Taylor Swift Brings the Eras Tour to Kansas City

Taylor Swift on the Eras Tour in Kansas City. Photo by Josh Chaikin

When an artist like Taylor Swift comes to town, cities react in unusual ways; KC was no exception. Kansas City welcomed Taylor Swift in so many creative ways from changing two street signs in North Kansas City, at the corner of Swift and Armor, and illuminating downtown buildings with a purple glow, to the homage at Union Station, including light up “Swiftie” photo ops (and Taylor Swift themed laser light shows). And let’s not forget the enormous portrait etched into a local field!

I arrived at Arrowhead Stadium on July 7th, 2023, at 1:20 PM, waiting, with unbridled anticipation, for the gates to open. There were “Swifties” dressed in full sequin mingling, trading bracelets, and speculating about what the surprise song would be. Although I had nothing to trade, two girls insisted I take one, and I did. The bracelet read, “Taylor’s Version”

Swifties were lining up outside the stadium, and the lines were becoming lengthy. The outdoor stadium was filled with fans dressed in all ten of Taylor’s eras, and Swifties were showing off their homemade bracelets. As I progressed through the line I received the color changing, light up bracelet. I made my way to the floor level where more Swifties were talking about their favorite eras, and trading bracelets. I spotted well known Swiftie, Jennifer Garner, sporting bracelets from wrist to elbow. Garner’s son, Samuel, and I traded bracelets, and I received a pink and gold “KC” bracelet from him.

Gracie Abrams was seen proudly supporting Taylor’s new album release by wearing a shirt that read “Speak Now”, and a purple hair ribbon. She played four songs, and showcased her musical talent to the audience. Muna had an 8 song set, and dedicated their performance to the LGBTQ+, and trans community. Both opening acts, thanked Taylor Swift for an amazing opportunity.

At the sight of the huge clock showing the 2-minute mark, Arrowhead Stadium burst into a frenzy of excitement. Fans were jumping, shouting, and dancing, with a few even shedding tears of joy. From that moment on, I realized I was in for a remarkable experience. Taylor’s performance was breathtaking, marked by her stunning costumes, impeccable choreography, mesmerizing visuals, and flawless vocals.

Swift wowed Kansas City in multiple ways by dropping her re-recorded album, “Speak Now (Taylor’s Version)”, on the first day of her Eras Tour at Arrowhead. Throughout the concert, Taylor performed chosen tracks from all ten eras, displaying her exceptional talent and ability to connect with her fans.

Taylor is not only engaged with her fans, her energy with her dancers and band members is also remarkable, from being flirty with a guitarist, to taking a moment to acknowledge her new pianist, Karina DePiano, she manages to charm everyone.

In true Taylor style, the night was full of surprises. In the words of a friend’s daughter, “We were so spoiled.”

Standing on stage in a beautiful, long, yellow dress, Taylor announced the surprise premiere of her newest music video for the song “I See You Now”, featuring Taylor Lautner, Joey King, and Presley Cash. After sharing the video with fans, Taylor said “Wouldn’t it be fun if we just did like a little movie premiere?” and then with that special brand of Taylor magic, who should appear on stage, but, Taylor Lautner, Joey King, and Presley Cash. Cash, who is a Missouri native, addressed the crowd, saying “It’s good to be back home in, Missouri.”

Joey King, covering her mouth said, “Oh my gosh Taylor I’m so nervous”. Lautner gave Taylor thanks by saying, ”I respect you so much, not just for the singer you are, the songwriter, the performer, but truly the human you are. You are gracious, humble, kind and I’m honored to know you.”

And the surprises just kept coming…Taylor performed the acoustic song “Never Grow Up”, and the surprise song “When Emma Falls In Love” (Taylor’s Version).

As the show was drawing to a close, Taylor told fans “Dream about the memories we make tonight” that’s not going to be hard after a show like last night at Arrowhead.

Words by Jennifer Suhr and Melissa Cooper
Photos by Josh Chaikin

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