Nothing short of show-stopping, JoJo Siwa made her presence known in Las Cruces, New Mexico at the 105th stop of her D.R.E.A.M. tour on Wednesday, Jan. 26. A masterful stage presence complete with five costume changes made for a captivating performance from Siwa that I’m glad I didn’t miss.
The show as a whole used childlike creativity and joy. Dancers rolled around on Heelys, themes of cotton candy and rainbow brightened the night, Siwa’s outfits were bedazzled with jewels that made her shimmer like a disco ball onstage: what more can you ask for? This, combined with spectacular effort and skill, created a show that grabbed my attention and felt larger than life.
Siwa first came into the public eye as a child dancer on “Dance Moms” and continues to dazzle the stage with her presence. Over the past year, Siwa has won over the hearts of many with her performance with Jenna Johnson on “Dancing with the Stars” as the show’s first same-sex pairing.
While the bright, outlandish costumes are a staple of any pop star, Siwa’s dancing ultimately stole the show with energetic and electrifying choreography. When performing “#1U,” Siwa did a jive dance number with backup dancer Ezra Sosa; this, choreographed by Johnson, showed off Siwa’s more technical dance skills well.
When Siwa sang “Back To That Girl” and “Nobody Can Change Me” with her hair up into a high ponytail topped off with a bow, everyone could clearly see the melodramatic ode to her younger self. This sweet, lighthearted way of honoring the image that first gained her a lot of attention — one that she is now starting to grow out of — was touching. The original, upbeat and optimistic singles she performed also delighted her younger audience.
Siwa didn’t direct her attention just at the younger audience, but also aimed to entertain all generations present at her show. Kicking back into the classics, Siwa performed a medley of Queen songs, including “We Will Rock You,” “Another One Bites the Dust” and “We Are the Champions.” Informing the kids they might not know the songs before she started, she still kept all audience members entertained by using thematic baseball game elements while singing, using a scoreboard and even dropping to do push-ups.
Throughout the show, the connection between Siwa and her backup dancers was clear. Their genuine friendship made the show even more enjoyable to watch, and it was obvious that they were all having the time of their lives performing. They brought me, as an audience member, into that friendship, and let me in on their excitement and euphoria.
The technicalities of lighting and special effect work made the concert feel like a light show in and of itself. Cascading showers of light the pink, red, blue and purple hues added an extra pizazz to the over-the-top nature of the show.
The show encapsulated what I love most about pop stars: a bright, dramatic and hyper-feminine image. This was infused into the performance and created an unforgettable experience. Through neon colors, eccentric backdrops and vivid emotions, Siwa created a captivating and eccentric performance that left me humming along all the way back to the parking lot.
Madeline Pukite is a beat reporter at the Daily Lobo. They can be contacted at email@example.com, or on Twitter @madelinepukite
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