Miley Cyrus (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)
Miley Cyrus told members of the press (yours truly included) earlier today that she is totally stoked about her upcoming Bangerz Tour, which stops in Chicago on March 7 at the Allstate Arena. And those in attendance should be ready to take home “a lot of junk.”
“I make my albums to be able to travel and go on the road,” Cyrus said, replying to carefully vetted email questions during the half-hour conference call.
“That’s what I love to do more than anything. .. I haven’t gotten to go out with the album yet to see my fans singing along. … The best thing for an artist is to see people sing a long with your songs. To have people participate in your show. …. to put down your cell phone and sing a long and dance. We’re definitely keeping it fun.”
The 21-year-old kicks off her 38-city tour on Valentine’s Day in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The album, “Bangerz,” debuted at the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Top 200 Album chart, and hit the top spot on iTunes around the world in its first week of release. “Wrecking Ball” and “We Can’t Stop” were the first two singles released off the album.
“2013 was such a big year for me so I wanted this show to reflect that,” Cyrus said.
When asked about the “fan experience” the tour will create, Cyrus had this to say: “I’m like a little hoarder. It’s my mom’s worst nightmare. I hope my fans become a hoarder also. I’m giving a lot of junk away [during the concert]. .. I want to give them real things, like collectors’ pieces. I want my fans to get things they want to take home and collect. … This tour is very inspired by the fan art I get.”
Miley Cyrus performs in 2013 in Florida. (Photo by Alexander Tamargo/Getty Images for Clear Channel)
The look of the show, Cyrus said, also relies on the animation artistry of Nickelodeon’s “Ren & Stimpy” creator John Kricfalusi. Cyrus said his drawings will be featured prominently in the show, which features a 90-minute set from the singer, and an acoustic set which she said “can go for as long as she wants.” She said the acoustic set will feature stripped down versions of both her hits and covers.
The stage design, she said, was “something I had to fight for a little bit. … It’s not the easiest thing to travel with the [set] we’re using. In some of the cities my screen is too large. But each city is gonna be the best it can be with what their arena can allow… This technology is so new… It’s so dope, with 3-d images… the stage had to be designed specifically for this technology to work. Cyrus also admitted watching a lot of videos of Madonna’s tours because she’s a huge fan of the legendary singer and because “she had a really beautiful stage and everything played on the screens was so beautiful. I was really inspired by that.”
Cyrus also mentioned, but would not elaborate on, her concert entrance and exit, which have her totally stoked, and “crazy props” she hopes will surprise her fans. Her tour bus will be done up in “doll house” pink, since she and her best friend (traveling with the singer so she won’t be lonely) call each other “Doll.” “[So pink it will] make [people] puke.”
Questioned about her pre-show routines, Cyrus said: “Sometimes I’m more intense … I need to lock it down three hours before show to get my mind right and rest my voice. Sometimes I’m having fun with dancers, partying backstage. I always have to take time to warm up … a lot of this s–t is mental, to get yourself through it. It’s a long show, kind of like a workout. Every night you gotta build up the stamina. It’s intense being on the road.”
As for the cost of her concert tickets (the top price is $101.25 with fees via ticketmaster.com for her Chicago show), Cyrus is promising a lot of bang for the bucks.
“My thing has never been about me making money,” she said. …”I did [that] when I was a kid. I made the money I needed to make and now it’s about putting money into the tour and making sure my fans get the best show. …. I just want to make it worth going to see. Especially for the younger fans if parents are buying the tickets.”
And lest folks think Cyrus is a diva, her contract rider is pretty boring.
“I don’t have a thing on there,” she said. ” When I was younger I wanted ‘Guitar Hero’ and Frosted Flakes. Now I just want the ‘Guitar Hero.'”
Cyrus also declared herself a feminist: “People don’t like to believe I’m a feminist, but I am,” she said. … “I like to keep women working [in the entertainment industry]…. Sometimes people try to make me seem like I’m one thing, like all I do is shock people. … Girls see through that. There’s a feminist energy there. … My fans look at me and feel they can be truly how they are. Everything I do, it’s not to be different to prove a point. It’s because you ARE different. It’s owning that; not being what other people consider sexy or right or wrong.”