Photos and review by Curtis Vadnais.
SEATTLE, WA — Pop sensation Taylor Swift brought her highly anticipated ‘reputation Stadium Tour’ to CenturyLink Field in Seattle, WA on Tuesday night. The stop marked the fourth city for the “Gorgeous” songstress, who embarked on the 53-date trek earlier this month in Glendale, AZ. Swift expressed her excitement of returning to the road via her Instagram stories, allowing fans a glimpse into what she had in store for the weeks to come.
The Seattle stop proved to be extremely successful, despite a slight setback with tour opener Camila Cabello’s cancellation due to dehydration a day prior to the show. Starting nearly thirty minutes later than anticipated, Charli XCX took the stage as the night’s only opening act. “What’s up, Seattle?!” she proclaimed before breaking out into “Boom Clap.” Fans were still filing into the stadium, as she performed signature hits such as “Unlock It,” “Break the Rules,” Icona Pop’s “I Love It,” and set closing number and Iggy Azalea collaboration, “Fancy.”
As the sun began to set following a brief intermission, an interlude filled the video screens, depicting prominent moments of scrutiny in Swift’s life from both a personal standpoint, as well as the media. As the screens diverged, fans roared as Swift emerged center stage donning a bejeweled black bodysuit. “Are you ready for it?” she inquired with the crowd, as smoke machines went off simultaneously on nearly every corner of the platform. It was abundantly clear Swift was making a declarative introduction to the spectacle that was about to materialize, and she made sure those in attendance knew it. Following the second single off reputation, she smoothly transitioned into a slightly modified version of “I Did Something Bad.” Despite not being an official single, it proved to be positively receptive amongst fans, who were immersed in an abundance of fireworks, pyrotechnics, and smoke effects throughout the entire number. “They’re burning all the witches even if you aren’t one. So, go ahead and light… me… up,” Swift cooed in the final bridge during an impressive lift by her backup dancers.
Throughout the course of the night, Swift was accompanied by a plethora of animatronic snakes, most prominently featured in “Look What You Made Me Do,” and even 1989’s “Shake It Off,” where she was joined by fellow tour opener Charli XCX. “Since I was 16 and I put out my first album, I’ve had this very predictable schedule. You know, I’d put out an album and then I’d tour. That happened over and over again, and the first time I ever broke that cycle was when I was making reputation. I decided that it would be really important for me to figure out who I would be as a person and what decisions I would make if I didn’t have a spotlight on me. So, I went away and I got to do that, but the coolest thing was that you understood that and you were right here when I got back,” Swift expressed to the audience mid-set.
Stadiums aren’t the most intimate of places to hold events, but Swift challenged that as she was transported to both stages toward the back of the stadium for a few fan-focused performances, including “Delicate,” an acoustic rendition of “Dancing With Our Hands Tied,” and even wild-card number “Holy Ground,” which marked the debut performance of the Red track on the tour.
Following her return to the main stage, where Swift decided to soften the tempo with a few piano numbers, she was greeted by a near-deafening roar from 56,000 fans. “You guys are on some other level that I am not used to. You make me wanna move here!” she said gleamingly in response. For being undoubtedly one of the most criticized people in the music industry, Swift has had an incredibly successful career, crafting six studio albums, all of which were incorporated into the official setlist for the tour. Despite her metaphorically killing off the “Old Taylor”, she reinforced the fact that she didn’t forget her roots or where her diehard fans began their journey. She managed to perform nearly all of reputation, in addition to 10 other songs from each of her studio albums including Fearless’ “Love Story,” Speak Now’s “Long Live,” 1989’s “Bad Blood,” and 2006 self-titled debut album single “Should’ve Said No.” Swift closed out the night with a mash-up of “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” and “This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things,” which was contrastingly a lighter side of the production (albeit ironic, due to the latter being a diss track to her long-time celebrity foe). The number showcased Swift and her dancers embracing their carefree sides amidst a park fountain, which had them nearly drenched by show closing.
Swift’s stadium tour is not one to pass up, whether you’re a diehard Swiftie or someone who appreciates an all-around immersive production. The ‘reputation Stadium Tour’ will continue on through November of this year, set to finish in Tokyo, Japan. Tickets, merchandise, and special packages can be purchased via Swift’s official website at www.taylorswift.com. ‘reputation’ is available now.