Baby, let the games begin.
Taylor Swift’s “Eras Tour” kicked off Friday night in Glendale, Arizona during a three-hour show that ran through hits from every era of the Grammy winner’s 17-year career.
“Swifties,” as her fans are known, descended on the city in full Swift-inspired costumes, and the location itself was renamed “Swift City,” according to the Glendale, Arizona, website. Ticket sales for the tour even broke Ticketmaster, something the singer pointed out on Friday when she told her audience that she felt it was safe to assume it had taken “a significant amount of effort” for them to be there.
Full disclosure: This CNN writer is a Swiftie. I managed to secure tickets to Swift’s penultimate show in Los Angeles in August, but here are some of the highlights from her performance last Friday, based on social media posts from those in attendance.
Wearing a crystallized corset and matching boots, Swift kicked off her “Lover”-era concert by opening with “Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince,” a track from the 2019 album, then performed “Cruel Summer” for the very first time in concert.
While performing “Willow” and “Champagne Problems” from her pandemic-era album “Evermore,” Swift asked her audience, “Is it just me or do we have a lot of catching up to do?” It’s a fair question, since this tour is Swift’s first since her 2018 “Reputation” shows.
The crowd was brought back to the era when Swift performed popular hits like “Delicate” and “Don’t Blame Me” in a set where the “Reputation” snake slithered around.
The “Red” era brought even more backlash with some of Swift’s catchier tunes like “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” and “I Knew You Were Trouble.” Swift also performed the ten-minute version of “All Too Well”.
She then performed songs from her 2020 album “Folklore” for the first time in a live concert. Swift stood on a set decorated like the moss-covered “Folklore” cabin seen in several of her music videos. The moody and imaginative album was brought to life as she sang “Invisible String”, “Cardigan” and “Betty” among others. She later played an acoustic rendition of “Mirrorball”, after informing her audience that she would play a different acoustic song at each show throughout the tour.
In true “1989” fashion, this part of the show seemed to be one big dance party as it included some of Swift’s most popular hits like “Blank Space,” “Shake it Off” and “Wildest Dreams.”
There were other nostalgic moments throughout the show, Swift singing through her “Fearless” era with “You Belong with Me” and “Love Story.” She also sang “Tim McGraw” at the piano, a song from her earliest era in 2006.
As the concert reached its final and current era, Swift performed various songs from her record-breaking 2022 album “Midnights,” including “Anti-Hero,” “Lavender Haze,” “Mastermind” and “Bejeweled,” closing the show with the high-energy hit “Karma “.
Swift’s set list covered more than 40 songs, likely proving to her fans that an exhausting wait for their anti-hero Taylor Swift to return to the stage was worth it.