When Adele took the stage at the 2022 BRIT Awards to perform “I Drink Wine,” a power ballad from her fourth studio album, 30, she half expected the audience to erupt into booing when she finished – and was surprised when she was instead met with applause. “It felt strange receiving so much love when I’d let people down,” the singer told ELLE in a recent interview that finds her opening up, at length, for the first time about the sudden cancellation of her Las Vegas residency earlier this year.
In January, the night before her 24-date residency billed Weekends With Adele was scheduled to begin at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Adele shared a tearful video on social media explaining that the slate of shows would be indefinitely postponed. While she cited Covid-19 and delivery delays as explanations, the fact of the matter was that the show simply wasn’t ready.
“There was just no soul in it,” Adele told ELLE. “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.”
The singer described the decision to cancel the shows, which have since been rescheduled to begin in November, as “the worst moment in my career, by far,” adding: “I was so excited about those shows. It was devastating.”
For Adele, it wasn’t as simple as canceling the shows and moving on — the decision halted almost all promotional plans for 30, her long-awaited follow-up to 25, including the release of a temporarily-shelved music video. “I went into hiding,” the singer said. “I was embarrassed.” She said she felt as though continuing to make appearances supporting the album, or even lingering on social media, would be in poor taste given the cancelation. “I didn’t want anyone to think I wasn’t trying my best.”
During her time away from the spotlight, Adele said she completely reworked the residency to answer the question: “How do I make a stadium-size stage feel small in that room?” Weekends With Adele is said to be a career-spanning event, with the singer describing the show as nostalgic and beautiful.
“Right now, all I got in my brain is Vegas,” she told ELLE. “I wanna fucking nail it.”