MaSiWei 马思唯: 2023 World Tour, Palais Theatre, Melbourne, April 12th 2023 – Live Review

I was not prepared for the power of MaSiWei.

Accompanied by DJ Black McQueen and a giant screen that displayed a digital knight horse chess piece spinning behind him, MaSiWei (马思唯) took to the stage, welcomed by an eager and loud sold-out crowd at Melbourne’s Palais Theatre, touring Australia and New Zealand as part of his 2023 World Tour.

In his first visit to Australia, already playing in Brisbane, and selling out in Sydney, it was finally Melbourne’s turn. As soon as the Chinese rapper and ¼th of the famed Chinese hip-hop group Higher Brothers stepped onto the Melbourne stage, he was in command. Impressing with his fast rap vocals, charisma, and stage presence, the audience were quick to cheer and join in the fun with waving their hands in the air, singing along to certain lyrics, jumping up and down, and dancing.

MaSiWei thoroughly impressed with his finesse and talent, and his music is so damn good! While I am still sad that the songs I adore ‘Coco Elva Tia’ and ‘Eat Hot Pot (吃儿火锅)’ weren’t played (despite a fan continuously shouting throughout the night behind me that he also wanted MaSiWei to play ‘Coco Elva Tia’), MaSiWei still provided the best of his music with an irresistible rebellious energy.

Between dishing out his catchy tunes including ‘Prince Charming (黑马王子)’, ‘Flow Guilty’, ‘Crush On You’, ‘深藍色太平洋 (Deep Blue Pacific)’, ‘Humble Swag’, ‘VSOP’ and even rapping freestyle, what I loved most about MaSiWei was how he took time to affectionately speak to the audience, and how willing he was to share the stage with others while still providing genuine love for his fans along the way.

This was shown when MaSiWei let fellow Chinese music artist Luo Yan (罗言) otherwise known as RollFlash take to the stage for a few songs of his own. RollFlash displayed his equally impressive rap skills and beautiful singing voice which both surprised me and left me in awe. Especially with his song ‘橘子皮 (Tangerine Skin)’ which was performed a capella, filling the respectful venue with just his voice unaccompanied and it was exquisite. But it is when RollFlash combined his powers with MaSiWei to perform both ‘拜拜 (Bye-Bye)’ and ‘Champion Love Song (冠军情歌)’ did RollFlash really shine, with the latter a song from MaSiWei’s latest EP of the same name which was only released earlier this month (a few days ago).

MaSiWei confessed that he had never performed in a seated venue before and a quick decision was made which found him rapping in the aisles along with RollFlash in the orchestra seating of the Palais Theatre which was wild, fun, and unexpected, much to the delight of the lucky fans that were seated close to the action. This also inspired audiences in the dress circle to call for MaSiWei to come up to them for a few songs too, which he mischievously and happily obliged. MaSiWei made it upstairs to the dress circle to perform not one but several songs to the dress circle seated fans.

Although every song was well received with an equal exchange of cheers, energy, and excitement, it was the song ‘Made In China’ that really set the crowd off. MaSiWei could feel it too, even throwing his shirt into the audience while they joyfully chanted and sung along “Made In China!” with MaSiWei. The cherry on top of this moment was the golden dragon that appeared on the big screen and spun around from behind MaSiWei. I loved that detail and special touch!

Overall, while at first it felt very intimidating attending MaSiWei’s concert due to not being able to speak Chinese, I really enjoyed myself. I had been listening to MaSiWei’s music for a while and liked how accessible his music has been with some song titles in English and his music videos having subtitles. So even though I couldn’t speak Chinese, I’m still half-Chinese and I felt very in touch with my culture hearing and seeing MaSiWei perform in my city.

I had the best time at MaSiWei’s Melbourne show and should he return in the hopefully not-too-distant future, I would see him again in a heartbeat. But hopefully next time he actually plays ‘Eat Hot Pot (吃儿火锅)’ for me. Please.

MaSiWei performed a sold-out show in Melbourne at Palais Theatre on April 12th as part of the 2023 World Tour. Unfortunately, the Australian leg is over with Melbourne being the final stop. But Auckland, New Zealand is next with MaSiWei due to perform at Auckland Town Hall on Friday the 14th of April 2023.
For more information on MaSiWei and ticketing, visit:

Photography by Grant Alexander.

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