Cher at Target Center, 6/11/14
|Photo by Steve Cohen|
With Cyndi Lauper
Target Center, Minneapolis
Wednesday, June 11, 2014
There's a certain air of speechlessness when you witness a Cher concert. So many songs. So many costumes and characters. There's so much joyful reflection in the stunning life she's led from the audience's point of view. Cher stands in small group of performers whose persona transcends their age and themselves as just an individual.
Cher, who turned 68 only a few weeks ago, brought her life and music in all its compartmentalized glory to a sold-out Target Center last night. The spectacular evening of old and new songs, vintage and modern fashion, and dance all provided an inspiring sendoff for the pop icon. She overwhelmingly promised this was her last performance in the Twin Cities on what she insists is her true Farewell Farewell Tour.
With fair warning a voice from above came over the sound system as everyone found their seats, "Hey! Is anybody out there? Hold on to your socks. I'll be right there?"
As the room went dark, a film montage exploded on stage. Rapid shots of Cher from every video, movie, magazine, TV show, and record cover in her career flickered on large silk curtains. Once they dropped, Cher was revealed standing on top of a 15-foot pillar. Starting off the evening of many costumes in a Cleopatra-style motif, Cher was surrounded by her dancers as she was lowered closer to the stage and toward her erupting fans.
|Photos by Steve Cohen|
The booming bass and house sound of "Woman's World" started the first of new songs Cher performed from her 25th studio album, Closer to the Truth, throughout the night. Immediately indicating this wasn't only going to be a greatest hits show, this was Cher raising a fist for herself. Not only is she an icon, but someone who even late in her career can still deliver the pop perfection.
Despite the high level of well-earned boasting about her career and status as a top-tier diva, Cher didn't take herself too seriously, often poking fun at her age. "I love standing atop that pillar. Always at risk for plunging to my death. It's about your happiness. I do it for you. At 68, I ask you, 'What's your Granny doing tonight?'" she asked to wild applause.
As a full-on show, Cher spared no expense changing characters and personas. Like musical theater, each song followed a theme and provided a glimpse into the different eras and characters Cher is known for. The first of many costume changes through the evening also gave time for her amazing dancers to give transition for each piece.
A pair of cages on chains dangled from the ceiling as her gothed-out dance team swirled about, giving room for a coffin to rise up and Cher to reappear as a vampiress for another newer track, "Dressed to Kill."
Back to the '60s for a warm montage of Sonny and Cher clips, and she returned in big earrings and vintage fashion. For the pair of duets with Sonny, who was onscreen delivering his own verses for "The Beat Goes On" and "I Got You Babe," the audience of beaming smiles rose up again for an anticipated sing-along. It was a precious moment as Cher remarked about Sonny, "He was such a ham. I know he is loving this!"
More transitions through her music had Cher decked out Egyptian-style for "Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves," where she looked like all three wrapped into one. A meditative drum and dancer passage allowed for Cher to change into a Native headdress for "Half Breed" that had the audience again cheering her on. Finally an elongated series of famous lines in her many starring roles ended with her triumphant Oscar speech in '88 for Moonstruck. The stage was set in dressing room mirrors with her dancers in striptease regalia from a more recent film hit, Burlesque, with "Welcome to Burlesque."