Birdy’s staging creates an intimate and mellow atmospherea.canvas.of.light/Flickr

The lyric from ‘Young Heart’: “Lost in the night but it’s only a moment”, encapsulated the ephemeral magic of Birdy’s Eventim Apollo performance. Held to celebrate her fourth studio album (also Young Heart), the concert left me bewitched, as I found myself absorbed by her vocals and piano melodies. Birdy is an artist who has accompanied my passage from childhood to adulthood so it was mesmerising to see her perform in a venue befitting her gentle and ethereal music.

“Her high notes felt charged with heartbreak and tenderness”

On each seat was an envelope displaying the words: “Love from Birdy”. Inside was a card which made it possible to pre-order her next album before anyone else. Poetically, this card could also be planted into a flower. The staging created an intimate and mellow atmosphere, with the piano draped in white material, and the lighting alternating between gold, turquoise and radiant purple beams.

Birdy delivered her performance with an extraordinary, at times angelic, stage presence. Demure and delicate in her delivery, she drew attention to her touching lyricism and sublime voice. In moments with minimal instrumentals, her extraordinary vocal range transfixed the audience. Her high notes felt charged with heartbreak and tenderness while deeper moments conveyed a sense of fervour.

Birdy’s breakout cover of Bon Iver’s ‘Skinny Love’Birdy / YouTube

At the piano, Birdy played one of her most iconic songs: her breakout cover of Bon Iver’s ‘Skinny Love’. Stripped-back and raw, the live version highlighted every breath, break, and rhythmic change. There was a maturity to her performance, evoking the sense that formative experiences and personal history have shaped her as an artist. Offering her own take on another classic, the concert included a cover of ‘Running Up That Hill’. Her distinct instrumentals and strong use of piano ensured that it felt thoroughly like her own interpretation, bringing out a more vulnerable and desperate side to Kate Bush’s lyrics.

For most of the show, the audience remained seated, transfixed by Birdy’s vocals and musicianship. However, tracks like ‘Keeping Your Head Up’ had the audience singing and dancing along. The emotive quality of Birdy’s music didn’t get lost in these moments of excitement, as I found myself moved by the pacifying lyrics, which have so often brought me calm and relief.

“The emotive quality of Birdy’s music didn’t get lost in these moments of excitement”

The vivacity of Birdy’s performance was carried through to her final song: ‘Wings’. Less graceful and elegant in her performance, she ferociously belted the lyrics. The rush of concert euphoria was ecstatic, as if the whole auditorium was being lifted by Birdy’s own ‘Wings’.

With another album on the way, Birdy teased four new songs. The track ‘Heartbreaker’ was introduced by the perplexing opening that she once “fell in love with a werewolf”. Less instrumentally intimate than her other songs, this track had a slightly 80s feeling, although its lyrics were consistent with her previous material. Likewise, a new electric and upbeat side of Birdy’s sound was showcased in the tracks ‘Raincatchers’ and ‘Automatic’.


Mountain View

The 1975 at the Brighton Centre

Enthralling aesthetic choices, outstanding vocals and poetic lyricism would certainly draw me back to another Birdy concert. The delicate piano and soft vocals of her older work, which fans have come to adore, were combined with attempts to branch out into slightly different genres, making for a uniquely gentle and powerful performance.