Package tours are often reserved for acts that might not be able to sell out a large venue solo.
But the pairing of Jennifer Lopez and Enrique Iglesias seems more about an opportunity for two old friends to share a marquee. After all, Iglesias sold out the Gwinnett Arena last fall and the celebrity of no-longer-“American-Idol”-judge Lopez all but guarantees a strong turnout.
The duo brings their joint project to Philips Arena on Wednesday as the tour that began last month begins to wind down (it wraps Sept. 2 in Orlando).
Based on recent reviews, Lopez has been performing first — which could always change — with a 14-song set stocked with hits (“Waiting for Tonight,” “Jenny from the Block,” “On the Floor”) and frequent costume changes. Iglesias’ portion, meanwhile, features the handsome singer donning his usual attire of jeans and baseball caps and running through a 12-song itinerary that includes “Be With You,” “Hero” and “I Like It.”
A few weeks before the tour kicked off, Lopez and Iglesias participated in a conference call with reporters – she was in Brazil, he was in the U.S.
Here’s what they had to say.
On how the tour came together
Iglesias: Really the ones who made the decision were Jennifer and myself because we are the ones that are gonna be on stage. At the end of the day, it’s our responsibility and if it goes well it’s our responsibility, and if it goes wrong, it’s our responsibility.
Lopez: It’s gonna be a really, really high-energy-filled, amazing show and I’m excited about that. I’m excited to bring me and Enrique and everything all over America. It’s pretty awesome.
On other co-headlining tours being an inspiration
Iglesias: I never really believed in it until I experienced it for myself and realized that a lot of these fans, they’re not your fans and vice-versa, and that actually works in a positive way because when the show is good, fans leave with a different perspective. At the same time, we know that economically it’s not the best of times, so fans get to see two acts for the price of one.
Lopez: A lot of times fans will be into the music of two or three [acts] and when you bring the right package together, it’s a really great experience for them.
On whether performing to a mostly Hispanic audience matters
Lopez: I don’t think it does. I think we both do pop music. I think it’s gonna be very bilingual.
Iglesias: I agree. I think it’s a bi-cultural tour. You know, a Puerto Rican [Lopez] …and me being Spanish and growing up in the U.S. and we sing music in Spanish and English. We’ve never been to a place in America where we haven’t seen at least one Hispanic person.
On whether being an “American Idol” judge made Lopez change her own live performance
Lopez: There are so many things… You’re always telling everybody be comfortable, be natural, be in control, all of those things that make a great performer, singing from your heart and listen to the lyrics. It’s so easy to say from a chair, but when you get up there, it’s hard to execute.
On their favorites songs from each other
Iglesias: Probably the first one that I heard from her, ‘If You Have My Love,’ just because at the time it came out it was a very significant time for Hispanic artists. I remember hearing that song and watching the video saying, ‘This makes total sense, and it’s perfect.’
Lopez: Oh, God, there’s so many, and you’re probably gonna hate me for this, but I would have to say the one that sticks out the most is always ‘Bailamos.’ I just loved it. That’s a very iconic moment for me for Enrique.
Enrique Iglesias and Jennifer Lopez (with Frankie J. opening) perform at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. $29.50-$95. Philips Arena, One Philips Drive, Atlanta. 1-800-745-3000, www.ticketmaster.com.