by Sarah Occhino

Nicki Minaj, pop’s glamorous rap princess blew the roof off of Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena on December 5th alongside support acts Tyga and Melbourne’s own DJ bombshell, Ruby Rose.

Ruby Rose was the first to take the stage but unfortunately her entrance was very anticlimactic. Her communication with the audience was a little awkward and the arena was quite empty. It was fair to say that she got off to a pretty slow start. But eventually, more and more people filled the arena and the crowd’s energy level got higher and higher and so did Rose’s.

Her set included a vast range of songs both old and new including “Thrift Shop”, “212” and older tunes like “Jump Around”. Ruby’s clothing choice was perfect; she’s such a beautiful girl. Of course, being back in her hometown, she was going to give a huge shout out too Melbourne and talk about how happy she was to be back. She also gave a big shout out to Tyga and Nicki Minaj and unfortunately, made an exit that was just as rushed as her entrance, but never the less, the crowd were pretty excited for the rest of the night.

Tyga’s set began with a DJ spinning a little and warming up the crowd before he made an absolutely explosive entrance. From the moment he walked out on stage he commanded the attention of everyone in the room and the crowd were beside themselves. Tyga resembled an energizer bunny whose batteries just didn’t seem to die.

Tyga’s fandom was quite overwhelming, the majority of people in the arena seemed to know all of his songs and they all received big responses. The biggest of which was definitely for his hit “Rack City” which he performed both in the middle of his set and at the end where he was joined on stage by a group of lucky female audience members who were dancing alongside him.

A younger, mostly female crowd began to build excitement while they were waiting for the girl of the night to come out on stage. Finally the lights went down and a clip of a pink rocket ship began to play which ended with a countdown to start off Minaj’s set. It was a little tacky but the crowd were definitely not complaining. The audience lost it when the curtain came down and a rocket ship was onstage, which slowly began to turn and there she was sitting inside it as she performed her opening number “Come On A Cone”.

It became apparent very quickly that Minaj is certainly a talented performer who is really a pleasure too watch. It was quite surprising how humble and charming she was. She seemed really overwhelmed by the crowd’s response and she did a great job communicating with them throughout the night. Some of her songs became really personal between her and the crowd, which got them even more excited. Minaj performed “I’m So Proud Of You” which is Drake’s song that she just features on but she managed to perform it so well alone. As if that didn’t get the crowd going enough, she then performed “Moment 4 Life” which the crowd echoed every word of.

Through out the entire show the audience was always on their feet no matter where their ticket had allocated them. The only time people seemed to sit down was during Minaj’s costume changes which there were maybe 6 or 7 of and during which time, a DJ who went by the name of DJ Headache spun for the crowd and did a fantastic job filing the time. He was also a very engaging performer and in that regard, mention also needs to be made of Minaj’s back up dancers who were so constantly energetic and entertaining.

Surprisingly, she did her smash hit “Super Bass” in the middle of her set when many would certainly think she’d keep until closer to the end. None the less, the crowd still went spastic. Later in the set she was joined by two back up singers, who sang with her during “Save Me” and “Marilyn Monroe”. These two women were absolutely spectacular singers. Their voices were astonishing.

Getting closer to the end of the set the crowd only became more excited as Nicki continued to blow them away with more of her biggest hits including David Guetta’s single which she featured on, “Turn Me On”. Minaj gave a big thanks to the audience for being with her before she blew everyone away with “Starships” and then left the stage without doing an encore.

Nicki Minaj is undoubtedly a fantastic performer who put on a great show for her fans. Nothing seems to faze her and as a person she seemed charming. To all those who criticise her, all that can be said is, haterz gonna hate.

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