‘They rocked it’: Queen tribute show kills it at the MECC
Beginning with Don't Stop Me Now and ending with We Will Rock You, the Killer Queen Experience was everything you want from live shows after such a long hiatus.
Showmanship. Entertainment. Tunes everyone knows and can sing along to.
Freddie Mercury, aka John Blunt, said after the show on Friday night that his crew loved Mackay.
He said he had family here too which made it even more special each time he visited.
"We absolutely love Mackay, this is probably one of our favourite theatre venues without a doubt, it's absolutely great," he said.
"We love the people of Mackay, they're just so friendly and the food is always great. Tonight we had homemade pies backstage."
The Queenslander opened his short monologue with a line about how this state was the best place in the world to be right now - COVID FREE he shouted to many a cheer in return.
Tracey Pelling, from Racecourse, said she thought the show was fantastic, especially the costumes and the song Under Pressure.
She thanked the staff and management at the MECC, saying the food and show were great.
"We got invited by Valerie and didn't know what to expect but they really rocked it, it was great," she said.
"I thought he was pretty good although we were Googling him at intermission because we were trying to find out how old he was because he was absolutely rocking it there at one point.
"I was lucky enough to see Queen with Adam Lambert (in Milan) and that was a whole other experience.
Ms Pelling said her friend Valerie went blind and partially deaf at 28, and being able to go to a performance like Killer Queen had been amazing.
"I love the music. I like all music," Valerie said, saying her favourite Queen song was definitely Bohemian Rhapsody.
Mackay's Brodie Neill, 13, said it was his second live concert, having been to Robbie Williams in Brisbane first up.
The final song of the night, We Will Rock You, was his favourite on the night.
"It was amazing, he looks just like Freddie Mercury," he said as he lined up for a photo with the frontman.
His sister Chloe said: "It was definitely a good experience to see him. It's amazing how much of a resemblance he is (to Freddie Mercury)".
Their mum Emma said Bohemian Rhapsody was her favourite and the screen in the background brought the performance to life and gave it a "whole other perspective".
"He's awesome, he gave me goosebumps, it was just fantastic. Just like you were watching the real Freddie Mercury," she said.
Dad Wayne agreed with his son that We Will Rock You was the best.
Star Davies, 12, said it was her first live concert and she loved it.
She said Somebody to Love and Bohemian Rhapsody were her favourites from the night.
"I really like Queen songs. I like a lot of old bands," she said.
"(Queen) pushed a lot of boundaries and were really good songwriters.
"(John Blunt) did a great performance, he was really energetic."
After posing for photos with a lengthy line-up of theatre goers, Blunt said he been fortunate to be able to work during 2020, unlike many live acts banned during the COVID lockdown.
The 51-year-old Queensland performer said much of it had been experimental but they had been willing to give anything a shot.
"We've been the canary down the mine for a lot of entrepreneurial promoters through COVID that were doing shows in drive-ins and we felt very grateful and fortunate to get the call," he said.
"I think they felt we might have been the brand to trust. Of course, Queen is also a brand to trust.
"We've been struck hard with COVID but we were lucky to pick up one show or two right in the very heart of the lockdowns and when it was all kind of miserable.
"They were weird, don't get me wrong, they were weird.
"We played in a drive-in to cars and no-one was allowed out of their cars.
"Have you seen the Disney movie, Cars? That's what it was like, and people were flashing their lights which felt like eyes."
Blunt said choosing a favourite Queen song was difficult and it changed frequently.
"It changes all the time, kind of like food where sometimes you'll crave seafood or crave for Italian food or chicken," he said.
"I'm really enjoying singing the ballads at the moment, I don't know what it is, I might be getting older.
"I just enjoy baring your soul and everyone can connect with a sad song because the words and the lyrics have meaning - everyone has had their heart broken, I guess.
"Save Me would be my favourite at the moment."