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Inside Robbie Wiliams’ huge London gig including surprising backstage rider and plans to bring on a pop ‘special guest’

ALMOST three decades after he quit Take That to launch a solo career, ­Robbie Williams is still at the top of his game.

He proved all the doubters and naysayers wrong to become one of the country’s biggest music stars, amassing 75million global record sales.

Robbie Willaims on stage at the Granca Live Fest in Las Palmas, Canary Islands[/caption]
Robbie with his wife Ayda Field[/caption]
Robbie said: ‘I walked through Hyde Park dressed in pink with diamante sunglasses and nobody recognised me’[/caption]

And now Robbie is preparing for the biggest six months of his career, with a new album and film biopic in the offing.

He will kick off with a mammoth sold-out show at London’s Hyde Park tonight, in front of 65,000 people.

But before that he will settle down in the comfort of his plush new West London home to watch England take on Switzerland in their crunch Euros quarter-final.

The two-hour BST gig will see Robbie, 50, belt out some of his biggest hits, including Let Me Entertain You, Supreme, Rock DJ and of course, the song that changed his life, Angels.

While he is no stranger to performing live, insiders told how Robbie has been meticulously planning this ­comeback gig for months.

A source said: “Robbie has been locked in rehearsals for weeks in East London.

“He always puts his all into every show he does but he also knows that tonight’s Hyde Park gig will really be special.

“Production-wise, he is going all out and has a full dance troupe who have spent the past few days perfecting the impressive choreography.

“Robbie has lined up at least one special guest to pop up during his set though their identities are a closely guarded secret.”

In years gone by, Robbie would not think twice about knocking back shots before going on stage.

In fact, in his four-part Netflix documentary, Robbie, released last November, he admits a lot of his gigs have gone by in a blur — including his three sold-out nights at Knebworth, Herts, in 2003.

Now sober for 24 years, Robbie won’t be having a pre-show tipple to calm his nerves in the park venue’s ­exclusive backstage pop-up pub The Golden Lion.

Instead, The Sun understands he has requested a mini fridge to be packed with chilled bottled water and large stacks of ice.

A source added: “Back in the day it was booze and junk food all round but now Robbie is laser-focused on his health.

“His backstage set-up is actually quite boring, it’s all about water and healthy food.

“Robbie is in the gym five days a week and has a personal trainer and personal chef to cook him healthy but tasty meals.

“From his heaviest, he’s about 4st down — and he’s never felt better.”

On Instagram Live backstage from Finland last summer, ­Robbie admitted that despite having a rigorous fitness regime he still ­worries about overdoing it on stage.

Not that he lets his fears cause him to tone down his shows.

Robbie said: “I am a middle-aged man throwing my body around the stage, so that can cause anxiety about having to do it again, but it is such a rush.

“I don’t know, this tour has been more fun than any of the tours. It’s a mixture of being in love with it and being terrified of it. I can see why people get addicted to it.”

Robbie celebrated a milestone birthday in February, snubbing a giant bash to quietly turn 50 with his wife Ayda Field, 45, and their four children, daughters Theodora, 11 and Colette, five, and sons Charlton, nine, and Beau, three, by his side.

‘Kids my purpose’

Robbie said: “Responsibility has been really good for me and ­having four kids and the onus not being on me but being on them. Before the kids arrived I was always in one crisis or another, ­desperately trying to make sense of everything.

“Then, when the kids came, I didn’t have to make sense of anything, it just is.

“That has been the big difference in my life. Just get on with it. They are my purpose.”

Robbie and Ayda married in 2010 after eight months of engagement and having dated for four years.

He had made his name with Take That, the boyband he joined in 1990 aged 16, their first hit coming in 1992.

Reflecting on his record-breaking career, he said: “At the age of 50 everything feels like a lap of honour.

“Thirty-one years is how long I’ve been in people’s lives.

“We have a lot of shared experiences and I think people are used to me now and I’m very grateful. I’m very, very protective, so when I manage to separate myself and look at what’s going on [from the stage], I just see a sea of people smiling and it feels amazing.

I walked through Hyde Park dressed in pink with diamante sunglasses and nobody recognised me or bothered me and I really need them to. It wasn’t like this in the Nineties

Robbie Williams

“I wish I could bottle it and take it with me. It’s so fleeting but so special and so important in my life.”

Once his Hyde Park show is out of the way Robbie will start gearing up to hit the promotional trail for the big-budget biopic about his life.

Better Man will be released in ­cinemas worldwide on Christmas Day, with Paramount Pictures splashing out £22million to secure the North America rights — the most they have spent for an indie film in years.

Headed up by The Greatest Showman director Michael Gracey, the film is an original musical.

Robbie said of the project: “I’ve got loads planned. I’ve got my film ­coming out at the end of this year and I just did the Netflix thing.

Robbie with three of his children on the beach[/caption]
The BST stage in Hyde Park in London[/caption]

“A lot of American companies are putting a lot of money into promoting the film and they are talking about awards season.

“Anyone who has seen it has been like, ‘Wow!’ I think I am about to get lucky again. I’ve never been busier.

“I’ve never been as ambitious as I am right now. I am full of purpose and I’m loving life.”

Throughout his glittering career, Robbie has landed 14 No1 albums and 7 No1 singles here.

It means he has the most No1 albums for any solo artist, leapfrogging “The King”, Elvis Presley.

And Robbie’s 13th studio album, his first since 2019’s The Christmas Present, is also said to be in the works.

And that is on top of him putting on his first-ever art exhibition, Pride And Self-Prejudice, at the Moco Museum in Amsterdam in March this year.

A source said: “Robbie’s brain is constantly active and he’s always thinking of new ideas to be creative.

“His home has an art studio where he spends a lot of time unwinding and painting.

“Robbie has made no secret of loving being the centre of attention and doesn’t want to stop living his life in the public eye.”

Last month he showed off his self-deprecating humour in a video with US actress Ayda showing him walking through Hyde Park and, amazingly, not being recognised.

Robbie admits in the video: “This is very concerning.

‘Centre of attention’

“We didn’t know we were going to walk back from the restaurant so I’m walking through Hyde Park dressed completely in pink and diamante sunglasses and absolutely nobody has recognised me or bothered me and I really need them to.

“I’ll take my glasses off for a bit. It wasn’t like this in the Nineties.”

Insisting he wouldn’t change ­anything about his life or career, Robbie has previously said: “I would want to come back and do it all again.

“As souls depart this mortal coil and get another chance I would do it all again.

“I’ve been so incredibly lucky. What an unbelievable journey.”

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