The Spice Girls Christmas In Spiceworld Manchester Arena 4th December 1999

The Spice Girls Christmas In Spiceworld Manchester Arena 4th December 1999
spice1999This is very definitely in the “guilty pleasure” category.
Laura was a big Spice Girls fan, and a member of their fan club, so when the “Christmas In Spiceworld Tour” was announced we decided to go to see them in Manchester so that her Christmas would come early that year. The tour was a complete sell out, those Spice Girls were pretty popular at the time; and it included eight massive arena shows in Manchester and London in the run up to Christmas 1999. The tour occurred between the albums Spiceworld and Forever. It was their first tour as a four piece girl group as Geri Halliwell (aka “Ginger Spice”) had left the band the year before to pursue a solo career. The line-up was thus Mel B (Melanie Brown aka “Scary Spice”), Mel C (Melanie Chisholm aka “Sporty Spice”), Emma Bunton (“Baby Spice”) and Victoria Beckham (“Posh Spice”).
We managed to get great seats through the fan club sale, right down front. It was I our first visit to the massive Manchester arena. The stage set was complex and extremely impressive. It consisted of a small platform surrounded by Christmas trees from which ran a very long runway leading to the main stage in the middle of the arena. The band (guitar, drums, bass, brass, and a small string section, I think) were in a pit in the middle of the main stage. The centre of the main stage raised up and rotated and above there were the usual stage lights and a massive Christmassy ice pillar. The girls entered the arena on the small stage and then made their way over to the main stage. During the concert they moved from the main stage to the circular one in its centre, and moved up and down and round and round, all to the delight of the crowd and all very impressive. spiceflyer
The show was in four Acts.
Act 1: “Forever Spice”. They started with “Spice Up Your Life” and the place went crazy. I could hardly hear them for the screaming. Laura loved it, she had taken two of her Spice Girl dolls and was waving them at the girls. The rest of the first act featured the songs “Something Kinda Funny”; “Say You’ll Be There”; “Right Back at Ya”; “Step to Me”; “Mama” (where they were joined by a choir); “Too Much” and “W.O.M.A.N”. The last song of the first Act was “2 Become 1”. Mel B and Emma Bunton came down into the audience and picked two members of the audience (a man and a woman) to join them up on stage.
spicetix99Act 2: Supergirls. The girls played the parts of superheroes on the revolving stage. The songs in this Act were: “Stop”; “Holler”; “Who Do You Think You Are”; “Never Give Up on the Good Times”; “Wannabe” and “Goodbye” (with the choir returning).
Act 3: It’s Christmas! (The Encore). The girls returned to the peal of church bells and performed “Viva Forever” and a Christmas Medley comprising “Merry Xmas Everybody”; “I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday” and a reprise of “Wannabe”.
The crowd, of course, gave them a standing ovation. All great fun and a spectacular show. Quite different from seeing Motorhead. Christmas gigs just don’t come any better 🙂
Spice Up Your Life.
Thanks to Wikipedia for reminding me of the detail of the production.
Fraid, to my shame, I am going to recount yet another guilty pleasure tomorrow. Not content with spending Christmas 1999 with those Spice Girlies, Laura and I just had to go to their reunion show eight years later….

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