THE TWAIN PULLS OUT
FIRST STOP STEELTOWN...AND NOW IT'S THE WORLD FOR SHANIA
Hamilton, ON - Copps Coliseum
September 25, 2003
Courtesy of the Toronto Sun
HAMILTON -- The Ontario election appears to have rubbed off on Shania Twain.
What else could explain
the incredible amount of glad-handing the country crossover music queen performed over two hours last night at the launch
of her world tour at Copps Coliseum. Playing in front of a record-setting, Copps Coliseum crowd of 18,000, Twain and her nine-piece
band -- who've been in production rehearsals in Steeltown for the past two weeks -- performed a fan-friendly extravaganza.
And then some.
She dragged audience members dressed in leopard-print cowboy hats and purple feathered boas on stage
with her. She shook the hands of small children whose parents lifted them up to greet her. She signed autograph after autograph.
She repeatedly high-fived fans, many bearing flowers and toys. She even got a member of her staff to take a picture of her
with a female audience member.
It all verged on a mall appearance at times. Albeit one with the best lights, sound
and pyro that money can buy. No matter.
The fans ate up every single Shania second of it.
Twain opened the
evening with her hit, Man! I Feel Like A Woman!, and first appeared marching through the crowd enroute to her oval, in-the
She would visit with the audience -- bearing placards with messages like "Shania U Rock" and "Hey, Shania,
We Want To Be Up Up Up There With You" -- again and again and again. Like when she appeared high up in some seats amongst
the crowd to sing The Woman In Me accompanied by her acoustic guitarist.
Let's put it this way: Twain's performance
put most politicians to shame.
With an open stage that had an incredible-looking lighting rig and speakers mounted
above it, all eyes were on the singer who wore some mighty strange, sparkly outfits but still managed to look good. It's a
testament to her beauty -- and possibly the amount of bling-bling around her neck -- that she almost pulled off such flashy,
Twain's first odd costume, consisting of gold satin pants and a furry lavender halter with a turquoise
bra underneath -- it matched her turquoise suede runners adorned with lavender ties -- was just a hint of what was to come.
Someone get this woman a stylist!
Still, from the get-go, the audience was on Twain's side and she could do no wrong
as they jumped to their feet and remained there for much of the night.
Her energy level in itself was impressive as
only a handful of ballads were trotted out -- Forever And Always, From The Moment On, Still The One -- with the emphasis on
keeping things lively.
The only time the show dragged was when Twain left the stage for a costume change and the band
had to pick up the slack.
Nearly half of the set list was from her latest album, Up!, although she did throw in plenty
of older hits from her juggernaut release, 1997's Come On Over, along with 1995's The Woman In Me, much to the crowd's delight.
And every now and then fireworks were set off to accentuate the beginning or ending of a song.
moment saw Twain invite a group of local drummers to march up on to the stage and play alongside her and the band for (If
You're Not In It For Love) I'm Outta Here! But really, in the end, it was all about Shania, and the time that the audience
got to spend with her.
Twain plays two sold-out shows at the Air Canada Centre on Oct. 2-3.
CITY UP! FOR SHANIA
SELL-OUT CROWD DELIGHTS IN SUPERSTAR'S NEAR-PERFECT PERFORMANCE
Ottawa, ON - Corel Centre
September 27, 2003
Courtesy of the Ottawa Sun
Shania Twain reminds me of that popular girl back in high school everyone wanted to hate but couldn't because
she was impossibly beautiful and nice.
My nasty side wants to find some sort of flaw, some bit of fakery or flash
of irritation, to signal Twain isn't as perfect as she appears. But after her long-awaited stop at Ottawa's Corel Centre last
night, which seemed to provide everything her fans wanted and more, that mean part of me is still looking.
fans braved driving rain to see their favourite country/pop superstar perform a sellout, two-hour show. They sang along, flashed
dozens of signs like, "Shania We Want to Sing With U," snapped hundreds of photos and showered the singer throughout with
gifts of flowers and stuffed animals.
An elaborate in-the-round stage, Twain's slick nine-piece band, awe-inspiring
lighting and major pyrotechnics sprinkled throughout the show created the kind of spectacle country fans have come to expect
from their idols.
Twain entered at floor level and danced through the audience
toward the stage in a turquoise bra, a furry purple bra top, satin cargo pants and bright blue sneakers. The entire show was
as relentlessly upbeat as Twain and husband Mutt Lange's tendency to pepper her albums with exclamation marks. She opened
with Man! I Feel Like a Woman! from her 1997, 34-million-copy-selling second CD Come On Over, moved quickly to Up! from her
latest CD of the same name and wrapped up in a fury of fiddles, Canada Day-style fireworks and oodles of fluttering confetti,
twirling and singing Rock This Country!
Twain provided her fans with a solid, generous mix of old and new songs, lesser-knowns
and bona fide hits, even cramming When, You Win My Love, Come On Over and I'm Holdin' On to Love (to Save My Life) into a
She perched on a rotating dais at centre stage for a handful of ballads, including her recent hit For Ever
and For Always, When You Kiss Me and the schmaltzy-but-beautiful From This Moment On.
In keeping with her generous
reputation, Twain spent the show pulling one gobsmacked fan after another up on stage and into the spotlight. Teen Roxanne's
soundless, "Oh My God!" pretty much summed up her take on the experience of singing She's Not Just a Pretty Face with Twain.
Twain's all for female empowerment, and she also collects donations at each show for local charities like Ottawa's
Breakfast for Learning program so, geesh, you can't fault her there.
Remember Twain giving a 14-year-old Avril Lavigne
a break when she last blew through town in 1999? This time around she gave 10 local drummers a major boost -- including two
kilt-wearing members of Kemptville's Royal Canadian Legion Branch 212 -- by bringing them up on stage to help out in sections
of (If You're Not in it For Love) I'm Outta Here.
She even brought a weird Elvis impersonator-guy from Chicago up
on stage, after admiring the sizeable bouquet of flowers he handed her. He promptly stated his clear intention to follow her
on each stop of her tour.
HYPE AND HOOPLA
"I've been waiting for three years!" he cried.
multi-tasking Twain signed dozens of autographs on everything from a middle-aged man's jean jacket to a little girl's "Shania
Rocks!" tank-top with one hand while singing tunes into the microphone gripped in the other, though songs like C'est La Vie
did suffer from her divided attention.
There were definitely moments when the hype and hoopla seemed to drown out
Twain's singing, but all in all, the entire evening came off as she does, darn it all: Pretty much flawless.
CANUCK DIVA EASILY WINS HEARTS OF ECSTATIC FANS AT ACC
Toronto, ON - Air Canada Centre
October 2, 2003
Courtesy of the Toronto Sun
TORONTO -- Election? What provincial election?
It was Twain Time last night at the Air Canada Centre
as country music's crossover queen Shania Twain kicked off a sold-out, two-night stand at the hockey arena in front of just
over 18,000 fans.
In fact, the Timmins, Ont., native actually launched her latest world tour -- her first in three
and a half years -- just one week ago at Copps Coliseum in Hamilton.
But, thankfully, Twain took a more restrained
approached last night, at least initially, in her interaction with the audience and stage outfits, both out of control at
the tour opener.
First appearing in diamond-encrusted jeans, boots and a cut-up sleeveless white T-shirt with "I'm
Canadian 1st" and a large red maple leaf on the front, Twain looked simply stunning as she wandered through the crowd on the
floor enroute to her in-the-round stage.
As with the tour launch, Twain opened her two-hour, 15-minute show with Man!
I Feel Like A Woman!, backed by her nine-piece band -- but waited until the fourth song in, C'est La Vie, before really starting
to sign autographs.
After that there was no turning back as fans, some bearing flowers, toys, T-shirts, and large
signs, flocked to the front of the stage with their arms outstretched toward her.
The impressive use of fireworks,
firebursts, streamers and confetti aside, some of the better songs proved to be slower ones -- Forever And Always, which featured
Twain sitting down on a stool on a small, circular rotating stage, the acoustic-guitar dominated When You Kiss Me and From
This Moment On, and the encore number You're Still The One.
And when Twain and one of her guitar players appeared
seated in the audience to sing The Woman In Me (Needs The Man In You), fans were beside themselves.
Also good were
the moments of genuine spontaneity like when Twain dragged a young girl named Debra up to sing the words to the female empowerment
song, She's Just Not A Pretty Face. Fan and singer stood side by side, arms swinging, hand in hand, smiling at each other
-- and it seemed pretty real.
That poignant moment was balanced by a much funny one later when Twain brought up a
female Shania impersonator because she was so impressed with her revealing outfit copied from the I'm Gonna Getcha Good! video.
"Did I really wear that?" said Twain, checking it out. "She's not really nude under there. It sure looks pretty nude."
As for the band, who have been playing with Twain for the past six years, they're a tight unit to be sure.
good were the three fiddle players who shined on Don't Be Stupid (You Know I Love You) and Any Man Of Mine, and the pedal
steel guitarist who brought some much-needed twang to the pop-and-rock infused proceedings during Whose Bed Have Your Boots
Worth mentioning as well was the back-to-back acoustic guitar playing by Twain and one of her musicians
on No One Needs To Know, which she told the crowd she wrote at Deerhurst Resort, and the invitation to 12 local drummers to
join her and the band on stage for (If You're Not In It For Love) I'm Outta Here!
Meanwhile, only minor changes were
made to the set list since the Hamilton launch, with just a handful of songs changing order. Almost half of the material still
came from Twain's latest album, Up!
SHANIA PUTS ON A CROWD PLEASING SHOW AT 'DOME
Calgary, AB - Pengrowth Saddledome
December 4, 2004
Courtesy of the Calgary Sun
CALGARY -- Compared to previous visits, Shania's sold-out show last night at the Pengrowth Saddledome didn't
impress as much.
Twain struggled vocally and the dynamite energy we've seen at previous concerts, and recently on
numerous award shows, was definitely lacking.
Even when she high-fived audience members close to the stage, it lacked
She made good use of the circular stage (similar to the one the Dixie Chicks played on recently), but Twain's
step definitely lacked bounce.
Despite those weaknesses, her show didn't derail. Even a drained Shania can put on
a better than average show.
This Canadian superstar knows what fans want -- and she delivers.
appeared by rising out of the centre of the stage wearing a Flames jersey and singing Man! I Feel Like A Woman.
pyrotechnics blasted even before the Timmons, Ont. native got to the first chorus.
Other fan-friendly tricks included
signing autographs while she sang Don't Be Stupid. And, after, performing a medley of her hits, she brought two lucky fans
onto the stage who had purchased a $2 ticket that raised money for the Breakfast for Learning charity.
While she had
them centre stage, Twain signed their t-shirts and posed for a photograph with them.
Later, during the song Woman
In Me, she and a guitarist appeared in the audience to sing the ballad.
Also elevating the show was her impressive
eight-piece band. The members have been with Twain since her last tour here, and are not only talented musicians, they're
solid entertainers in their own right.
They made the choreography look natural and, at one point, the three fiddle
players even had pyro blasting out of their instruments.
Twain kept the banter to a minimum last night, so she did
admit: "It's plain great to be back in Canada. It's great to be back here. It's a beautiful part of the country."
also admitted her band members -- who hail from Canada, the U.S. and Australia -- were complaining about the weather, but
she was having no trouble with the lower temperatures.
"I like the nice cool air. I love it. This is nothing. It's
going to get a lot freakin' colder."
The packed Saddledome crowd was definitely not cold towards Twain. They sang
and danced along right from the beginning. One pre-teen near this scribe didn't stop jumping the entire time.
the fans in the nose-bleed seats, there were huge screens set up around the jumbotron that had the best feature film picture
quality seen in a long time.
Let's hope that Shania catches her breath and gets re-energized before she makes her
rumoured return engagement on June 14 this summer.
Alberta's own Emerson Drive were in overdrive last night as they
opened the show.
They didn't even let the fact the crowd apparently can't tell time -- and continued to stream in
throughout their entire half-hour set -- drain their enthusiasm.
The six-piece band sounded as cool as they looked,
singing their own hits such as I Should Be Sleeping and classics such as Merle Haggard's 1969 number Silver Wings (which is
older than all of the Emerson Drive band members).
The Grande Prairie boys have a hip way of melding country tunes
with a pop-rock sensibility.
THE GLITTER OF THE CANADIAN SUPERSTAR'S SHOW WAS MATCHED BY THE ENTHUSIASM
OF HER FANS AT THE JLC LAST NIGHT
London, ON - John Labatt Centre
May 10, 2004
Courtesy of the London Free Press
Nobody rules centre ice at the John Labatt Centre like Shania Twain.
Using an "in-the-round" format
to get up close and personal last night, the Canadian superstar jumped, strutted and ran all over the centre-ice stage. She
was surrounded by a centre single-night record crowd of 10,269 Twain superfans. Many of the lucky ones were able to reach
up to the stage and have the star bend or kneel for one of the countless autographs or high-fives she handed out.
is back at the centre for another sold-out show tonight. Opening for Twain was the good Alberta country band Emerson Drive.
Maybe tonight's Twain concert will top last night's. That would mean surpassing a 100-minute show that mixed spectacle
with non-stop rockin' crossover country from Canada's reigning superstar.
As Twain tells it, the fans are her stars.
Last night's show was designed to keep the star and the fans in touch.
"It's my biggest thrill to hear you sing one
of my songs. It's kind of my moment," Twain said soothingly after bringing up four nervous young women from Windsor to help
her with You're Still The One.
By the time Twain finished off her encores with Rock This Country!, she was dressed
like a hockey player, fit for a make-believe winter night in a Team Canada jersey. A flurry of purple-and-white confetti and
purple streamers floated down in a gentle blizzard.
She's a superstar who can pull a truly all-ages crowd, from tiny
little Shanias to girlfriends out for the night to guys happy to be along for the show to country fans. Last night, Twain
showed off her keep-workin' energy all night, rivalling the frequent pyro blasts for jolt power. As the show rolled on, her
energy seemed to rise.
Gorgeous as she is, and flowing as her mane may be, Twain's true appeal shows itself in her
friendly, sexy smile. It's bright. It doesn't quit. Like her, it's the real star at work.
Last night, she also had
her Canadiana beaming for her. Twain talked about growing up in small-town Canada and shouted out her love for CBC-TV's The
Beachcombers, even trilling off a little of its theme.
Another fan-friendly note had a flock of drummers brought out
of the audience for (If You're Not In It For Love) I'm Outta Here! The London-area drummers had been auditioned by Twain's
drummers through a competition run by a London radio station.
"It was more fun than a talent show," said Scott Jones,
22, one of the lucky drummers seated in the players' bench awaiting their shot. More than 10 drummers were ushered on stage
for the main set's big finale. The drummers came back high-fiving. Another 22-year-old drummer, Dave De Smit, was among those
standing up for Twain at the end.
Twain also sang in the audience at one point without losing focus.
crew also had the pyro going in beautiful blasts in the early going, without derailing the show.
In a trick opening
last night, she raced through the crowd on her way to the stage. A huge silhouetted figure of a top-hatted woman had appeared
on a circular screen. With her band thundering through the opening of Man! I Feel Like a Woman!, all eyes were on the silhouette.
Suddenly, there was Shania on the run. She was in a form-fitting outfit with black slacks and plenty of sparkling stones about
her, bounding to the stage she would instantly rule.
"Thank you so much for that welcome. Thank you so much London,
Ontario," Twain said early in the set.
It's the Up! tour and her latest hit CD's title track was the second number.
Early on, Twain also kept the concert driving on up with past hits Don't Be Stupid (You Know I Love You) and Whose Bed Have
Your Boots Been Under?
Twain used a prolonged meet-the-band segment with her fine musicians introducing each other
during her first costume change, about 30 minutes into the show. Unfortunately, the costume changes are the down times of
the Up! tour. When Twain is off on a change, you can't help waiting for her to get back.
Twain also spent a lot of
time reaching out to sign autographs. The superstar was friendly and approachable, picking the winning ticket for a charity
raffle. Breakfast for Learning helps school kids get healthy meals. Twain spoke touchingly about her awareness of the need
for such programs because of her own experiences as a child. The lucky fan, a kid from Goderich, had a chance to meet Twain
on stage and have a photo taken with the star.
Among the many fans who held up signs, Twain seemed to get the biggest
kick from a woman whose sign said yesterday was her due date.
"I went to an AC/DC concert when I was about seven months
pregnant," Twain smiled, wishing the mother-to-be well. "This is the baby's first Shania concert."
In addition to
setting single-night attendance and ticket revenue records at the centre, Twain's show set a standard in another way. The
tour's use of big screens to bring Twain's image and the action on stage to fans was the best seen at the centre. All the
full-capacity shows at the centre should bring them to London.
Twain doesn't stop with the projected images. Her organization
makes sure the screens and fireworks and stage visits are right on cue.
Last night, it's clear her super secret is
simple. Twain just loves to meet her fans.
SHANIA KEEPS FIRE BURNING
FANS HOOKED FROM GET-GO
Winnipeg, MB - Winnipeg Arena
June 8, 2004
Courtesy of the Winnipeg Sun
WINNIPEG -- She's a little bit country, a little bit pop and a whole lot of woman who isn't afraid to let
you know she feels like one.
That would be country music superstar, Shania Twain, who brought her Up! tour to Winnipeg
last night and charmed the sold-out crowd of 16,000 with a 90-minute parade of hits, her stunning looks and a flashy stage
The pint-sized Timmins, Ont. native's catchy crossover sound had the audience hooked from the get-go when she
entered the Arena running through the crowd and launched into Man! I Feel Like a Woman!, her breakthrough hit off 1997's Come
The oval stage was set up in the middle of the arena floor with two lighted ramps leading to a central platform
allowing Twain and her eight-piece band to play to the farthest corners of the building.
If you didn't bring binoculars,
eight video screens provided up close views of every booty shake and hand gesture.
All the while Twain strutted, ran
and bounced all over the stage while accepting flowers from audience members, slapping their hands and signing autographs.
Dressed in a white top, glittery black pants and sparkling jewelry around her neck and wrists, Twain looked every bit as glamourous
and fit as the image she has crafted for herself.
She may be one of the top selling artists of all time, but Twain
is out to show she still remembers her roots, inviting raffle ticket winners on stage, getting a young woman from the crowd
to help her sing You're Still the One and performing (If You're Not In It For Love) I'm Outta Here! with Winnipeg's Royal
Canadian Sea Cadet Corps Crusaders drum troupe.
Some of the antics had a way of slowing down the momentum of the show,
especially when she stopped the music altogether to introduce her band while she changed costumes.
Some of the music
doesn't even pretend to be country, such as the electric fiddle driven Up! or the synthesizer based I'm Gonna Getcha Good!
(a lot of her songs seem to end with exclamation marks) but that formula is what has made Twain one of the most popular artists
of all time with sales of over 50 million copies of her four albums.
Most of the set was comprised of big hits from
her last two albums, with all her singles making an appearance including Don't Be Stupid (You Know I Love You), Whose Bed
have Your Boots Been Under? and That Don't Impress Me Much!
For an artist known as much for her fashion as for her
music, Twain was surprisingly subdued in her choice of outfits, although she looked striking in whatever she wore.
show ended with Rock This Country! (see what I said about those exclamation marks?) and a fireworks and confetti display sending
the crowd home happy, if disappointed the concert was only 90 minutes.
STRUCK MY TWAIN
PEOPLE REALLY, REALLY LIKE HER
Edmonton, AB - Rexall Place
June 12, 2004
Courtesy of the Edmonton Sun
EDMONTON -- I burned a road trip mix CD for a friend recently, taking his requested set list of tunes and
diligently cranking out a disc dominated by mainstream hip-hop, some pop-punk, a little trance, a little old-school rap, one
live U2 track ... and Up! by Shania Twain.
When writing out the track list for the CD case, I couldn't help but add
a snide remark next to Up!, something questioning his manliness for wanting Shania to keep company with the likes of Usher,
J-Kwon, the dudes from Eve 6 and even Bono. To me it seemed like a classic case of Sesame Street, "which of these things doesn't
Last night's Shania concert in the round at Rexall Place, the latest stop on her current Up! tour, shows
exactly why Shania can hold her own on a mix CD with the rest of those bad boys. Because her sugar-frosted, from-the-heart
brand of country-pop (or in some cases plain ol' pop-pop, 'cept maybe with a little bit of electric fiddle) crosses more musical
boundaries than any other mainer-than-mainstream act out there. And because she really, really knows how to entertain. And
because people really, really like her.
And she really, really likes her people. Jogging onto the stage while the
audience's attention was diverted by a silhouette of a fake-Shania, the hot mom from Timmins, Ont., launched straight into
Man! I Feel Like A Woman, leaving the women in the sold-out crowd of 16,500 or so feeling just that much more womanly, and
their men presumably wanting them that much more.
Next up was Up!, the kind of sure-thing song a Shania-calibre artist
might normally leave till the end of her show to keep 'em wanting more. But since Shania has more hits than you have boots
that have been under other people's beds, she can afford to use the big guns when firing her opening salvo.
off in a pink and yellow tank top and cavorting under giant video screens and the glow of the occasional blast of pyrotechnics,
the eternally smiling queen of country hit all the expected notes, from praising the city she was visiting - and not in that
lame way some acts do, as though they were just handed an index card with EDMONTON on it from a roadie before walking on stage
-- to ushering out a satisfyingly broad selection of her hits, including Don't Be Stupid (You Know I Love You), Whose Bed
Have Your Boots Been Under?, (If You're Not In It For Love) I'm Outta Here, That Don't Impress Me Much and many other familiar
Shania's love for her fans was also in full effect, and while it was fun, for instance, to see the three shirtless
brothers from Westlock get invited on stage to show off their "SH" "AN" "IA" magic-marker tattoos, it occasionally seems there's
too much time spent meetin' and greetin' and not enough time spent singin'.
This is the third or fourth time I've
seen Shania in Edmonton, so it's hard to say anything that hasn't been said before. But since my dad accompanied me to the
concert, I was able to experience Shania through his eyes. And, I'm told, it was good.
"Great concert, but not enough
midriff," said the senior Tilley, and I'd have to agree - Shania's outfits only hinted at the woman in her. Though that form-fitting
bike jersey thing was nothing to sneeze at.
Dad also dug opening act Emerson Drive, the pride of Grande Prairie, calling
their version of The Devil Went Down to Georgia one that "would make Charlie Daniels proud." That's high praise, boys.
Shania Twain concert is like a big-budget summer blockbuster movie sequel - you know you're going to get exactly what you
expect and you know you're going to have a good time, even if a couple weeks from now the show is merely a vaguely happy,
glitzy, noisy memory.
But that's why we need the Shanias of the world. That, and to add a little variety to mix CDs.
SHANIA TWAIN FANS DESCRIBE THEIR IDOL AT 'DOME CONCERT
Calgary, AB - Pengrowth Saddledome
June 14, 2004
Courtesy of the Calgary Sun
CALGARY -- Shania Twain is not just another pretty face to her fans.
Last night Twain, who last played
here in December, returned to the Saddledome to promote her album Up!
There were a lot of things about the Canadian
superstar the predominantly female fans -- many in their pre-teens -- were 'up' about.
"She's gorgeous and she has
a beautiful voice," said Natalie Mehew, 24, who drove up from Lethbridge with her friend Linda Hay.
"We sang the whole
way up here," added Hay, 22. "I've loved her from the beginning. It's her attitude -- she's a strong woman who gives it her
Other fans drove even further for the chance to see Twain live.
"We drove like six or seven hours,"
said Kabri Emerson, 11, from Butte, Mont. "I like that she's carefree. She wears what she wants -- I'm not a big girly-girl."
Her sister, Rashae, 9, quickly admitted to being a girly-girl and jumped in: "We like her because she's pretty and
she sings good."
Their younger cousins Wesley and Seth Erickson were more emotionally attached: "I love her, I really
do love her," said Seth, 5.
Calgarian Marvin Marion, 28, feels Twain's success can be attributed to the fact she's
a beautiful woman, inside and out.
"From the first time (I saw the Any Man of Mine video), I've loved her voice and
her attitude. She's a strong woman who speaks out, and she does what she wants, no matter what," said Marion. "And I like
the way she interacts with the kids."
And while some mothers at the 'Dome admitted they wouldn't let their daughters
dress like Twain, most thought she was a good influence.
Allana White and her daughter Meghan, 9, flew in from Chilliwack,
B.C., just for the show. "I jumped around the whole house," said Meghan about getting the tickets for Christmas.
mom is also a fan and didn't mind accompanying her daughter. "I think she's a great role model. She's made it through some
tough times and is still successful. And I think that's great for kids to see."
Brenda and Jack Sieb even chose last
night's show to be their three-year-old daughter Amanda's first concert.
"She's a huge fan and can sing all the songs,"
says Brenda. Then Jack adds: "She's constantly singing them, and it drives me nuts."