Die-hard fans singing their hearts out to every song, grateful for being able to spend the night together with everyone.
Where: Massey Hall, 178 Victoria St. Toronto
When: Fri., Mar. 18
Vibe: Die-hard fans singing their hearts out to every song, grateful for being able to spend the night together with everyone.
Highlight: Mitski being fully committed to her dancing during the entire set.
Next: Eastern U.S tour and European dates throughout April and May.
Mitski wears a pair of nude-coloured knee pads under her twirly white dress. They come in handy as she dances through her set, often falling on her knees suddenly for dramatic effect. She’s quiet between songs, not allowing the many cheers to distract her from her Friday night performance at Toronto’s Massey Hall.
The show opens with Laurel Hell single Love Me More and races through fan favourites without pause. It’s only when the show’s nearly over that Mitski addresses the crowd: “I missed my cue to say ‘Hello’ at the beginning and then it got awkward.”
The only stage prop is a full-sized white door, left unopened for the whole show, though Mitski occasionally interacts with it, like during Should’ve Been Me when she knocks in time with the music.
Mitski acts out her song lyrics with full commitment, like she’s pantomiming the story in a one-woman play. The dance moves are planned out but not so precise that they seem choreographed. She’s comfortable on stage, shuddering and at times dancing erratically, mimicking the movements of a marionette doll. When she reaches towards the crowd, hands beckon back at her with love.
She asks the crowd to help out with singing Washing Machine Heart together, as she explains with good humour: “I’m sick with a cold. After two years of isolation … the fucking common cold got me.”
Although, the audience probably would have never been able to tell that she was sick if she hadn’t mentioned it, with the way she’s still singing at full power and tossing herself around on stage.
For her encore, the indie rock star plays Be The Cowboy closer Two Slow Dancers. The audience is silent, rapt with attention as she savours the last song of the night. She’s already mesmerizing to watch during the upbeat songs, but she shines even on the lower-energy songs, drawing everyone into the moment.
There’s an air of gratefulness, from Mitski to her fans and from the fans to Mitski. She conveys this through polite bows to the crowd, and a small “Thank you” before walking off stage to end the show.