By Anna O'Donoghue
59 shows, four continents and bucket loads of girl power, Little Mix brought their 2016 Tour to an emotional close last night in Cork.
With sparkly banners, handmade t-shirts, face paints and reluctant dads in tow, fans packed the Live at the Marquee venue with one intention, to get weird.
Eagerly awaiting the girls arrival on stage, excitable tweens danced hand-in-hand to a string of hits, all carrying the message of the night - girl power.
But is wasn’t long before Jade, Perrie, Leigh-Anne and Jesy exploded onto the stage to a chorus of ear-piercing screams.
It was high energy from the get go, sequined costumes - check, wind machines - check, on point dance routines - check, impressive use of digital effects - check, ridiculously good-looking male dancers, check.
The crowd were immediately drawn in and captivated by their energy as they belted out hit after hit - the epitome of ‘giving it socks’ or in this case, knee-high socks.
“Are you ready to get weird, Cork? Do you know how to get weird, Cork?” (or ‘Coke’ as their strong UK accents suggested),
“Getting weird to us is about being yourself, not caring what other people think - so dance like nobody's watching and sing like nobody's listening,”
"Just be weird".
20 years after the creation of the Spice Girls, Little Mix single handedly revamped the message of girl power and sent to straight to the snapchat generation of today before paying homage to Queen B with 'Run the World (girls)'.
Distracted by the high intensity of the show, I forgot that the girls can actually really sing. It wasn’t until they belted out ‘I’m Yours’ to a sea of smartphone torches and their acapella version of 'The End', that I noticed their strong harmonies and powerful belter notes.
I’m not sure if it was the realisation of it being the final night of their tour or the sheer love from the crowd but emotions were high from the girls - so much so Leigh-Ann broke down at the end of slow set and left the stage to gather herself.
Watch the moment here from 4:12.
That didn’t stop the girls though, their final song ‘Black Magic’ carried the same amount of energy as the opening number before their dancers crashed onto the stage for a final, well-deserved, emotionally -fueled group hug.
Whatever your age, whatever your music preference, whatever your gender, I’m pretty sure you couldn’t have left the Leeside venue without feeling like you could rule the world.