Adele covers the September 2022 issue of ELLE, on U.S. newsstands August 30th and rolling out globally beginning this week. The British singer-songwriter has been on a steady, galactic trajectory since the 2008 release of her celebrated debut album, 19. She has won 15 Grammys with her devastating vocal power and narrative command, achieved such celebrity that her name has become shorthand for heartbreak itself, and last November, after a six-year hiatus, released her fourth studio album, 30, which became the best-selling album of the year in the U.S.
After a career low point cancelling her Las Vegas residency, Adele speaks with ELLE about the artistic and personal rebirth that has her as happy as she’s ever been. Adele also opens up about her relationship with sports agent Rich Paul and her upcoming reimagined Vegas residency: “I’ve never been in love like this. I’m obsessed with him. I definitely want more kids. I’m a homemaker and I’m a matriarch, and a stable life helps me with my music. But right now, all I got in my brain is Vegas,” she adds. “I wanna f**king nail it.”
On her professional low point canceling her Las Vegas residency at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace: “It was the worst moment in my career, by far,” she says, within 10 minutes of us sitting down. She hasn’t spoken publicly about the debacle in the five months since, even as rumors about production issues and set disagreements swirled, and she’s eager to address it right away. “By far. I was so excited about those shows. It was devastating.”
On how she was terrified of letting everyone down by canceling her Las Vegas residency, but she also knew in her bones that something about the show did not feel authentic to her: “There was just no soul in it. The stage setup wasn’t right. It was very disconnected from me and my band, and it lacked intimacy. And maybe I tried too hard to give it those things in such a controlled environment.”
On being ‘embarrassed’ after canceling her Las Vegas residency but why it made her confidence grow: “The first couple of months was really, really hard. I was embarrassed. But it actually made my confidence in myself grow, because it was a very brave thing to do. And I don’t think many people would have done what I did. I’m very proud of myself for standing by my artistic needs.”
On what to expect for her reimagined Las Vegas residency: “I want to tell the story of the beginning of my career to now. I’m not gonna give too much about it, but the show grows. The show grows. It’s all about the music, and it’s really, really nostalgic. It’s gonna be really beautiful… I haven’t got any bullet points, obviously, when I talk. That’s why my shows are so erratic. One time I gave, like, an hour speech about an aquarium!”
On how she feels it’s the appropriate time in her career for a Las Vegas residency: “I think I’m right to do it right now,” she says. “I know I’m not, like, 60 years old and I haven’t got 20 albums under my belt. But I think my music will work in a show in Vegas.” She’s also excited to finally share in the communal enjoyment of her new music. “I haven’t really witnessed  out in the world yet,” Adele says. “It’s gonna be so emotional. I don’t know what I’m gonna do with meself.”
On how writing and releasing 30 was a salve for her; and how now, nearly a year after its release, she can finally see how her fourth album resonates with the world, and fits into the story of her career: “I like seeing myself in these four different moments of my life,” Adele says. “It’s been really emotional putting the set list and the visuals together, because so much has happened. Fifteen years is a long time. But one thing I feel so lucky with how big my life is now, is that I really lived a normal life. You know?”
[Photo Credit: Mario Sorrenti/ELLE Magazine – Video Credit: ELLE/YouTube]
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