Gleeking Out: Glee Live stops off at Chicago

Pressed up against a shaky, seven-foot fence, surrounded by packs of screaming 12 year olds and their moms, desperately trying to find a camera and pen, I began to question my sanity. Then, they appeared.

Across the smoldering asphalt of the Allstate Arena parking lot on Friday, June 3, Lea Michele, Amber Riley, and Harry Shum Jr. appeared in the distance. Followed by fellow cast members such as Chord Overstreet, Jenna Ushkowitz, and fan favorite Chris Colfer, the cast made their way along concrete road blocks and chain-linked fences to sign the tickets, t-shirts, and various memorabilia (even a Michael Jackson hand glove) thrust forth by adoring fans.

I was among that crowd. And I have no shame.

Chicago was the 9th stop on a 21-stop tour, spanning the continental U.S., England, and Ireland this summer. The tour includes all the Gleeks’ favorite students from The New Directions, along with appearances by Blaine Anderson (Darren Criss) and the Warblers.

Kicking off the night with the ever classic, “Don’t Stop Believing,” the crowd was hooked from the start. Solo performances followed with “Firework” by Lea Michele, “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by Chris Colfer, and “Safety Dance” by Kevin McHale, who rose from Artie’s wheelchair for his own dance spotlight.

Heather Morris, who plays Britney on the Glee series, best known for her comedic one-liners and outstanding dance skills, followed with “Slave for You.” Her perfect impersonation even had the crowd questioning whether the real Britney Spears had made a surprise guest appearance or not.

Duets such as “Lucky” by Chord Overstreet and Dianna Agron, “River Deep Mountain High” by Amber Riley and Naya Rivera, and group numbers such as “Loser Like Me” and “Born This Way” followed. The Warblers owned the spotlight on the island stage for us fans in the back with hits like “Teenage Dream,” “Raise Your Glass,” and “Silly Love Songs.”

To top off the night, the handsome boys of Glee gave the audience their own rendition of the Rebecca Black hit, “Friday.” The energy in Rosemont remained at an exhausting high throughout the show, not settling for a second. Cast members tweeted pictures from the stage throughout the show and tweeted to fans as they departed for the night.

“Great show tonight in Chicago,” tweeted Lea Michele post show. “The audience was amazing and we got to meet our awesome fans after!”