I am actually really glad I have the day off work today because I would have been a mess behind my desk, still trembling with joy from watching the Spice Girls perform at the London 2012 Olympics Closing Ceremony.
Years from now we will be telling our children’s children about where we were the minute the legendary five showed up on stage in individually customised London black cabs and turned the par-tee.
Everyone’s favourite British girl band reuniting to perform at the Olympics Closing Ceremony was probably the worst kept secret ever, and by the time we got to the rehearsals stage, paparazzi snaps of all five on site pointing and fist-pumping pretty much sealed the deal.
The Spice Girls rocked up looking like proper pop music royalty, each of them in flawless form, bearing some modernised interpretation of their Spice branding: Victoria in a fitting little black dress with a metre-long train, Geri reviving Cool Britannica in a regal red short dress with gold chains and the Union Jack flag fashionable scrunched at her derry, framing her in a sexy ball grown silhouette, Emma in a girly pink number with exaggerated shoulders pads, Melanie C softening her sportiness with an ethereal all-white pants suit, and Mel B upgrading from animal prints to a heart-arresting, sequined nude catsuit.
Our fabulous five blasted on stage with their debut single ‘Wannabe’ – which tore up the pop charts 16 years ago – and it’s apparent from the minute they stepped out of their black cabs that the same feisty girl power energy is still alive and well in all of them – some might argue that Victoria is, perhaps, better at containing it.
Just like a few other performers, the Spice Girls sang completely live with the aid of a backing vocal track, which was particularly obvious during the chorus in both ‘Wannabe’ and ‘Spice Up Your Life’.
It was evidently not the vocal performance of the night, but then again, since when did these anthemic hits called for extreme vocal prowess? These songs, just like so many of the Spice Girls‘ hits, were about conveying a feeling and infectious energy. So, did Ginger, Sporty, Scary, Baby and Posh successfully recapture the mood and euphoria we first felt listening to both records? Yes – and then some.
That’s easily the single best reason why this reunion performance is a winner.
The minute each of them mounted a black cab and went on a race around the stadium – fuck, bitch – it was all over. The immensity of witnessing Victoria‘s eleganza, with her train and long brown mane flying in the air, was enough to slay a queen.
Even though the performance saw each of them arriving in their own taxi, bearing their own look, and often taking their own part of the stage – it still feels like a unit. The Spice Girls, to me, has always been a collection of five distinctly branded females that when combined brought this irrepressibly camp and feisty energy.
I think it’s brilliant that just for a few minutes on stage, these five women – who have all moved on with their own lives, family and solo projects – can come back and play a popstar character that brought millions of people all around the world so much joy. And on top of that, do it so damn well.
Long live the Spice Girls.
Links will inevitably be taken down. So watch the girls take over the Olympic Closing Ceremony while you can, wherever you can.