Taylor Swift, Etihad Stadium, Manchester
Graham Clark, Features Writer
Camila Cabello has had one of the biggest hits of the year so far with her track, Havana. Making the most of the opportunity to support Taylor Swift on her Reputation Stadium tour, Cabello gave a strong performance that touched on Ariana Grande at times.
After starting off well her set dropped slightly with some forgettable songs, it was closing track, Havana when things began to make sense.
One of the highest grossing tours of the year will surely be the Taylor Swift Reputation Stadium tour. The dates are mostly in America with the European gigs taking place in Dublin, London and Manchester: many had travelled to the gig from the north of England.
If this had been your first experience at a Stadium gig it would have been a fine introduction. Fireworks, huge video screens, confetti cannons were all present, it seemed like she had pulled every special effect out of the box.
She clearly likes to interact with her fans: outside the stadium there are replica throne seats that are featured in her video providing a good photo opportunity to her mainly female fan base. She reaches every part of the Stadium - besides the main stage there were 2 mini stages at the back, wearing glittering outfits to made sure everybody could see her.
The fans are given bracelets as they enter the concert, which light up in different colours during the gig - to the uninitiated it's a masterpiece, for those in the know it is nothing new - Coldplay used the same gimmick when they played the same Stadium a few years ago.
The special effects never took away from the music, clearly there has been a lot of thought put into the show. Split into 6 acts throughout the show, she appears from the back of the stage, her head covered in a hood as Ready For It reverberates around the stadium.
The fireworks are on display during I Did Something Bad and it's only the second song!
Huge snakes appear from the stage during her hit, Look What You Made Me Do, it was more like an Iron Maiden show in the mid 80's than a pop gig mixed with the best pantomime special effect you could think of.
She glides across the pitch in a cage to the smaller stages at the back to perform Shake It Off with the support acts Camila Cabello and Charli XCX,
Not forgetting the atrocity that happened in Manchester just over a year ago she thanks her fans for their resilience and declares "it's an honour to play for you tonight" - sincerely put. To prove she is a musician too she plays an acoustic guitar to 22 and Dancing With Our Hands Tied.
As she travels back in another cage - this time with a snake on it she arrives to play a grand piano to perform Long Live and New Years Day. Tactfully the video screens show her actually playing the piano.
By the time she concludes with We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together coupled with This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things the fireworks are off again.
An illuminating performance - for pure spectacle and entertainment her reputation is intact after what is one of the best shows I've seen so far this year.
|Also by Graham Clark...|
|Billy Idol, Manchester Apollo|
|Lionel Richie, Scarborough Open Air Theatre|
|Review Of Blue And Steps, Keep Moat Stadium, Doncaster|
|The Play That Goes Wrong - Interview With Bobby Hirston|
|Let's Rock Leeds! - The Retro Festival|
Taylor Swift, Etihad Stadium, Manchester, 9th June 2018, 16:24 PM