NDA Student Gives One Direction Concert Thumbs Up


Lilly Brada, Staff Writer

One Direction is in their fifth year of singing, recently performing their “On The Road Again” tour in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

“It’s so nice to be around people who understand what a good football team is,” singer Harry Styles said to a crowd of screaming fans as he paraded around the stage donning a cheese head and Packer flag. Band mate Niall Horan called Wisconsin the “home of cheese and beer.”


I was there to experience their On The Road Again tour, and their performance was not only new to me, but filled me with a mix of thoughts and emotions.


I waited near the back row of the first floor in my seat. Icona Pop, a team of two Swedish singers, had opened and left the stage at eight. When the clock struck nine, the lights dimmed and Miller Park burst with screams.


An animated intro played on the screens, adding a layer of anticipation over the crowd. With a burst of light and fireworks, the members of One Direction (Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Niall Horan, and Harry Styles) made their way to the stage. Before there was time to react, Niall was already playing his guitar and the band opened with “Clouds” from their latest album, Four.


Everyone cheered as they shouted, “Milwaukee,” for the first of what was multiple times over the duration of the concert.


I am a fan, and being familiar with all the songs they were performed, including “Clouds,” it’s safe to say the boys’ live vocals were extremely similar to the recordings. Four was released before singer Zayn Malik left the band, leaving the rest of the group to take over his roles during the performance. Though I have to admit Niall is my favorite, I have a new appreciation for Liam Payne. Liam was not only chosen to sing Zayn’s trademark high notes, but he hit them well, especially for having one of the lowest voices in the band.


Between every few songs, the boys of 1D would entertain the crowd. Besides shouting “Milwaukee!”several times during the concert, the crowd favorite speech by far was done by Green Bay Packer fan Harry Styles. Not only did he wear Green Bay gear while leading the Packer chant and having the fans cheer for Aaron Rodgers and cheese, but he acknowledged individual fans as well. Styles even called out a man with a “death wish”  who was carrying a sign that said, “I come from Chicago. Bear Town.” Harry responded, “We hunt bears here. We’re taking you down!”


You would think that by touring the world, the boys of 1D would have seen it all. However, as a surprise to the boys, OTRA (On the Road Again) Milwaukee had a unique fan project. The project was spread through Twitter, fans trying their hardest to get the project in the hands of all concert attendants. During the song “Night Changes,” the crowd was illuminated by green and yellow glowsticks. While “You and I” played in the boys’ encore, fans held up printed signs that read, “We’ll Never Give Up These Memories.” The “W” in “we’ll” was represented by the Wisconsin Badger logo, the “G” in “give” being the Packer logo, “UP” being outlined by the shape of Wisconsin to represent the “Upper Peninsula,” and the “M” in “memories” as the Milwaukee Brewers’ logo.


“Those signs are beautiful,” Niall remarked after wrapping up “You and I.” Liam even rested his microphone to capture the moment and take a selfie with the crowd and signs.


Wisconsin was praised many times by all band members, not only referencing “the best team… the Green Bay Packers,” but also the excitement of the “loudest crowd” and, in general, claiming they “love this state.”


One Direction claims that after the release of their album, finished but unnamed, they’ll be “taking a break.” Fans around the world are posting their fears and woes on social media, pleading to the boys to stay together.


It’s uncertain what they’ll do after the hiatus in 2016. Another popular boyband, the Jonas Brothers, took a “break” in 2013; they, however, split for good. Many worry this will be the fate of 1D as well.


The members of One Direction have been touring together since their start on the X-Factor in 2010 and have stayed a team since until bandmate Zayn Malik quit in the spring of 2015. Since the absence of Zayn, fans and the media alike have been questioning the lifetime of the band. For now, all we have is the word of the boys.


“Directioners,” myself included, can only hope that One Direction speaks the truth. “Lots of rumors going round. We are not splitting up, but we will be taking a well-earned break at some point next year,” Niall tweeted. “Don’t worry though, we still have lots we want to achieve.”