Fans holding out hope for a girl-powered pop reunion can breathe a zig-a-zig-ah sigh of relief.
The Spice Girls finally told us they want (they really, really want) to reunite, with the now thirtysomething Victoria Beckham, Melanie Brown, Emma Bunton, Geri Halliwell and Melanie Chisholm set to relive their '90s glory days with an 11-city world tour this winter.
All five Spices joined together for Thursday's unsurprising announcment at London's O2 Arena. The reunion, rumored—and downplayed—for weeks, was assumed to be a fait accompli once Simon Fuller, the Svengali who first unleashed the group on an unsuspecting public more than a decade ago, announced the quintet would be holding a press conference to "discuss future plans" several days ago.
"We are girl power," said Halliwell, 34. "It doesn't matter how old you are, 5 or 65."
Of why now was the right time to reunite, Halliwell, aka Ginger Spice, told reporters, "I think for us it was about celebrating the past, enjoying each other and it's about our fans. It was kind of now or never."
"We are going to celebrate the past," echoed "Posh" Beckham, 33, easily the most famous Spice alum.
Chisholm, 33, who up until this morning's announcement had been the loudest detractor of a possible professional rekindling, telling the BBC earlier this year that they could "never recreate" the magic, cited a girl's prerogative in changing her reconciling tune.
"A girl is allowed to change her mind and also this is something that we have only seriously started this year really," Sporty said. "I think really all of us have had our fears and doubts but we feel that the time is right."
Brown, 32, concurred, adding, "We wanted to have some fun and be together again for a while."
Though not too long a while.
The reunion, though highly anticipated, particularly on the other side of the pond, will be relatively short-lived, at least at first, with Posh, Ginger, Baby, Sporty and Scary performing 11 gigs in just over a month.
While no venues have been announced for the tour, the dates have, and the musical bonanza will kick off Dec. 7 in Los Angeles and make its way to Las Vegas, New York, London, Cologne, Madrid, Beijing, Hong Kong, Sydney and Cape Town before wrapping up Jan. 24 in Buenos Aires.
As demand for the tickets will likely be high, the girls have employed a lottery system to divvy up tickets for the "once in a lifetime opportunity."
Wannabe concertgoers can register their details on line and wait it out to see if they are one of the lucky ones to be chosen to purchase tickets.
"Hey everybody!!" read the message on their official Website. "We're back!! Can you believe it!!
"This is a chance for you, our real fans, to come and see us—the last chance to dance! Girl Power is back and stronger than ever."
As it is, Girl Power first kicked off in 1996, when the group's first chart-busting single, "Wannabe," was released. The personality-infused singers quickly staked their claim on the music world, selling more than 55 million albums worldwide and even starring in the their own movie, Spice World, long before Justin met Kelly.
After their whirlwind introduction to fame, however, things began to unravel in 1998, when Halliwell unceremoniously left the group on the eve of a world tour, citing "creative differences" with the girls. Beckham, Brown, Chisholm and Bunton continued on as a foursome and released one final album, 2000's Forever, before hanging up the Spice racket in lieu of solo endeavors.
The group was first rumored to be reuniting for the Live 8 concerts in 2005, but that never came to fruition. The speculation picked up earlier this year, with fans hoping the fivesome would be back together for this weekend's Princess Diana tribute concert or the Live Earth concerts on July 7, but with "Scary" Brown recently giving birth, "Baby" Bunton, 31, pregnant and the Beckham family in the middle of a move to L.A., any such plans were scuttled.
This year's tour will mark the first time the artists have performed as a quintet since 1998.