Elton Launches Perth Arena

“As you can see, I’m not George Michael,” Elton John quipped on stage during a concert to launch the $550 million ($574 million), 15,000-capacity Perth Arena.

The Nov. 10 original opener, George Michael canceled his Australian tour in September citing “anxiety” issues. 

The Arena’s opening had its own anxiety issues, with heavy rain keeping the retractable roof closed during the under-the-stars-billed show, and some customers complaining they had to wait in line for an hour to collect tickets.
But John’s animated, two-hour set of hits, which led to a number of standing ovations from the 11,000-strong crowd, proved an impressive unveiling. 
John also played the venue Nov. 12 to a crowd of 12,000. 
Steve Hevern, GM of the AEG Ogden-operated venue, said, “As is the case with any opening nights, there were the usual last minute surprises and challenges but nothing we couldn’t meet. To quote the adage, the show must and did go on.  I was delighted with how the night played out.” 
The Arena’s first run of events included shows by Matchbox Twenty and INXSNickelbackThe WigglesRussell BrandJennifer Lopez and Nicki Minaj as well as the sold-out opening-season home game by the Perth Wildcats basketball team and Mike Tyson’s Day of the Champions.