Lindsey Stirling is a unique, rare find, like a real-life fae captivating audiences with her violin, taking them on an epic quest across the seven seas, through rich, magical forests and to the moon itself. Armed with nothing but her trusty violin – or five – she enchanted the audience in London upon one mystical night, captivating them with her mystical tunes.
Live at the Apollo theatre in Hammersmith, London, Lindsey Stirling brought a little splash of magic to the 8,000 strong crowd – leaving them with a night that they’d never forget. I, myself, was wrapped up in the magic of it all, enchanted, amused and enthralled for the hour and a half set.
Confession: Okay, before I get started with this tour review, I have a confession to make… I’ve only known of Lindsey Stirling for the past nine days. Nine! Days! How has this magnificent being managed to elude my gaze for all of these years?
When my Dad played me ‘Shatter Me’ one rainy Sunday morning, I was immediately in love. With Lindsey. With her music. With her creativity and drive. I immediately knew there was something special about her; a unique creature made up of authenticity and talent. That’s why, an hour later, I’d bought tour tickets. And I’m so so happy that I did.
Opening the show with ‘Artemis’, Lindsey came out with a bang. As it was my first Lindsey concert, I naively thought that surely she couldn’t dance the way she does in her music videos and play the violin at the same time? Surely that was all just clever editing or something. Nope, nope, nope. Lindsey prances across the stage, mimicking the exact choreography from the ‘Artemis’ music video, step for step. I was immediately flabbergasted. The talent just pours off of her; from every perfectly placed step to every hum from her instrument. It was in that very moment I decided that I’d be a Lindsey Stirling fan for life. ‘Artemis’ well and truly set the tone for the entire show: an astounding display of raw, pure talent.
She makes use of each and every inch of that stage; leaping and twirling and prancing and dancing across the width of the entire thing. There was also an orb-like centrepiece, with a backdrop that mimicked the rest of the stage design, changing from a moon to a fire pit to a snow globe and back again – one that Lindsey frequently leapt into to be hoisted up 20 feet in the air. (I was tired just watching her…)
Lindsey Stirling’s ‘Artemis’ tour truly is a spectacle. From choreographed umbrella dance numbers, silk-draped floating orbs and laser swords, it’s something you have to witness with your own eyes to truly appreciate.
My absolute favourite part of the show was when she performed ‘Master of Tides’, which, instead of being a usual choreographed number, was a ‘choose your own adventure’ style performance. During the song, two choices appeared on the screen, eg. ‘Sweep the deck’ or ‘Pick Lindsey’s pockets’ – two different styles of dance. Whichever option got the loudest reaction from the crowd was what the dancers and Lindsey would then perform.
But it was seamless. There wasn’t a pause, or an adjustment – not a second was wasted. Lindsey and her team listened, and then somehow managed to slip into whatever choreography the crowd demanded. Honestly, I’ve never seen anything like it. Never in all of the shows I’ve attended have I seen something so unique, yet executed so flawlessly.
The show wasn’t just special because of the grandeur of the stage and the slick talent, though. It also shone through because of Lindsey herself. She frequently interacted with the audience, laughing with them, asking them questions, responding to everything people were shouting out – and it was a delight to see. She was genuine, sincere, and it shone out of her like moonlight.
For example, during the aforementioned choose your own adventure segment, when ‘Pick Lindsey’s pockets’ was chosen by the crowd, somebody yelled out “Welcome to London!”, which was met by raucous laughter from the audience. Lindsey stood for a moment, before declaring “I don’t know how to react because I didn’t hear you! Should I be shocked? Upset? Scared?” And then resumed her playing. It’s the sincerity of her that truly is special.
She also declared that she sent Piers Morgan a personal invite to the show – after he said she’d never sell out arenas or make a career out of what she’s now doing – which he declined. She constantly added personal flairs to the show, telling us she still writes in her gratitude journal every night, or pausing briefly with a towel only to declare: “This is the only moment I get to wipe the sweat off my face!” It’s these grounded, human touches that provide a beautiful balance to the fantastical adventure she swept us away on.
But the true gem that Lindsey gifted to the audience was that of self-love. She shared with us her battles with anorexia and depression, telling us she felt hopeless, listening only to the self-hating voice in her own mind. She told the audience that, as grateful as she was that we all showed her so much love, she wished that we would all look inwards and tell ourselves that we were amazing, we were loved and we were talented, as we don’t do it enough. The empowerment shone down from the stage and onto the crowd.
The set-list was perfect enough to keep old and new fans alike happy. Being the ‘Artemis’ tour, it was mainly focused on her newest album, with throwbacks to some of her classic hits thrown in. You could feel the palpable, electric energy in the air when she performed ‘Roundtable Rival’, and how everyone hung on the edge of their seat during the dramatic ‘Shatter Me’.
She also did a marvellous medley of British hits for the London crowd, with ‘Hey Jude’ and ‘You Really Got Me’ going down a treat.
A tender moment entered the set list with a cover of Lindsey’s favourite song, ‘Hallelujah’. Goosebumps. Goosebumps everywhere. It was a delicate little moment that showcased how truly talented she is.
The only slightly disappointment was when Lindsey was describing ‘Love Goes On And On’, with Lindsey saying that she now has the privilege to work with her idol – and now friend – Amy Lee. I was perched on the edge of my seat, expecting Amy to pop out on stage. Judging by the few phones that lit up like Christmas lights around me, I wasn’t the only one.
Each and every person involved in bringing the ‘Artemis’ tour to life should be proud of how special the show was. From the backup dancers who were just as energetic as Lindsey, to the band, to the sound team and the lightning engineers – they all worked together to take us all away on a magical journey.
Even the interludes were impressive, featuring an astounding mash-up of her ‘Artemis’ music videos, detailing how the moon should inspire us all to bring light into the darkness. It added to the tale she was weaving, and splashed a little bit of magic even when Lindsey wasn’t on the stage.
Lindsey captured all of our hearts at the Eventim Apollo, taking us on a journey across the high seas, up to the moon, through dense, dark forests and back again. When the show closed with ‘Guardian’, we all had a little splash of Lindsey’s magic dancing across our souls. She really is something special.
Are you a true Stirlingite? Grab yourself some Lindsey merch below!