It was a show of epic proportions. With Cirque du Soleil-style dancers, eight costume changes and a stage fit for a disco queen, Kylie Minogue’s Saturday night concert at the Patriot Center was an escape to another world. Another world, that is, where svelte Greek warriors wear feathers, the law of gravity is defied and calories (apparently) don’t exist.
For her mythology-themed “Aphrodite — Les Folies” tour, Minogue pulled out all the stops. Given that the Australian starlet has been high on international pop charts for 20 years but has never quite won over the United States — this is her second stateside tour — the grandeur is entertaining, if a bit overdue.
And grand it was. The $25 million tour boasts three sprawling staircases, aerial acrobatics and a series of larger-than-life props including a Pegasus statue set among mighty Grecian columns.
For Minogue, 42 and fit as ever, the stage was also a runway. Drawing as much attention as the special effects were her staggering Dolce & Gabbana custom gowns and elaborate headdresses.
Opening with the title track from her 11th album, “Aphrodite” (2010), Minogue emerged from beneath the stage in a large shell a la Botticelli’s Venus. In keeping with the theatrical theme, she circled the stage in a chariot pulled by men in leather loincloths, sang a rock rendition of her U.S. hit “Can’t Get You Out of My Head” (2001) and, for the encore, layered her crew on a three-tiered cake stage for “All the Lovers” before sinking out of sight.
Minogue is proof that it pays to know your audience. A nod to her legion of gay fans, the evening was largely a homage to the male figure. Scantily clad dancers paraded the stage in gold armor while homoerotic images reminiscent of Abercrombie & Fitch ads flashed on video screens behind them.
It takes a secure soul to throw caution to the wind and join this shimmying collective, but Minogue’s audience leapt aboard. The stadium was only half full, yet there wasn’t a still body in the house.
It could be argued that the show was not particularly meaningful, and it wasn’t, but that was hardly the point. Where Minogue differs from American pop divas such as Lady Gaga and Madonna is that she takes herself less seriously. She, like her audience, was there to promote only one agenda: having a good time.
Perhaps this explains her spirited gay following. Free from political statement or hidden message, Minogue is unapologetically true to herself.