Imagine 51,000 people, the vast majority of them women and girls. Many of them are wearing either hand-decorated t-shirts, or light summer dresses, cowboy hats and boots. Now imagine them all, screaming as one, or singing along with one huge voice, and you just might have some idea what it was like to be at the Taylor Swift concert at Lincoln Financial Field last night.
I bought three tickets for concert way back in February. The plan was that dd and I would go, and dd would pick a friend to join us. Dd asked her good friend from next door, and they both have been counting down the days until the concert for weeks. A few days ago, they had the idea to make special t-shirts.
The shirts have a picture of Taylor Swift on the front ...
...and a list of all the girls' favorite T.S. songs on the back. (They also decided to write "Swift" on the top of the back of the shirt, like a sports jersey. Get it? Team Swift?)
The concert turned out to be amazing, and one of the best shows I have ever seen in my my entire life. It may even be the best show, I am not sure. It was dd's first concert ever--I hope she's not spoiled for life now, LOL.
The opening acts seemed to go on forever. I guess I am out of practice when it comes to concerts: when I saw the tickets said 7 p.m., I really thought we needed to be there by 7 p.m. Taylor Swift herself did not come on stage until about 8:30 or so, which made for a long wait, broken up by 3 or 4 songs each from a series of country singers. (The last one, NeedtoBreathe, we liked quite a lot, though.)
When the main show finally began, the crowd came to its feet and the sound of screaming was a palpable, living thing. It was amazing. The show began with words being written on the jumbo screens, and a Taylor Swift voiceover, but I could not really hear what she was saying over the roar of the crowd. Then the singer herself rose up through a trap door in the floor of the stage. She began to sing "Sparks Fly," complete with fireworks shooting from the top of the stage to punctuate the chorus. The crowd was her back-up, singing along with every word.
That's when I realized this was no mere concert. This was going to be something else.
I still am not sure what to call last night's event. It was not just a concert. It was a show in every sense of the word. The production value was incredible. For every song, there was a dance, or a scene acted out, or a story was told. The band and the dancers were terrific. The staging was beautiful. The costume changes were many.
For "Back to December," Taylor Swift and a white piano rose from beneath the stage in a glitter snowstorm that captivated the crowd. Dd tapped my shoulder, bouncing and pointing. "The snow is glitter, Mom, it's GLITTER!" For "Haunted," Swift pretended to ring enormous brass bells that eventually were lifted above the stage to reveal dancers suspended beneath them. There was something special in every song of the night. And throughout it all, Taylor Swift seemed as impressed with the huge crowd that sang as one as it was with her. "Philly," she said, more than once, "You're AMAZING."