Michael Flatley is leaving the stage the same way he entered – to applause and standing ovations.
The 55-year-old is wowing London all over again thanks to the debut of his new show Lord of the Dance – Dangerous Games, which bowed last Thursday at the London Palladium. Flatley’s still got it, big time, according to his fans, even though his time on stage comes mostly at the finale.
The Irish American super-hoofer will perform with the show he created until the end of the month; his next return to the stage will come at the 02 in Dublin, where Flatley debuted his Lord of the Dance in 2006 when the venue was called the Point Depot.
"Dance has been very good to me which is what makes it so hard to say goodbye to it all. Some dancers don't get to perform beyond their thirties which is what makes me feel so blessed," Flatley told Dublin’s Evening Herald.
"But, please God, it will be a dream come true for me to have three generations of Flatley in the O2 for my final Irish performance."
Michael’s mom and dad, living in Chicago, will be in Dublin on March 27 for his last Irish show, and so will little Michael Junior, seven years old now.
"If you're going to say goodbye to the dance stage, what a way to say goodbye," he added.
As is always the case with Michael’s shows, critics either love them or hate them. “The Flatley production values are low-grade. His show isn’t even particularly Irish these days; just a globalized, sugary pulp,” wrote the critic from the Daily Mail, but his counterpart at the more upmarket Daily Telegraph couldn’t have disagreed more.
“When [Flatley] emerges towards the end of the performance – the entire evening being a kind of foreplay before he does so – with one click of the heels he turns a nice, normal, docile audience into a crowd of raving lunatics. That is some gift,” reckoned Laura Thompson.