From teary-eyed dedications to an audience call on and a cameo from his dad, Robbie Williams’ concert at The Pointe on Friday night had it all.
Initially a slow starter despite opening with the upbeat ‘Let Me Entertain You’, reuniting with Williams came with all the awkwardness of meeting up with an old friend again and being dumbstruck by how old you had all become.
But after a dedication to George Michael with ‘Freedom’ to mark the funeral of the late musician’s sister who was buried earlier that day, he then lightened the tone with some jokes about himself.
“Is anyone else here from the last century,” he quipped before beginning what was essentially more of ‘an audience with’ than a concert.
With ‘Strong’ came the lyrics ‘I’m still young, I’m still young’ before he exclaimed in fright ‘I’m middle aged!’
This broke the ice and left everyone in hysterics as he confronted what everyone must having been thinking of his advanced skinhead look with sequinned silver jacket and dad bod.
Interactions between tracks took the gig more down the path of a stand-up comedy act with some songs thrown in, as the 45-year-old captivated the audience with his British sense of humour and all round ability to hold court.
During ‘Come Undone’ and the line ‘I’m still your son’ he then asked the crowd ‘am I still your son, Dubai?’ before a raucous response.
Jokes about how lyrics had gone from anger and angst in his younger days only to turn into songs about camomile tea and school runs kept cropping up as he addressed his transformation from Take That days to a contented family man, and with that came dedications to his three kids with ‘Love My Life’.
Between this he attempted to shoot merchandise into the crowd with a T-shirt gun if the audience sang along loud enough but it hilariously malfunctioned and left him throwing them into the crowd himself.
Then Francesca, an Italian expat fitness instructor, was called on stage from the crowd ready for Williams to serenade with ‘Something Stupid’ before his dad joined him with ‘Sweet Caroline’ as the concert took a crooner route in reference to his cover albums.
The Take That breakaway was referenced with ‘No Regrets’ before a dedication to his wife ended the show with ‘Angels’ and a fantastic fireworks display overlooking the Atlantis.
A deeply personal concert you left the show with a greater understanding of the man as much as the artist.