“Hello New York. My name is Harry, I’m from England,” Harry Styles bashfully told the younger-skewing crowd at Radio City Music Hall on Thursday (Sept. 28). “My job for the next hour and a little bit is to entertain you. Please sing, dance and do whatever it is that will make you happy.” His faithful fans followed his instructions — no problem.
Earlier in the evening, Styles issued a reminder that “this is only the fifth show of my first tour.” It was hard to tell. Considering he cut his teeth with boy band sensation One Direction, the stage, spotlight and screaming fans are nothing new to the rockstar in the making. He appeared exceedingly comfortable, pacing from end to end while rallying for more cheers. From the moment his silhouette appeared on a pastel pink canvas with flower petals on it (he fittingly opened with “Ever Since New York”), through the encore, here are the seven best moments from Styles’ New York show.
Attendee’s Response to the Volume
Everyone in the audience over the legal drinking age crouched and covered their ears in perfect unison after each song in anticipation of the piercing screams that followed without fail.
Use of Props
During “Sweet Creature,” fans whipped out pastel pink butterfly cut-outs to wave in the air as they were illuminated by the flashlights on their phones. Later in the set, halfway through “Only Angel,” Styles grabbed a pride flag from front-row fans and skipped up and down the stage as it blew in the wake of his self-created wind.
“ I do apologize, I only have 10 songs,” Styles quipped before going into 1D favorite, “What Makes You Beautiful” off their debut album Up All Night. He later played a hyper-speed version of “Story of My Life,” off 1D’s 2013 album Midnight Memories and also tossed in a cover of Ariana Grande‘s “Just A Little Bit Of Your Heart,” which Styles wrote.
Styles invited the crowd to “embrace a stranger,” and allowed ample time for everyone to follow through. Such a gesture fed into his motto (that appears on his tour merchandise), “Treat people with kindnesss.” After several minutes had passed, Styles then instructed, “Take it with you, please do the same outside.”
The Desire For More
After a brisk one-hour set, Styles roared through his most uptempo track “Kiwi.” He had introduced the song by warning, “If you don’t sing with me on the next one, I’m not coming back.” Turns out, he meant what he said. He stopped his band after only a few seconds, demanding more energy. “I need you to be better,” he politely said to his fans. “Are you ready to try again?” The second time around they made it all the way through.
Styles’ four-song encore included a cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain” (which aligned with opening act Muna‘s own cover of Stevie Nicks‘ “Edge of Seventeen”). True to his surname, the pop-rocker made sure to end the song in style, as he spontaneously ran up the side paneling of the venue during the instrumental break at the end.
The Subtle Sass
“One more thing before I go, because I’ll regret it if I don’t,” Styles said after he had performed his breakout hit “Sign of the Times.” “New York is where Columbia Records is based, I like them very much and I’d like to thank them for being here tonight. But I suggested that Kiwi was the next single [rather than “Two Ghosts”]… and I’d like to suggest it a little more…” To close out the hour-and-a-half long set, Styles performed “Kiwi” for (technically) the third time that evening. Judging by the ear-numbing screams, he proved his point.