Live Review: Sophie Ellis-Bextor @ The Royal Concert Hall

After her highly popular ‘kitchen discos’ during the lockdowns of 2020, Sophie Ellis-Bextor decided to bring her glittery and energetic performances to venues all across the UK with her Kitchen Disco Tour. Millie Hopcott reviews.

Replicating the chaos and unpredictability of her home performances streamed across Facebook and Instagram live, her new live shows feature a whole range of exciting and unexpected aspects. Starting the show sat on a huge replica of a plastic toy horse, Sophie started with a bang with her classic Take Me Home. Whilst she was sat on a massive horse, her band all had different animal masks on; her bassist (and husband, Richard) donned a shark mask and a guitar that looked like some kind of space ship from Star Wars, the drummer had a pigeon mask, the guitarist had a gorilla mask on, and the keys-player had some kind of weird mask which I couldn’t quite work out. Thankfully, they didn’t keep these on during the whole show as that would have been quite strange, but the excitement didn’t end there! Bringing, in the words of Sophie: ''a little bit of unpredictability'', she brought on a big wheel with different songs that she could sing, spinning it to let fate decide what would happen next. Landing on All Night Long by Lionel Richie, the crowd were absolutely loving it.

''Everyone was clearly there to have a good time despite it being a Tuesday night''

What I really enjoyed was the set up of the stage; they had designed it to look just like Sophie’s kitchen in her actual home, with mock-ups of her big windows, red window seat and, of course, the big glitter ball. The crowd were obviously prepared, and many of them wore bedazzled clothes with sequins and shiny accessories. Everyone was clearly there to have a good time despite it being a Tuesday night! Singing tracks from her recent album Songs from the Kitchen Disco, Sophie included hits such as Bittersweet and Mixed Up World. The latter of which she sung whilst sat at a pretend cocktail bar, drinking what turned out to be water, from cocktail glasses with her guitarist.

In between songs, Sophie recalled facts about Nottingham which she said we had all probably heard before, which maybe many others did, but I did not! One fact which stuck out the most is that apparently the world's oldest guinea pig, Snowball, lived in Nottingham and died at the grand age of 14! I think this just really showed the endearing nature of Sophie Ellis-Bextor. She is an absolutely incredibly singer, who is both elegant and glamorous in equal amounts! Having a couple of quick changes through the show, Sophie still maintained a sparkly and chic look throughout, somehow managing to dance and jump around with a pair of shiny high heels!

Though I was probably one of the youngest there, it didn’t stop me having a good time dancing to absolute classics such as Murder on the Dancefloor and Groovejet (If This Ain’t Love). The crowd were up and dancing for most of the songs, and had a sit down during the slower ones such as Young Blood. When singing some songs, she did little dance routines which the crowd copied, bringing lots of joy to her fans. She mentioned how this reminded her of when she went on tour with Steps as they do lots of dance routines.

For her encore, she surprised the crowd by appearing on the first tier of seating whilst her band still played. Everyone on the floor seats looked up adoringly at Sophie as she leant on the balcony railings, looking ethereal with her flowing mesh dress. She then became even more heavenly as she sung a cover of the Sound of Music classic, My Favorite Things, completely acoustically with her violinists in tow, and not a microphone in sight. Making sure the room was quiet before she started, the silence let her very impressive vocals shine through, ending the concert on a high.

Millie Hopcott


Edited by: Amrit Virdi

Featured image courtesy of Millie Hopcott. No changes made to this image. Permission to use granted to The Mic.

In-article videos courtesy of Sophie Ellis-Bextor via YouTube.