Melanie Martinez 04.15.16


F41A5564 - 041516 Melanie Martinez - sMelanie Martinez brought her Cry Baby Tour to the Marquee Theatre on April 15 for a rescheduled show.  Originally slated to appear in February, Ms. Martinez’s original date had to be cancelled due to illness.  So instead, Ms. Martinez closed her U.S. tour at the Marquee.

The crowd was mostly teen and pre-teen girls.  If you’re of the right age, many of the concert-goers may have reminded you a bit of the stars of the 80’s TV show Square Pegs – a little quirky, a little different and united by their collective individuality.

I understand why Ms. Martinez is so popular with this crowd, or at least I think I do – she comes across as one them and her lyrics clearly resonate with her young fans. Songs like Dollhouse and Mrs. Potato Head speak to the pressures to look and dress perfectly and the pain she experiences when she doesn’t quite measure up.  Or Alphabet Boy which speaks to the angst and anxiety of not doing as well in school as her peers or her parent’s expectations.  Or Dollhouse which speaks to the anxiety and sadness of a household that presents a perfect façade to the outside world but in reality is a mess on the inside.   I sense that her songs are equal parts entertainment and therapy to her young fans who may already be struggling with body image, parental expectations, split households and internal struggles.  And good for Ms. Martinez for speaking to these young fans in terms that they can internalize and appreciate.

Ms. Martinez’s fans clearly appreciate having an artist who speaks to the anguish they sometimes (often?) feel.  The audience had clearly listened to Cry Baby many times over because they seemed to know every lyric to every song.  The surge of the crowd from the back of the room towards the stage was tremendous as everyone seemed to want to get just a little bit closer to the one artist the feel truly understands them.  Ms. Martinez’s fans need her, and she is and will remain important to them, because she helps them recognize and realize that they aren’t alone in what they’re feeling or the growing pains that they’re experiencing.

At age 20, Ms. Martinez is clearly young enough to speak with authenticity to a crowd of teens and pre-teens.  It will be interesting to see how she and her music, and her fans, evolve as she continues to grow and mature as an artist, songwriter, and performer.

Review and photos by Greg Cohen


Photos © Greg Cohen 2016

The setlist was:

  • Cry Baby
  • Dollhouse
  • Sippy Cup
  • Carousel
  • Alphabet Boy
  • Soap
  • Training Wheels
  • Pity Party
  • Tag, You’re It
  • Milk and Cookies
  • Pacify Her
  • Mrs. Potato Head
  • Cake


  • Play Date
  • Teddy Bear
  • Mad Hatter


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