A Concert Review

London Calling: Nightwish At Wembley Arena

After a wait of almost three years, I finally got to see the band take the stage in an arena setting. It was a night worth waiting for.

Carl J. Petersen
8 min readNov 24, 2022

“We were here!”

- Nightwish

I was introduced to Nightwish through a video of their 2013 performance at the Wacken festival in Germany. I was instantly mesmerized by their exciting pyrotechnics, unique soundscape, and singer, Floor Jansen, who had soaring vocals and the ability to hold the crowd in the palm of her hand. The band’s discography immediately found itself in constant rotation in my playlists.

Since high school, my favorite band has been Queen. This included a time when it was hard to get access to their back catalog as their popularity had waned in the States. For many years, they did not even have an American recording contract and their CDs could only be found in the expensive export bin. They were selling out stadiums across the globe but were not even touring in the United States.

Similarly, Nightwish headlines festivals in Europe, but only play in small theaters in America. I had seen the band twice at the Grove in the shadow of Angel Stadium in Anaheim and the 1,700-seat venue was an intimate setting that made me appreciate Jansen’s vocal abilities even more. Still, watching this band on a small stage was like taking a wild animal and constraining it within the confines of the cage at a zoo. I longed to see Nightwish in their native habitat.

As 2019 came to a close, the band started to announce dates for their next world tour. Having never traveled outside of North America, my wife and I decided that we would make the jump. At first, we set our sights on the festival circuit, but due to my wife’s mobility considerations, we decided to select a date for the arena portion of the tour. Tickets were purchased for the Wembley Arena stop and the anticipation began. And then COVID hit and the world came to a stop.

Like all other bands, Nightwish was forced to suspend their trek across the world as the…



Carl J. Petersen

Parent, special education advocate and former LAUSD School Board candidate. Still fighting for the children. www.ChangeTheLAUSD.com