To say Taylor Swift is one of the most successful and relevant artists of her generation is to state the utter-obvious. Accolades like selling over 200 million records worldwide, winning 11 Grammy Awards, and being named Billboard’s Woman of the Decade don’t happen overnight.
Swift‘s music is often personal and confessional, and she has been praised for her ability to write songs that resonate with her fans. Her songs often deal with themes of love, loss, and heartbreak, but she also writes about other topics such as feminism, body image, and social justice. Her music has helped to break down barriers and empower young women, and she has become a role model for many. In addition to her music, Taylor is also known for her strong social media presence and her willingness to speak out on social and political issues. She has used her platform to speak out against sexism, homophobia, and gun violence, while also being a vocal supporter of the LGBTQ+ community, donating money to various charities.
Swift recently embarked in her massive “The Eras Tour”, and we had the opportunity to attend the third consecutive night in Tampa, when she took the stage at the Raymond James Stadium to a sold-out crowd of over 60,000 fans. The night was filled with electrifying performances, impressive outfits, and surprise acoustic sets that left fans breathless.
Music kicked off in the afternoon, with opening acts Gracie Abrams and Beebadoobee, both talented young artists who set the mood for an unforgettable night. Gracie Abrams‘ heartfelt ballads and Beebadobee‘s indie pop-rock sound were the perfect complement to Taylor’s unique style and set the stage for what was to come.
The main show began with a pre-recorded video of Swift talking about her career and her love of music. The video faded and she opened with a shortened performance of “Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince”, followed by “Cruel Summer”. Her opening look was a shimmering purple-pink leotard adorned with intricate beading and gems, and she was accompanied by a full band. Taylor changed outfits a total of eight times throughout the night, each one more dazzling than the last. She later changed into a red and black, one-legged jumpsuit and a dazzling gold flapper-like dress, each one showcasing her impeccable fashion sense and style. However, one thing didn’t change throughout the next three hours: the ecstatic and frenzy rapture of every soul in attendance, and the somewhat mystical connection between them and Taylor.
The entire spectacle production was a visual feast for the eyes, with elaborate sets, stunning lighting, and intricate choreography. The stage was adorned with giant screens displaying visuals that added to the overall experience of the concert. The massive 44-songs set-list navigated through her albums, as the tour title implies, with material from “Fearless”, “Evermore”, “Reputation”, “Red”, “1989” and “Folklore” represented with several cuts. The crowd sang along to every word and they danced and cheered throughout the entire performance. Swift took breaks between each ‘era’ and talk to the crowd. She told them how much she loved performing and how grateful she was for their support, while also talked about the importance of women in music and how she wanted to use her platform to empower young girls. To say she connected to her fans at every level would be another understatement.
In addition to her chart-topping hits, Taylor surprised the audience with a set of acoustic songs – a ever-changing section of the tour dubbed ’Surprise Songs’ – , accompanied by long-time partner Aaron Dessner, making his second appearance at a show, including fan favorites like “Mad Woman” and “Mean”, the latter a tour debut and the first time she plays it since 2018. The intimate performance brought a new level of emotion and connection to the concert, making it clear why she has such a dedicated fan base, and the fact she played the guitar during “Mean” was truly the icing on the cake. The night ended with the double feature of “Mastermind” and “Karma”, with the audience going wild, cheering and singing along, as Swift belted out the verses. It was a truly magical moment and it was also clear that Taylor was having just as much fun as the crowd was.
Unsurprisingly, the closing night of “The Eras Tour” in Tampa was an unforgettable experience for the thousand of fans lucky enough to attend. Sporting her well-known impressive vocal ability, captivating stage presence, and natural charisma, Taylor Swift is not only one of the biggest names in the music industry, but a musical phenomenon that will live on for decades to come.