Updated: Nov 6
Photo: Jen Ramm
Friendship bracelets were traded, and popcorn was bought and inevitably spilt. Song lyrics were screamed at the highest possible volume, glitter got everywhere. It was Friday the 13th which could’ve added to the chaos. Or perhaps the Eras Tour had just arrived at Peterborough’s Showcase Cinema.
Filmed over three sold-out performances at LA’s SoFi Stadium, Taylor Swift takes us on a journey across all ten of her albums, which are lovingly referred to as eras. Her music career, adorned with accolades and scandals alike, spans seventeen years. Taylor, with her usual bubbly persona and immaculate, intimate crowd work, shares with us that a tour in which she gathers all her albums into one performance was inevitable.
It’s impressive, really, that an artist so young has such a sweeping collection of songs and albums. Taylor doesn’t represent the modern pop star; she defines it, setting the curve. Each era represents a time in her life, whether that be the heartbrokenness of Red, the thirst for revenge on Reputation, or the wide-eyed newness of Fearless. Except Taylor tells us that now, these songs are ours. Ours to cry to, scream to, assign exes to. She welcomes us in, not only to her discography but to parts of her life. And wow, does she do it with style!
Visually, The Eras Tour does not disappoint. Between aerial shots of the stage in all its glory and close-ups of fans singing their hearts out, you become a part of the experience. Veering into musical theatre territory, Taylor and her bevvy of fiercely talented dancers and backup singers don’t just put on a show, they become storytellers. We see this mostly in the Folklore and Evermore eras, her more understated, folk-inspired albums. A table is meticulously set for dinner then trashed, and a cosy cabin appears for Taylor to live out her woodland fairy fantasies.
The stage, with its changing design corresponding with the themes of the eras, becomes a place for Taylor to pummel passion into. She lets the flowing fabric of her dresses guide her through the emotions of songs like Illicit Affairs and August. Then she sparkles and shines while performing her ‘glitter gel pen’ songs like Shake It Off and Cruel Summer. I think for many people, she’s living proof that you can survive heartbreak and pain and make something beautiful out of it.
The Eras Tour is a bejewelled spectacle – a testament to Taylor’s dedication to her craft. And now, it belongs to fans worldwide.