The YouTube Theatre roared with thunderous applause on Oct. 18th as Janelle Monáe took the stage one last time for the Age of Pleasure tour. In June, Monáe released her fourth studio album The Age of Pleasure -- a celebration of her queer identity and blissful life with sounds of Afrobeat and reggae.
Music rang through the venue as the curtains went down revealing a decorative and elaborate stage adorned with flowers, an homage to the tropical visuals of the album. Musicians and dancers filled the stage one by one vibing to the music. Monáe made her grand entrance last to the track "Float," wearing a flower outfit similar to the iconic flower outfit Florence Pugh wore from Midsommar. This is not the first time Monáe has worn the outfit, she wore a similar outfit when she hosted the Oscars in 2020. The setlist included a nice variety of all her projects and was split into 5 chapters: A Thousand Versions of the Self, Now or Never, (T)high Vibration, Paradise Found and Surfing on the Sun. The beginning focused on her newest project as she performed the bold and in-your-face track song "Champagne Shit and "Haute. Rapper Doechii made a surprise appearance for their duet "Phenomenal."
Monáe's a natural performer, she's very charming and cheeky. Similarly, her music is a reflection of her personality. It's fun and pushes the boundaries of self-love and sexuality in a unique way. The night was all about having a good time as Monáe invited fans up on stage to dance to the tune "Paid in Pleasure."
The show felt very theatrical, with interesting choreography and costume changes. One of the biggest highlights of the night was when she performed "Pynk." She and her backup dancers wore pink pants that, when opened, reveal layers of ruffles that mirror vaginas - a nod to the music video for the song. The unforgettable guitar riff of "Make Me Feel" vibrated through the venue as Monáe' delighted us with her funky dance moves and powerful high notes. All night Monáe energy was never ending, dancing and signing with every beat. A triumphant end to her tour.