There was a party in Indy Thursday night – a Monster Ball to be more precise – and all the freaks were outside. At least, that’s what Lady Gaga said.
The platinum-selling superstar performed all of her hits from both "The Fame" and "The Fame Monster" as well as a few older songs not included on either album. For two hours, Gaga gave her “little monsters” everything they’d hoped for – intricately choreographed dance routines, incredible vocal and musical performances, and an amazing stage show.
It wouldn’t be a complete review of a Lady Gaga performance if the music and costumes were ignored, but it’s important to take a minute to mention her message. When Gaga said “all the freaks are outside,” she did so to try and convey to her fans that they are not freaks, as society so often attempts to paint them.
“Let go of all your insecurities,” she said after singing “Love Game” and before launching into “Boys, Boys, Boys.”
“Reject anyone that said you’re not good enough. You remember you’re a superstar, and you were born that way. Tonight will be your liberation!”
Speaking often about how she wasn’t accepted as a teenager and how she still doesn’t fit into “that whole celebrity thing,” Gaga brought her audience closer to her by identifying with many of them who – judging by their responses – had often felt the same way.
After performing “Money Honey” and before she catapulted into the crazy popular “Telephone,” Gaga took several minutes to talk about the RE*Generation charity she is actively involved with through Virgin Mobile, her tour promoter. RE*Generation works to help the growing number of homeless youth which, according to Gaga, is heavily populated with members of the gay, lesbian, transgendered, and bisexual community. She encouraged her fans to support the charity however they could – through texting donations or even volunteering their time to help organizations supported by RE*Generation.
Judging from the attire of many of her “superfans,” as she liked to refer to the concert-goers, Lady Gaga’s wardrobe is one of the reasons they love her so much. Imitation being the richest form of flattery, there were many in attendance whose outfits were – without a doubt – inspired by “Mother Monster.” With a total of at least 14 costume changes throughout the show, Gaga certainly gave her fans new ideas for the future.
Known for her outrageous outfits, Gaga didn’t disappoint those who were hoping to see some. While performing “The Fame,” she came out in a voluminous red cloak, a la Scarlett O’Hara, as it looked as if curtain rods were the main suspension piece at her shoulders supporting the cloak. Past midpoint of the show, Gaga disappeared inside a round, opaque screen which rather resembled an upside down wedding cake, and came out of it wrapped in a dress comprised of layers and layers of white satin and tulle, complete with a flowing train, a headpiece that looked like a white fan that would open and shut, and silver wings that also opened and closed. In that costume, and in shoes that seemed impossible to walk in, she performed “So Happy I Could Die,” at times more than twenty feet above the stage courtesy of a hydraulic lift.
Perhaps the most outrageous costume of the night was actually three-in-one. At the beginning of “Monster,” in a set comprised of huge, thorn trees and park benches whose backs were overgrown razor blades, Gaga emerged in what could only be described as a gigantic white lamp shade decorated with long white fringe. When she cast that aside, she exposed a jacket made up of very long blonde and brown hair and brightly colored sequins. After her dancers (she had no fewer than ten) “attacked” her and tore the hair jacket from her, she was left in nothing but a black leotard and short black boots. Oh, and she was bloody from where the “monster” had ripped out her heart.
Lady Gaga’s fans adore her. They ate up her performances of “Love Game,” “Telephone,” “Monster,” “Alejandro,” “Poker Face,” and her encore performance of “Bad Romance.” They jumped, they screamed, they danced and screamed some more. And “they” were people of all ages and ethnicities. Couples in their 50s and 60s sat next to others in their late teens or twenties who sat in front of parents with their “tween”-age children. People-watching at Gaga’s show is a great opening act.
And speaking of the opening act, Gaga’s longtime friends Semi-Precious Weapons opened the show with their self-titled track from their new album "You Love You." The four-man band is an interesting blend of punk and rock and their stage performance is even better than the studio-mixed version on the disc. They are high-energy, in-your-face musicians and shouldn’t be missed. Shame on those who came too late to see them.