All Points East review: Christine and the Queens on fire as she paid tribute to pop heroes
Bad weather didn’t dampen the French pop star’s electric headlining performance at All Points East on Sunday, where she, and her dance troupe, stormed the stage and set it ablaze.
Almost quite literally, actually.
At one point during Christine and the Queens', aka Héloïse Letissier, headlining slot - one of her biggest to-date, a bit of the stage caught on fire and had to be extinguished. This was thanks to a pyro-heavy set design that was as sparky as the pocket-sized double threat and the dance ensemble were behind her.
Wearing an oversized red shirt over a black top and trousers, paired with white socks and black shoes, Letissier's outfit was as much of a tribute to Michael Jackson as her moves were. And while Jackson's influence was unmissable, so too was the influence of contemporary choreographers such as Pina Bausch. And just like Jackson, the 30-year-old's performance was equally about the dance as it was the music.
While an ominous sky threatened to break above, the performers moved across the stage together more like a contemporary dance troupe than a singer and her backup dancers. From start to finish, Christine and her troupe lit up the stage with smart, emotionally charged phrases and an energy everybody wanted more of.
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Héloïse's empowered, androgynous queerness coursed through her performance. On-stage, Christine, who identifies as genderqueer and as pansexual, writhed up close to both the men and women in her fairly gender-neutral dance ensemble as she sung her songs about wanting and desire. And also songs about being different too. Her song Tilted, which is about feeling out of place, was a set highlight (aside from ALL the choreography) and unsurprisingly unified the bedraggled crowd in singing along. To introduce it, Christine shouted, "Out of place, out of time, out of control… Man, it feels good to be out."
Opening on Comme si, Letissier's set also included Girlfriend, Les Paradis Perdus and 5 Dollars. As well as covering both her albums, Chaleur Humaine (2014) and Chris (2018), Letissier mixed in Luniz's I got 5 on it, Janet Jackson's Nasty and David Bowie's We Could Be Heroes, which was another set highlight.
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By the time she thanked the crowd for one last time, a triumphant Christine and the Queens had shown the crowd that she knows how to wow.