His first of nine shows in Edmonton is earning rave reviews after Garth Brooks’ debut show at Rogers Place Friday night.
The 55-year-old country music superstar performed for — with, really — a sold-out crowd who sang along and danced in the aisles as Brooks did his thing.
His wife Trisha Yearwood also took the stage for a few songs of her own and performed alongside her partner.
Fans said the energy in the arena was unreal and the audience was incredibly loud and engaged.
Local country music artist Brett Kissel was Friday’s opening act.
More than 143,000 tickets have been sold for Brooks’ shows in Edmonton.
“These are the kinds of people you’re raised around,” Brooks said about Edmontonians. “I know we’re 1,000 miles apart but this is Oklahoma for me. Just hard-working people, common sense people, and they love their music. Why they have done this for us, I have no idea. I’m just very thankful they have.
“The hope is when they walk out of here, they look at that ticket and go: ‘You know what? If this guy comes back, I’ll be back.’ That’s the hope.”
The last time Brooks performed in Edmonton was 21 years ago. His previous shows at Northlands Coliseum between Aug. 10 and 12, 1996 saw 50,871 tickets sold.
Brooks said he isn’t ruling out another visit to Edmonton in the future, but added it’s really up to his wife.
“My retiring days are behind me,” he said. “They’re going to have to throw me out now.”
“I would run like this the rest of my life if people showed up. I love this.”