take That". BBC News. 2005-12-12. Retrieved 2014-06-05.
  4. ^ "Entertainment | Take That Wembley gig sells out". BBC News. 2005-12-16. Retrieved 2014-06-05.
  5. ^ "Entertainment | Stadium delay hits Wembley gigs". BBC News. 2006-03-31. Retrieved 2014-06-05.
  6. ^ Crawley, Peter (6 May 2006). "Back for good - with a hologram of Robbie". The Irish Times.
  7. ^ Wysome, Hannah (19 June 2006). "Take That at City of Manchester Stadium". BBC.
  8. ^ Long, Chris (20 October 2006). "Take That – The Ultimate Tour (Polydor)". BBC.