Glitter in the Sky, Glitter in Mia’s Eye at Dua Lipa Concert


Aria Balani

Dancers on stage while singing hit song “Electricity”

It’s 9:05 on a chilly Wednesday night in Chicago when the lights go off. Worries and anticipation over Project Week, Spring Break, and COVID all disappear as a tall brunette figure in a neon yellow catsuit rises from below and takes center stage at the United Center.
So begins the concert of 26-year-old English singer-songwriter Dua Lipa. After receiving two Grammys (Best New Artist and Best Dance Recording for her hit song “Electricity”), Lipa released her second album, Future Nostalgia. The week her album came out, Lipa became the top female artist on Spotify’s listening charts. Last year, Lipa was nominated for six Grammy awards and won Best Pop Vocal Album.
After being postponed multiple times due to the COVID pandemic, Lipa’s tour kicked off in Florida last month. It was worth the wait. The energy in the United Center on the night of March 9 never died down. Balloons fell from the rafters, and vibrant outfits and dancing electrified the arena throughout the 19-song setlist.
“The set design was a lot more prominent in Dua Lipa’s performance with the lights, stage entrances, disco balls, confetti, and a lot more,” Latin freshman Natalie Arora said.
Freshman Lavery Griffin, another concert attendee, said, “The concert was amazing! The lights, show, and the overall atmosphere was so good. My favorite part was definitely when Dua Lipa performed the song ‘Electricity.’”
Natalie agreed. “I thought that the concert was seamlessly done,” she said. “The choreography was effortless, the costume changes were amazing, and the set design was specially done for every song.”
“The huge ensemble of dancers was definitely different to other concerts I’ve been to,” Natalie added. “There were a lot of choreographed dances for every song, so her backup dancers brought a lot of energy to the stage. … This concert in comparison to other concerts really emphasized performance rather than the music, though the music was phenomenal.”

Aria Balani

While most of the songs were from her most recent album, Future Nostalgia, Lipa sang fan favorites from earlier releases such as “New Rules,” “Electricity,” and “One Kiss.” The heartwarming single, “Cold Heart,” released in August 2021 as a duet with Elton John, was one of my personal favorites. All singers and dancers lined up together, swaying and singing as one. The community and togetherness gave a sense of hope through these unprecedented times. Two backup singers held the rainbow flag, signifying inclusivity.
“I really appreciated that she sang older songs,” freshman Olivia Harris said. “I also really loved her outfits, and I think they all matched the songs she wore them for.”
Lavery added, “I think that this concert was one of my favorite concerts yet!”
“Levitating,” Dua’s most popular song and most played on the radio in 2021, was one of the biggest spectacles of the night (copyright lawsuits notwithstanding). Lipa literally levitated above the stage while the crowd buzzed with excitement, singing (more like screaming) along with her.
“I thought that the song ‘Levitating’ was a great example of the creativity used to tie in special effects with the performance,” Natalie said. “The stage suspended in the air, and there were laser beams coming from her stage that moved along the audience. I thought this moved the audience into an alternate atmosphere, which really highlighted the theme of the song.”
Overall, the performance, the atmosphere, and of course the music made the late night worth it. Wednesday night at the United Center definitely “took me for a ride.”