Singer urges Texans to elect leaders who will work to keep the state safe from gun violence
CONNOR BEHRENS | Contributing Writer
While Mother Monster was fashionably late for those waiting for her at the Globe Life Field on Tuesday night, Aug. 23, all was quickly forgiven as she dazzled audiences with two hours of dance pop hits, piano ballads and a loving plea for kindness.
On a stage bursting with flames and glittering with lights, the 36-year-old superstar got fans in the audience on their feet from the very beginning, commanding the crowd with her classic hits like “Bad Romance,” “Just Dance” and “Poker Face.” Then once she had the attention of the crowd packed into the venue, she turned to her latest studio album, Chromatica.
The ’90s-influenced pop album sounded bold and gigantic in a bustling stadium. With cyberpunk aesthetics flashing on the giant LED screens, the 2020 album — the promo rollout of which was dampened by the COVID-19 pandemic — finally got its moment to shine.
Singles “Rain on Me” and “Stupid Love” lit up the sold-out audience with blue and pink lights, with many people screaming along to the popstar’s latest hits as huge balls of fire burst high up into the stadium’s rafters.
But it wasn’t the pop songs that really brought the audience full of boomers, millennials and Gen Zers together. That happened when the Grammy-winning superstar emerged from the smoke in an insect-like outfit to sing more of her famous hits, including “Shallow,” as she accompanied herself on the piano.
While performing her hit “The Edge of Glory” on the piano, Gaga shared poignant stories about Sonja, her best friend from Texas, who passed away from breast cancer about five years ago. Then the singer professed her love for the Lone Star State. Some were in tears as she discussed the pandemic and thanked the crowd for their kindness and bravery after losing so much since 2020.
Surprising everyone, Gaga then decided to perform “Angel Down,” a track off her 2016 album Joanne. Describing the “purple heart” of Texas, she shared her hope that the state will elect new leaders in November who will fight against gun violence — especially in the wake of the Uvalde school shooting — doing her best to bridge the gap in a time when politics have never been nastier.
Having seen Gaga in concert several times before, I found it to be such a treat to witness her live again. When I last saw her during her ArtRave tour, I had just turned 20 and was in a different stage of my life. Now as I am approaching my 30s, it felt like I saw an old friend again on Tuesday night, someone who is still there for me after all this time.
Vocally, Lady Gaga has never been better, and the pop icon’s discography has become more diverse with ballads and rock-tinged tracks such as “Hold My Hand” added to the pop dance hits.
And for two hours, the pop singer proved that music has the ability to heal.
“I’d rather be dry, but at least I’m alive.”