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Taylor Swift at Manchester's Etihad Stadium: Powerful and uniting, a pop masterpiece

by Khyle Deen. Published Sat 09 Jun 2018 12:28, last updated: 09/06/18

Taylor Swift made her first of two stops at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester last night, in what can only be described as an incredible event.

Throughout the night, snakes were a consistent theme, podiums, big snakes rising up from the stages, complimenting the theme for the tour completely.

Opening her set list with the Reputation album opener ... Ready For It? The crowd were on the feet erupting in cheers and singing along instantly.

From then on, it was an unforgettable experience, singing a wide collection of songs from all of her albums, adding a rocky feel to some, includinga powerful reworking of I Did Something Bad (backed by an army of backing dancers) made for an excellent evening of smash hits and fantastic mash-ups.

There were many highlights of the evening, including an intimate, acoustic rendition of I Knew You Were Trouble performed amongst the crowd.

Also played, was a touching, stripped down version of Dancing With Our Hands Tied, dedicated to the people of Manchester, after a tribute to a city which has “shown such incredible resilience” after the “attempt to steal the innocence and joy” of a pop concert that was the Manchester Arena terrorist attack.

Taylor’s unwaivering sincerity and strong level of care really shined and united the entire stadium to connect the audience in a way that very few artists are capable of.

The back catalogue performances added brilliantly to the show, a rocking, thumping performance of 1989’s Bad Blood (on a skeletal snake-shaped platform!!) mixed in with the chorus of Should’ve Said No, taken from her self-titled 2006 debut album was a great surprise.

Performing amongst the crowd too were support acts Charli XCX & Camila Cabello, joining Taylor Swift for a groovy dance along to Taylor’s 1989 hit Shake It Off.

A piano appeared on stage prior to the close, Taylor sat down, graciously thanked the fans again and spoke about fans sticking by her during her break between albums, that was another special, personal moment in which she performed her song Long Live, nicely transitioning the song into Reputation closing track New Year’s Day.

The exhilarating showstopper of a finale was a marvellous mashup of Red’s We Are Never Getting Back Together and Reputation’s This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things (a huge hit with everybody in the stadium.) Singing on a fountain, getting soaked by water jets, fireworks shooting from the stadium closed the show in an explosive way that capped off the night with a bang.

Charli XCX and Camila Cabello did a fantastic job of heating the crowd up ahead of Taylor Swift’s set, Camila being a highlight all on her own, displaying her dance skills and her voice with hits such as Bad Things and Havana.

For more information and tickets to other shows, go to https://www.taylorswift.com/events



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