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Ariana Grande – Wells Fargo Center – Philadelphia, PA – June 24, 2019 (A Concert Review)

Ariana Grande

Ariana Grande – Wells Fargo Center – Philadelphia, PA – June 24, 2019

Ariana Grande graced the stage at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia for the second time this year on Monday June 24th for her Sweetener World Tour. Following the release of her two most recent albums, Sweetener and thank u next, which were put out into the world just under 6 months apart from each other, Grande decided that it was time to hit the road again.

Supporting Grande on this tour is Normani, who began her career as a solo artist following the split of Fifth Harmony. Also on the bill was Social House, a duo originally from Pittsburgh PA that produced two of Grande’s hits, “thank u, next” and “7 Rings.”

Michael “Mikey” Foster and Charles “Scootie” Anderson, otherwise known as Social House, took the stage first. The pair released their first single “Magic in the Hamptons” featuring Lil Yachty in June of last year. Their latest single, “Haunt You” features vocals from Grande herself. Their set was short but sweet, with just two guys, they were able to fill the very large stage with their energetic presence.

With a full band and a number of dancers by her side, Normani hit the stage next. Her set included a number of covers, including a mashup of Rihanna songs. In addition, Normani sang her own work such as “Dancing with a Stranger” (a collaboration with Sam Smith), “Love Lies” (a collaboration with Khalid), and more.

Ariana Grande

I hadn’t looked at Normani’s setlist before the show began, therefore my inner Fifth Harmony fan was pleasantly surprised when the intro for “Work from Home” began to play. A mashup of “Work from Home,” “Worth It,” and “BO$$” brought the audience a little taste of some of Normani’s work from her time in Fifth Harmony. During those songs, Normani let the music play and took a break from singing to move into a dance break. Seeing as though Normani has been dancing ever since she was a kid, you can imagine how great it was to watch!

As fans waited for Grande to take the stage, her preshow playlist managed to keep the crowd entertained and get them even more excited than they already were. Songs like “No Scrubs” by TLC, “Wannabe” by the Spice Girls, and “I Want It That Way” by the Backstreet Boys, had the whole arena singing along, including the Wells Fargo Center ushers!

As the clock approached 9:45, the lights when down, the screams began, and the intro to “God Is A Woman” started to play. Grande and her dancers rose up from underneath the stage to kick off the show. The visuals onstage were centered around a common theme of space and the sky. With a large globe sitting in the center of the main screen on stage and half of a sphere on the ceiling, projections of the moon, the clouds, the stars and more filled the screen.

Ariana Grande

Grande’s performance included songs from each of her albums, with more emphasis on her most recent work in Sweetener and thank u, next. Songs like “Right There” and “You’ll Never Know,” brought us back to 2013. During “7 Rings,” a pink car rose up onto the stage with Philly written on the side of it.

Grande’s set was split up into five acts and an encore. Between each act video played on the screen, some of which included clips of Grande as a kid. In celebration of pride month, rainbow lights covered the stage and the crowd during “Break Free.” Grande and her dancers ended the show with “thank u, next” and skipped across the stage as confetti flew into the crowd waving their pride flags. Grande then handed her flag to a lucky fan in the audience and made her way off the stage as the music played to close out the show.

Ariana Grande has always been one of my favorite artists to see live and she never fails to put on an incredible show and create an environment that makes everyone in the audience feel comfortable and accepted. Grande just recently announced more US dates to the Sweetener World Tour following her European dates in the fall and if you have the chance, I highly recommend going to see her!

Ruth Bekele

Copyright ©2019 All rights reserved. Posted: June 26, 2019.

Photos © 2019 Getty Images/Kevin Mazur. Courtesy of PMK-BNC.

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