Reviewed by Ross McRae
Even though she has been a pop superstar for almost 15 years, Jennifer Lopez has rarely ventured into the world of live performance.
Despite an enviable back catalogue of hit singles, Lopez has spent the majority of her career focusing on films, fashion and fragrance brands and more recently adding judge on American Idol to her repertoire.
During her commercial peak in the early 2000s, much doubt was cast over whether, like fellow US pop star Britney Spears, Lopez could even sing live.
With a massive musical resurgence in the last 2 years thanks mainly to monster hit On The Floor, Lopez embarked on her first world tour earlier this year, which kicked off its Australian leg at Perth Arena on Thursday night.
Despite being 30 minutes late, from the moment Lopez appeared on the stage, the audience went wild - and the singer lapped up every minute.
Dressed in a sheer embellished catsuit, which didn't leave much of her curvaceous toned body to the imagination, Lopez threw herself into the 2005 minor hit Get Right, proving right from the beginning she wanted to be there and she was going to sing live.
Her voice, aided by backing vocalists and at times a backing tape, was strong and more than capable of recreating the radio and club hits such as Love Don't Cost a Thing and Waiting for Tonight which came early in the 90-minute set.
The terrific acoustics of Perth Arena would have also supported Lopez in sounding as good as she did.
Much to fans delight, the 43-year-old returned to her Bronx roots in the second part of the fast-paced high-energy show, with her Ja Rule collaborations I'm Real and Ain't it Funny and the tongue in cheek Jenny from The Block stand outs.
The sets were minimal for such a large-scale pop spectacle and some of the staging clumsy, but all eyes were, of course, on Lopez and even with her petite frame she had more than enough star power to fill the stage.
Her warm stage banter was a highlight and showed a down to earth professional who was actually excited about being on stage performing for her fans, rather than a pop diva who was going through the motions.
The pyrotechnic-laden final act brought the house down, with the 1999 Gloria Estefan-penned hit Let’s Get Loud getting the biggest reaction before On the Floor closed the main set.The obligatory encore followed, with Lopez’s current boyfriend, the tour’s choreographer Casper Smart, 25, joining her on stage for a brief but bizarre dance off during Dance Again.
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