A video montage opens the show highlighting her illustrious career, signalling Tina Arena’s grand entrance to her home town stage where she has decided to bring her life’s work to an amazing two hour extravaganza.
Tina needs no introduction, she has been in the public eye for a while. Some of that time has been in France, but now we’ve got her back and its a delight for the audience and her respectively.
There was always going to be a lot to cover for a woman that has had an illustrious four decade career, but cover it she does, and with nothing short of excellence. She is graceful as she glides across the stage performing hits ” Burn”, ” Heaven help my heart”, ” Sorrento Moon” and of course a slightly jazzy version of the song that started it all – ” Chains”. Mind you, this is only the first half, but Tina powers through like a true professional. Bringing the gorgeous Kate Miller- Heidke to the stage for a duet of the mournful ” Not still in love with you” the two sing side by side in perfect harmony a powerful ballad, a song that speaks to every woman in the room and how we’ve all felt at one point in our lives.
There is a quick intermission where Tina asks us to all go get a ” Little drinky poos” and its back to business. The second half sees Tina relax a little more and have a little laugh with the audience. She is charming, funny and a down to earth woman. Bringing a moment of fun to the show Tina introduces special guest internet sensation Nonna Paola to the stage, where Nonna blesses us all. Its a moment for Tina to humbly remind the audience that there are good things out there worth switching onto.
With all the costume changes, the hits covered Tina has been nothing short of entertaining. People in their seats are up and dancing and having a really good time. Members of the audience constantly calling out their love for the beauty.
Whilst there has been some mention in the media about her age ( and unfairly so) Tina and her contemporaries ( Madonna, Kate Cebrano, Wendy Matthews) prove that its not the age of the performer but the calibre of the performance. Regardless of her age she is beautiful, her voice flawless and her energy infectious – and hopefully enough to silence critics. She both looks stunning and proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that her ability to entertain is what matters the most and for anyone to even mention her age and not highlight her spectacular talent is nothing short of ridiculous. She is delightful and her voice is powerful enough to give even the most stiff person in the room chills.
Saving the best for last ” Wasn’t it good”, ” If I didn’t love you” there is a short break before the final encore of ” Now I can Dance” and ” You set Fire to My Life” as Tina thanks everyone for attending and wishes everyone a safe trip home.
Its been a wonderful journey through the Tina Arena song book, two hours of fun, dancing and fabulous entertainment. As the crowd files out into the cold Melbourne night, humming along to her music and buzzing with energy, one thing is certain- we collectively hope to see Tina return to the stage again soon.
Words by Amanda Lee Starkey
Behind the lens Amanda Lee Starkey