Page last updated at 10:53 GMT, Wednesday, 14 April 2010 11:53 UK

Mixed reaction to Whitney Houston's UK concert return


Mixed views on Whitney's UK comeback

Singer Whitney Houston's first UK concert for 11 years has prompted a varied reaction from fans and critics.

One fan told BBC Radio 5 live the star had occasionally been "awful", while another declared she was "brilliant".

The gig, in Birmingham, suffered a few hitches. A 15-minute costume change left fans restless, while a microphone had to be replaced at another point.

Houston, 46, tours the UK throughout April and May, including three nights at London's O2 arena.

'Really enjoyed it'

The 46-year-old had originally planned to kick off the UK leg of her tour in Manchester last Thursday, but was forced to pull out due to respiratory illness.

But the US star told the audience at Birmingham's LG Arena: "I'm feeling pretty good".

Colin Paterson
Colin Paterson, BBC Entertainment reporter
There were great moments - It's Not Right, But It's OK and How Will I Know were problem free.

But I Will Always Love You will live long in the memory, and not for the right reasons.

The problems started when, after 35 minutes, Whitney took a 'costume change break'. Fifteen minutes later, there was a cry of "Where's Whitney?" and several boos.

Throughout the show, her breathing was an issue. Two numbers in and Whitney was panting more than John Prescott running for the bus. She blamed it on a cold and the air conditioning.

Afterwards some fans told me they had got value for money - but not since I saw Bob Dylan in the late 90s have I been at a gig with so many angry punters.

Those going to see Whitney tonight in Nottingham will hope things are alright. If they are even ok, it will be an improvement on last night.

One audience member told the BBC: "She was good when she was good, but when she was not on form, she was awful."

Another concert-goer said: "There was a lot of talking and not enough singing. When you used to go to see Whitney Houston you expected a big show."

"I really enjoyed it no matter what anyone else says," a third fan added.

"Taking into account that she had a sore throat, she gave 100%. I thought she was brilliant and I'd pay again to see her."

BBC 5 live played a clip of Houston singing her signature hit I Will Always Love You at the concert, which showed that the star failed to capture its soaring top notes.

The Sun newspaper concluded that "it was not the performance that fans had been hoping for".

It added that her voice was now deeper and huskier and that she "ended up rambling" between songs, while her lengthy costume change prompted boos from the audience.

Writing in The Independent , Elisa Bray said Houston still demonstrated impressive vocal abilities, but added she was "tired" by the time she got to I Will Always Love You.

"It was definitely a spectacle - and for the most part in a good way," she concluded.

Print Sponsor

Houston postpones European opener
06 Apr 10 |  Entertainment
Whitney Houston gig 'dreadful'
23 Feb 10 |  Entertainment
Whitney reveals addiction battle
16 Sep 09 |  Entertainment


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

The Independent Whitney Houston, LG Arena, Birmingham - 10 hrs ago
Sky News Mixed Reviews For Whitney's Return - 20 hrs ago
Billboard Whitney Houston Kicks Off Delayed U.K. Tour - 21 hrs ago
Washington PostWhitney Houston returns to stage, critics divided - 22 hrs ago
Times Online Whitney Houston returns to UK - 23 hrs ago
* May require registration

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2020 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific