Shania Twain had a film crew out for her two-night stint at Toronto’s newly christened Scotiabank Arena (formerly Air Canada Centre) over the weekend (July 6-7). The Canadian country-pop superstar, who released her fifth studio album, Now, in 2017 after 15 years, kicked off her Shania Now tour in May and will wrap up Dec. 22.
The Toronto dates were the only shoot locations on a worldwide tour that is currently taking her all over North America, then to Brazil in August, the UK, and Europe in September and October, and Australia and New Zealand in December.
“We need you to be on your best performance,” Twain, 52, told the packed arena. “As I said, we’re filming, and if there’s anything technically that goes wrong with the show, I’m going to apologize in advance because we’ll want to do that over again if you don’t mind.”
Her request was met with loud cheers.
“But in saying that, basically, now that you’re a little warmed up, I want you to spend the rest of the night in your best audience performance mode and you sing along to everything that you know.”
Twain, who was chatty throughout the evening, then introduced the next song, “Poor Me,” as a “song you wouldn’t know as well because it’s on my new album. But I’m doing the song in the show, first of all it’s my favorite song off the new album, and it represents a time in my life when I was really down and feeling helpless and hopeless but I started sharing more of the downside of my real life, I guess, more to be real.
“I just felt that the time was right and also in hopes to inspire many of you out there who are going through a difficult time or a difficult breakup, and you know what, sometimes you just need to take that moment to feel sorry for yourself.”
In 2011, Twain married Frédéric Thiébaud, the ex-husband of the so-called friend who had an affair with her then-husband, producer Robert “Mutt” Lange, and wrote all about the betrayal, divorce, and recovering her self-esteem, on Now. She also battled Lyme disease and lost her voice to dysphonia.
She returned to road life in 2015 with the Rock This Country tour, supposed to be last but changed her mind.
The two-hour Shania Now concert was mostly upbeat, the crowd on their feet from the opening number, “Life’s About To Get Good,” with an impressive stage design, solid band and dancers, and requisite dazzling outfits.
Twain made her grand entrance from the back of the arena, walking through the aisle to the main stage. Later, she rose high above the crowd on a swing for “Soldier” to a second stage at the back, and stayed there for “You’re Still The One.” On the Friday night, she invited three “cowboys” to lead her back to the main stage and on Saturday she chatted and took selfies with some female fans — one of whom told Twain she had lipstick on her teeth (“only people that care about you tell you,” the singer remarked), leading her back to the main stage.
There, Twain invited another young lady onstage to tell a “cute story.” “Sometimes when I see signs in the audience, I get distracted, and I forget the words to my songs, so I try not to read them while I’m singing,” Twain laughed. “So tell everybody what your sign said. “When I was five years old, I used to tell everybody that Shania Twain was my mom,” the fan said.
“That is a huge compliment. So like I was saying up there, this is a really amazing reunion for me because I am seeing so many people your age in here and I know you had to be like six, eight, 10, or whatever, when those early songs came out, so it’s really great to see you all again.”
Further details about the use of the concert footage — DVD? TV special? — will be announced at a later date, a publicist for Universal Music Canada said in an email.
For the record, there were no do-overs needed. The film producers will have two shows from which to choose the best versions.
The setlist for night two:
Life’s About To Get Good
Come on Over
Don’t Be Stupid (You Know I Love You)
That Don’t Impress Me Much
Let’s Kiss and Make Up
Any Man of Mine
Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under?
Honey, I’m Home
You’re Still the One
From This Moment On
I’m Gonna Getcha Good!
Party for Two (with Bastian Baker)
Swingin’ With My Eyes Closed (with Bastian Baker)
(If You’re Not in It for Love) I’m Outta Here!
Man! I Feel Like a Woman