Kim Petras Brings More Than Just A Show To The Armory


Going to a show every night is not normal. I’m aware of this. When I go out, my only expectation is to be treated to some great music and a slight show on top of that. When “normal people” go out, I feel like they expect more of a spectacle, a production. Even the word “production” doesn’t seem to describe what people got on Thursday night at The Armory in Minneapolis with Kim Petras.

Does the name Kim Petras sound familiar? I bet it does and I bet that’s due to her collaboration with the one and only Sam Smith on “Unholy”. That right there would be a signal that this show was not my normal cup of tea which is true but the story of Kim Petras is one that has me completely in love with this human. I won’t get into all of the meat and potatoes of the story but, long story short, Kim was approved for gender-confirmation surgery at 16 years old. This was back in 2008 which made her the youngest person at that time to have the surgery. Thinking about that, I just couldn’t imagine everything going on in her head and the backlash that she probably faced but she persevered and has turned into a megastar. Some people may try and say that she is only famous because of this story but, after seeing her for the third time on Thursday night, it was became even more clear that Kim is truly just an epically perfect pop-star regardless of her come-up.

As I mentioned the word “production” doesn’t even start to describe what Kim Petras treated the audience to on Thursday night. First, let’s talk about the stage set-up. It was gigantic. I know that the stage area at The Armory is already large but the addition of stairs and platforms across the stage really made it feel more like an arena show than anything else. I felt like it was a lot of production for just one woman but, as the show started, it quickly became clear that Kim was not going to be the only one on stage.

Kicking off the set with “Feed the Beast”, the title track off of one of her two albums that has come out this year, the room was transported into another time. Joined on stage by three absolutely amazing dancers, this first act of the show seemed to be set in ancient times or, at least, that’s the vibe I got. There was something very “Roman Dynasty” about the dancers’ outfits and the imagery flashing on the screen behind the performers, although dark and almost devilish, had this Roman Empire feel to it. This set-up stayed for five songs ending with a shortened version of the hit song “Unholy” that she had done with Sam Smith.

As Kim and the dancers disappeared from the stage, I had a second to gather my thoughts. I was just absolutely floored by what had just happened and found myself sorting through my thoughts just trying to find the right words to describe what had just happened. “Movie”. That’s the word. Although it was clearly a concert and Kim was truly singing her brains out, I felt like I had just watched an entire movie rather than just a concert. I was watching a story, set to music, come to life in front of me and it was something that I hadn’t seen done in a concert in a very long time. Hell, I don’t know that I’ve ever seen it before but I know that I was hooked and although I had planned on an early night so I could pack and get ready for Las Vegas, by the time this first “act” was done, I realized that there was no way I was missing a single moment of this production.

Following our trip to the Roman Empire was a trip to a more standard nine to five job– or so I thought. Kim and her dancers came out in typical black office wear (although I’m using the word “typical” loosely here) with the dancers carrying silver Deal or No Deal suitcases. I was intrigued as I had a feeling that this act wasn’t going to be quite what it appeared and, gosh darn it, I was right. After a song or two with very robotic dance moves while Kim’s voice rang out, everything change. The lights got a little darker and the bass a little heavier and then the entire mood shifted. Clothes were torn off and, eventually, the dancers got dirty, very dirty, and I will leave it at that.

The night progressed with many more acts that took the audience to different worlds full of different sounds and sights. The one thing that remained constant throughout the night was Kim’s talent that shined in the spotlight. Although there was a lot going on and a lot to see, I loved the way that Kim remained in control of the evening and stayed at the forefront of my thoughts and ears the entire time. I truly wish I could tell you everything I saw on Thursday night but that would take away the fun and surprise so, beyond the first two acts, you’re on your own.

I’ll be honest, there were songs that I felt were a bit too dirty for my personal taste. It’s not that I didn’t appreciate the artistry behind the dancing happening or just the catchiness of the tracks but there were just moments that made me feel almost a bit awkward. That being said, I loved the power that this brought to Kim’s set and the sense of empowerment that it brought to me. There was just something so outstanding about Kim standing there in gorgeous outfits and owning her own sexuality. I really can’t put the reasoning into words but it was just such a powerful moment and thought and was truly the cherry on top to Kim’s already extraordinary set.

Before I let you go, I want to give a huge shoutout to opening DJ Alex Chapman. They did a stellar job of getting the room ready for the extravagant evening. I loved the fact that they didn’t just stand behind the turntables and, instead, joined in with the party by dancing and singing along. It was such a perfect way to start a perfect evening.

If you’re looking for a high quality show, go to Kim Petras. Even if you’re like me and not quite sold on her pop-based music, go to Kim Petras. I never thought I would say this but I think the Kim Petras show on Thursday night may be in my top ten of the year.