- 18 Jan 17
Adele is an all too rare example of a celebrity visibly retaining their humanity under the spotlight. Ed Power recalls the moment last year when Adele embraced her superstar status yet somehow found a way to stay normal.
On a rainy February night this writer wended his way through the streets of Belfast towards the Odyssey Arena and an appointment with one of pop’s more reluctant superstars. Adele, one woman saviour of the recording industry, had chosen the city as starting point for her largest ever world tour and, on that drizzle-flecked evening, questions hung over her ability to deliver before a mass audience.
Adele’s 122-date jaunt around the globe has gone on to become a proper blockbuster, with a cumulative 1.5 million fans forking out over $150 million to see her. The tour is now set to continue through to summer 2017 and a four night farewell at Wembley. However, ahead of kick off in Belfast, there were real doubts that a notoriously nervous performer could bend an arena to her will. Would this be a “hello” to remember? Or might her attempt to set fire to the rain prove a damp squib?
She had, until then, refused to play larger rooms. Her music was meant to be enjoyed intimately – and, so, should be performed in an intimate space. But with the clamour to see her reaching deafening levels, it was felt Adele no longer had a choice. This shy schoolgirl turned soul phenomenon was about to join Beyoncé, Madonna, Taylor et al at pop’s highest table.