As promised, here is my recap of Jacky’s concert, which I flew to Las Vegas to watch this past weekend. Just like with his previous concerts, getting the chance to watch and hear Jacky sing live is one of those experiences that is worth every single penny paid for the ticket (which in this case, caused me upwards of $500 for the most expensive VIP ticket option once all taxes and fees were factored in)! This year was particularly special because of the 4-sided stage that Jacky chose to utilize for his entire concert tour, which meant that it would allow him to get more up close to fans for one and two, no matter which side audiences sat on, it was guaranteed that they would get some amount of personal interaction and also a more enhanced viewing experience. Therefore, with this concert, it was especially advantageous to sit closer to the stage, which is why I chose to buy the most expensive tickets available – I ended up in one of the first 9 rows in my section with a seat very close to the aisle on the side of the stage, which provided me the perfect vantage point to all the action on stage. Needless to say, I was super happy with the seat I ended up getting (despite being a bit apprehensive at first due to the stressful ticket purchasing process and also not being able to choose seats at the time of purchase).
I went to the Saturday night 8pm show (Jacky did a total of 2 shows at MGM – one on Saturday night and the other on Sunday afternoon, 3pm) and of course, being the type of person who is always super-prepared and never likes rushing or doing anything last minute, I flew in from Los Angeles the night before the concert (on Friday, 2/16) and did some walking around to get a feel for the venue (obviously I don’t go to Las Vegas often, since I’m not a gambler and not particularly into watching shows, even the ones that HK artists often go there to perform – pretty much the only reason I have to go to Vegas is for Jacky’s concert). Both of the two previous Jacky concerts I went to (his “1/2 Century Tour” in 2012 and his “Year of Jacky Cheung” tour in 2007) were at Caesar’s Palace, which was a much smaller venue – this was the first time he performed at MGM Grand Garden Arena and since his concert this time around was being organized by his record company Universal rather than an “official” concert organizer like previously, I was curious to see how different the experience would be. One of the first things I noticed was that there seemed to be a lot less “promo” material for the concert this time around. I did see a few banners outside of MGM Grand hotel advertising the concert and all of the Chinese-themed restaurants in the hotel also had signs at the entrance with his concert poster on them -- which, curiously were there on Friday night when I walked around but were removed already by the time I walked through again Saturday mid-morning (I had a few friends who actually arrived on Saturday around lunch time and they commented that they almost thought they were in the wrong place because there were no posters whatsoever when they walked through). Not sure what the deal was with the posters and why they were removed so soon (especially when there was to be another show on Sunday) but not really a big deal I guess – just thought it was a little weird.
The night of the concert, I actually went down to the arena a little before 7pm to line up and was shocked to see that there were already thousands of people there, patiently waiting in line to get through security (and here I thought that I was super early, lol). I forgot that MGM’s arena could sit 13,000 plus people (especially with the 4-sided stage this time around), so I guess seeing about a thousand people already there that early was “normal” given the total number of people expected (side note – we ended up starting late, around 8:15pm, because so many people were still outside the arena waiting to get in). Seeing that we started late, I was actually a little worried that some of the songs might get cut, but it turns out I had nothing to worry about because Jacky gave us 100% of the performance he gave at the other stops and then some (just to put things in perspective, the concert ran for 3.5 hours, with Jacky singing nearly 40 songs – definitely a record!).
In terms of the concert itself – IT. WAS. AWESOME!!!! Jacky gave a mind-blowing performance and as is his usual style, he put 110% effort into giving us a show that was worthy of all the time and money we spent to get there! Getting to hear Jacky sing live was already a treat in and of itself, but to see all the effort he put into the dancing for his fast songs – given that he is already 56 years old and dancing was never really his strong suit – I had nothing but admiration and respect for Jacky, especially at that moment! During the “talking” segment halfway into the concert, when Jacky talked about being ill right before the concert and also suffering from jetlag and insomnia (he arrived in Vegas the Friday prior to the first show but had barely slept), my heart broke a little because I knew how tired he must have been but being the perfectionist he always is, I knew that also meant he pushed himself extra hard to make sure Saturday’s performance would be flawless (and it WAS for the most part, with only a few imperfections here and there with a few songs – largely unnoticeable in my opinion and definitely didn’t detract from his overall performance). I hope that Jacky was able to rest up a bit more prior to Sunday’s show (which I wasn’t able to attend due to that show being added so much later and my schedule already being set) but if not, I can only hope that Jacky takes care of himself and gets sufficient rest prior to his next stop (in Australia), which thankfully isn’t until March 9th (a little over 2 weeks away).
I know with the recaps I did for Jacky’s previous two concerts, I had “complained” about some annoyances I had with rude audience members and whatnot but this time around, I really didn’t have much to complain about. Perhaps it’s because this time I made a conscious effort not to pay as much attention to people around me or maybe I was just too excited to be sitting so close to the stage for the first time in my life and getting to see Jacky perform so up close that everything else just paled in comparisons. The concert experience this time around was beyond amazing and absolutely unforgettable! Oh and I definitely have to put in a word about the “magic sticks” that each of us had waiting for us at our seats – talk about an “enhanced” concert experience, that was a wonderful touch to an already amazing show! Looking back even now, I am still in awe of how that stick was “timed” so well to the music, to the point that it turned off automatically (despite on/off switch being in the “on” position) during certain songs and turned back on or changed colors during others – truly “magical” and I have to say that I’ve never seen anything like it (not that I’ve been to many concerts in my life, but specifically for Jacky’s previous concerts, compared to the simple “glow sticks” that we had gotten for those, this “magic stick” was definitely a major upgrade, lol)!
I will end this post with the rundown of all the songs Jacky sang that night, though a quick disclaimer that despite having “written down” all the songs during the concert, there is still a possibility I might have missed something during the segments when I was too immersed in Jacky’s performance to pay attention to what I was doing. So if anyone who is reading this was also there for Saturday night’s show and see that I may have missed a song or two, please definitely let me know (thank you)! Oh and anyone who had attended Saturday night or Sunday afternoon’s show (or both), please feel free to share your thoughts as well!
Jacky Cheung “A Classic Tour” Concert – Saturday, February 17, 2018 – Song List