Twenty-five years later, and our friends in coloured skivvies are still pointing their fingers and doing the twist with the same enthusiasm they always have.
On 9 September, the original Wiggles – Greg, Anthony, Murray and Jeff, as well as Captain Feathersword – brought their timeless songs to The Croxton in Melbourne for a one-night-only 18+ reunion show.
Prior to the show commencing, the line of teens and young adults dressed in Wiggles memorabilia wrapped around the block of the Thornbury venue, excitedly singing their favourite Wiggles tunes and getting in some pre-drinks. Once inside, the excitement and anticipation for the night ahead was palpable, and most 20-something-year-olds there, myself included, were rushing to get a good position in the mosh pit.
The show was opened by the pipes and drums band of ex-servicemen and veterans, including blue Wiggle Anthony, who served in the army in the ’80s. This was a fitting opening, as ticket sales from the night were raising funds for an important organisation, Soldier On, who care for the physical and mental health of Australia’s war veterans and their families.
The crowd chanted, and despite the venue being excessively warm, the audience was jumping up and down once those curtains opened. The original yellow, blue, red and purple skivvies, along with everyone’s favourite pirate, made their way on stage, and without wasting time, the Wiggles started with their classic, ‘Fruit Salad’.
While the group had aged, their voices, choreography and energy was just the same as 25 years ago.
Back-up singers for the night were the new-generation Wiggles including Emma and Lachie, who also performed a partner dance to ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’. Everyone had illuminated their iPhone torches for the song, confusing Anthony who thought they were lighters but who thought it was an incredible touch from the audience.
One by one we were reintroduced to some of our childhood friends, Dorothy, Wags and Henry, each performing one of their signature songs. Murray, being the king of rock that he is, performed a guitar solo which had the entire audience head banging and fist pumping along to the 56-year-old.
Not surprisingly, Jeff fell asleep throughout the show, and the entire adult crowd had the job of waking him up, just like the good old days.
An audience member had constructed a big red car out of balloons, which the Wiggles used as a prop during their hit song, ‘Big Red Car’. Jeff’s masterpiece song, ‘I’m a Cow’, was also a hugely popular among the crowd, making everyone moo like cattle, while Jeff was dressed in a cow suit.
‘Hot Potatoes’, ‘Baby Beluga’, ‘Rock-a-By Your Bear’ were just some of the extensive classics performed, which highlighted the power of nostalgia.
This show was ultimately a kids show, performed for adults. There was nothing distasteful, and no swearing. This concert provided teens and young adults a nonjudgmental space to relive their childhood with likeminded people. I was energetically dancing along with the enduring choreography, digging like Wags the Dog and acting out cold spaghetti, without having to worry if anyone was looking or judging; we were all just being kids again.
The Wiggles are not only an iconic Australian group, but for many of us, they are entrenched in our childhood. Growing up with the Wiggles cassettes and VHS tapes, I find myself with a deep adoration for the group and a strong sentimental connection with them and their songs. Perhaps this is why their Melbourne concert sold out in minutes, and why hundreds of young adults were so excited to come together for this event.
For anyone who has the opportunity to see the original Wiggles come together, I highly recommend you do. This concert is certainly one of the best I have ever seen, and was so unique by nature. If you aren’t able to get tickets to one of their reunion gigs around the country, the Melbourne show was being recorded for iTunes.