SINGAPORE - Popular British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran played the first of two sold-out shows to an estimated 10,000 fans at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on Saturday (Nov 11).
The ginger-haired singer, dressed simply in a black T-shirt and dark blue jeans, came on stage at 8.29pm with Castle On the Hill, a song from latest album ÷, to a deafening roar from the audience.
"We're all gonna lose our voices tonight," he said to the fans, who sang along to hits like The A Team, his debut single from 2011 album +.
Their age range was wide, from preteens to those in their middle ages, although a majority looked to be in their late teens to early twenties.
They include Ms Asavari Ingrole, 22, who was initially disappointed when she failed to get tickets when they first went on sale in May. She managed to buy one when the organisers released extra side-view tickets a few days before the first show.
The tickets to both shows were snapped up quickly after they went on sale in May, with many fans queuing up overnight at the venue's ticketing box office. On Thursday, organisers AEG Presents released a few hundred extra tickets offering side views of the stage, which also quickly sold out.
Ms Ingrole said: "He's an amazing singer with amazing capabilities, he's basically a one-man show and does everything on stage by himself. He's not afraid of touching on difficult issues in songs like The A Team, where he sings about drug abuse."
Ed Sheeran fans Lany Sungguh, 47, and Mimi Tan, 48, flew from Jakarta just for the show. Sheeran was supposed to perform in the Indonesian capital but cancelled the show after his injury affected his tour dates.
Ms Sungguh, seeing the singer perform for the first time, said: "His songs are like stories from the heart, they reflect a lot of things that happen in our lives."
The 26-year-old gave local fans quite a scare after he announced on social media in October that he was involved in a bicycle accident, which left him with a broken wrist, elbow and rib. He was forced to cancel the Taipei, Seoul, Hong Kong and Jakarta gigs in his Asian tour, while the Osaka, Tokyo and Manila shows were rescheduled for April 2018.
He later confirmed that the Singapore shows - which kick off a tour including gigs in Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Mumbai and Dubai - would go on as planned.
Sheeran last performed in Singapore to a 5,000 strong audience at The Star Theatre in 2015, also a sold-out show.
Songs from his third studio album released earlier this year, ÷ , topped music charts worldwide and he became the first artist to debut two songs simultaneously in Billboard's Top 10 charts. In Singapore, the singles took the top two spots in the charts of music streaming services Apple Music and Spotify upon their release.
He has won numerous awards, including two Grammys in 2016, Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance, for Thinking Out Loud, a song from his second album, ×.
He has won an Ivor Novello Award for the 2011 song, The A Team, from his debut album, +, and has also taken home Brit Awards for Best British Male Solo Artist and British Breakthrough Act in 2012, as well as Best Male Solo Artist and Album of the Year in 2015.