Dig Baton Rouge

Taylor Swift’s Rebirth

By Claire Salinas

Taylor Swift brought local love, heartfelt advice and all the glitz and glam of pop to her show in Tiger Stadium on Friday night, but most of all she proved she is not joking about converting from a country crooner to a pop princess.

Swift opened her set in a sparkling skirt suit, singing “Welcome to New York.”

The wristbands distributed to the crowd before the show lit up to the tune of each song, and even changed colors to match the wardrobe of Swift and her dancers at one point.

Throughout the intro to “Welcome to New York,” she beamed with confidence as she told the crowd, “Hey my name is Taylor…we’re in a stadium of 50,000 people….and one more thing you should know about me, I was born in 1989.”

Perhaps one of the boldest departures from Swift’s previously elegant concert style came when 11 shirtless male dancers strutted onto the runway to perform a Magic Mike-esque dance number along with her singing. In that moment it was clear she has officially gone pop.

Later, Swift explained to the roaring crowd that while spending time with Baton Rouge Mayor-President Kip Holden earlier that day, he informed her the day would be declared Taylor Swift day.

She gave a nod to the Red Stick telling the crowd, “If I was mayor I would say you all have to admit that cats are the best animal, other than of course tigers.”

After a few costume changes, which included a light-up pink two piece dress, and a shout out to her special guests, Vance Joy and Shawn Mendes, Swift stopped the crowd to give her thanks.

“I’m so lucky that this is my job. I have friends you see on the screen, ones I talk to on Instagram, Twitter and 50,000 new friends who would come hang out with me on a Friday night in Death Valley,” she said.

Swift brought back some of her most beloved songs throughout the night, including a remix of “Love Story,” performed on a spinning platform while playing the keyboard.

Throughout the night video footage was shown of some of Swift’s closest friends, including Selena Gomez, Karlie Kloss and Lena Dunham, giving advice on how girls should be good to each other, love and to talk about their friendship with Swift.

The story behind Swift’s song “Bad Blood,” is well known by her fans, and a lot of clues indicate it was inspired by a riff between herself and Katy Perry.

The song represents an angsty part of Swift that came out in the thunderstorm sound effects, the smoke rising from the floor, the jungle gym antics of her dancers, and a dramatic fall to the ground to lie on her back and rise to her knees with the emotion and pain as she belted out the lyrics.

Later in the evening, Swift recaptured her elegant vibe by donning a dress with a long tulle skirt and sitting at a piano.

Before launching into “Wildest Dreams” she told the crowd, “There are things that can be romantic that don’t include what is typically seen as romance. I find it very romantic looking out at 50,000 of you tonight.”

After the song came a bit of an Alice in Wonderland vibe as Swift’s skirt came off to reveal a sparkling bodysuit as she sang “Out of the Woods” to the background of her dancers flying life-sized paper airplanes with sticks.

Throughout the next few performances, Swift played the keyboard, the guitar, introduced the audience to her two cats via video and came out in a Willy Wonka green dress to sing the iconic “Shake it Off.”

The song was performed on a spinning platform with dancers dressed in purple moving synchronously in the background, and came to a crescendo as real fireworks popped out from behind the stage. As Swift and her team grabbed hands and took their bows on the spinning platform, the crowd roared with applause.

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