Rihanna rocks Manila


She emerged on the stage, donned in plain white basketball jersey, and never mind if she was a little over two hours late, she was Rihanna. As the lights dimmed at the Mall of Asia Arena at 10:15 p.m., the fans, mostly clad in grunge but glitzy outfits, started to scream. Video by INQUIRER.nets Noy Morcoso lll

MANILA, Philippines – She emerged on the stage, donned in plain white basketball jersey, and never mind if she was a little over two hours late, she was Rihanna.

As the lights dimmed at the Mall of Asia Arena at 10:15 p.m., the fans, mostly clad in grunge but glitzy outfits, started to scream and then:

“Manila, how ya’ll feeling tonight? Now this is my second time here. But of course that was a really long time ago but I did not forget. I could not wait to come back. Ya’ll ready to get crazy with me tonight?” were Rihanna’s first words as she finally appeared on the stage with Egyptian and Aztec-themed digital background and to even louder and wilder screams from the audience.

The last time the Barbados-born singer was in Manila was in 2008 with then lover and fellow R&B singer Chris Brown.

Rihanna began Thursday’s concert by singing her recently released hits and ending her first set with “You Da One’, an electropop-Reggae from 2011.

Following the guitar solo provided by Portuguese guitarist Nuno Bettencourt of the 80s rock band “Extreme”, Rihanna got her audience all hyped again with “Man Down” and another upbeat hit “Rude Boy”.

“Ya’ll having a good time? I’m having so much fun with you, Manila!” Rihanna said as she did a medley of her all-time hits – “What’s my name,” “Umbrella,” “All of the Lights,”“Rockstar 101”.

Then the mood turned somber as Rihanna asked:  “Have you ever been in love? Because this next song is all about that complicated sh*t.”

Romance filled the air as Rihanna sang “What Now” from her latest album “Unapologetic”, “Take a Bow,” “Hate that I Love You,” and “Photographs.”

The concert would not be complete without Rihanna singing her multi-awarded single “We Found Love”, followed by “S&M”, “Only Girl (In The World)” and “Don’t Stop The Music.”

Rihanna’s final song “Where Have You Been” was followed by an encore, her 2013 hit “Stay” as the crowd refused to let the singer go, repeatedly chanting her name.

“Manila, thank you guys so much. It was a fun night. Thank you, Manila. I can’t wait to get back here. You guys were awesome. Make some noise for yourself right now. None of this would be possible if you guys didn’t buy tickets and show up and come to rock out with RiRi,” she told her Filipino fans.

GTA, a house and electronic music duo, kept the crowd entertained with a mash-up from 90s rock classics (“Smells Like Teen Spirit” of Nirvana) and modern hiphop (“Day ‘N’ Nite” by Kid Cudi). They performed from 8:30 p.m. until past 9 p.m. as the audience patiently waited for the star of the evening.

Rihanna’s concert in Manila is part of her Diamond World Tour that will also take her to Macau and Singapore.

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • akramgolteb

    As expected at least 2 hrs late. There have been very bad reviews about her on this very unprofessional attitude of hers. Coming out in that plain white training attire is a sign of something. Tagay tayo dyan mare.

  • balikpinoy

    Lots of empty seats in the VIP and Lower Box area.

  • speedstream2

    Uh, okay, come back soon, but please be on time. Just in case you’re not aware, we’re trying to improve our performance in punctuality. You see, our time is as precious as your time or anybody’s time for that matter.

  • User Guest

    bieber was late and he was booed … rihanna is late and the inquirer loses all dignity and patriotism to a known junkie? lol what garbage this writer is peddling!

    • Diepor

      What has junkie to do with anything? She is a good artist,

  • Rolly Javier

    Rihanna must be declared persona non-grata for being unprofessional in costume (nakapambarkada lang), performance…(nag lyp sing?) and for being late. In totality ninakawan lang ang mga fans niya dito sa pinas. Next time mga kababayan maging mabusisi na tayo.

    • Diepor

      What a strange comment. Unprofessional in custume? Persona non grata?. Ha Ha hA , you must be joking.

  • NoWorryBHappy


    Celebrities married to junkies or impulsive wife beaters never fail to show the signs of tragedies waiting to happen. Whitney Houston once admitted, “Yeah, man, I’m what you call a functioning junkie.”.

  • Diepor

    She is a gifted artist, and sexy as hell.

  • erica

    Kawawa naman ang mga pinoy, di nila alam na halos refule lang sa Manila ang ginawa ni Rihanna dahil naka vacation talaga ito sa Thailand. Refuel lang kumita na nag milyones dahl sa kababawan ng Pinoy fans. And take note, walang kaayos ayos at parang nag jogging lang, super mega late sa show nya, very unprofessional pero payag pa rin ang mga kawawang pinoy fans. Wake up people, a for some rebate sa binayad nyo sa tiket, Rihanna is laughing at you.

  • txtman SUPOTiful Bading



To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos