It doesn’t matter how big and grand the venues get for Ed Sheeran - wherever he plays, the atmosphere he creates has the feel of a very intimate gig, irrespective of the tens of thousands of screaming fans.
Despite his huge global success that sells out arenas several times over, Ed still manages to keep that gorgeous stripped-back simplicity with his performances that has the crowds hanging off his every lyric.
It represents a confidence in the power of his own songs, where he doesn’t feel the need to succumb to the temptation of using big graphics and special effects, or deploying gimmicks on stage.
It’s just Ed, his voice, and his guitar. And as usual that perfect combination went down a storm for Ed’s two dates at Roundhay Park, rounding off his mammoth Divide world tour after more than two years on the road.
Perhaps the most magical moment of all at Roundhay was Ed’s performance of The A Team, where he invited everyone in the crowd of more than 40,000 to light up the park with their phone lights.
Despite the crazy busyness of the park, you felt like you would have been able to hear a pin drop. A touching reminder of how far he has come, Ed recalled how at the start of his career 10 years ago, he was standing in The Cockpit in Leeds singing that same track to a ‘crowd’ of just a handful of people.
Ed soon had his fans dancing and singing along with him, as he hurtled through an impressive catalogue of chart-topping hits that highlighted his range as an artist - with everything from rap and floorfillers, to slower love songs and tunes with an Irish twist such as Galway Girl.
And he performed continuously without taking a single break, delighting fans as he gave every single track his all - wearing a huge smile on his face, and showing obvious delight to be back in Leeds after so long away. It’s no wonder that fans were left chanting for more.