Excitement, Ticketmaster controversy surround Taylor Swift tour


Senior Madeline Houeland photographed by Gracie Lancaster.

Gracie Lancaster, Staff Writer

Going once, going twice, sold! Swifties and casual fans across the United States scrambled to get tickets for Taylor Swift’s Eras Stadium Tour as early as Nov. 15, 2022. The controversy and chaos surrounding ticket sales came down to one issue: the Ticketmaster monopoly. 

Prior to ticket sales, over 3.5 million users pre-registered. Demand was incredibly high, and as people attempted to buy tickets, the site crashed for many, lagged for others and overall made it impossible to buy tickets for millions of fans. Fans grew desperate for tickets, and once they were actually available, many were willing to pay ridiculously high prices. 

Tualatin High School (TuHS) senior Madeline Houeland shared her experience with purchasing tickets for the Vegas show on Mar. 25.

“Getting tickets was really really difficult. My older brother got tickets for us while I was at school. He was in the queue for a few hours, which I’m very very grateful for,” Houeland said. “We chose Vegas because I’m out of town during the Seattle show. My parents have been wanting to visit Vegas for a while, so it was a perfect opportunity for everyone.”

Taylor Swift won’t be performing in Oregon, but TuHS students who managed to get tickets are willing to go far and wide. The closest concerts to Tualatin High School will take place in Seattle in late July.

Since the first show on Mar. 17, 2023, it’s nearly impossible to scroll through social media without seeing videos and photos of the recent Taylor Swift performances. Some Swifties don’t want the set list spoiled, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult to avoid. Set lists are subject to change, but they seem to heavily feature Lover, 1989, Reputation and of course Midnights

“The set list was beautiful and wonderful and my favorite thing ever, but I’m in love with all of her songs, so I would have no complaints, no matter what. I wish she had some more Speak Now songs because it’s one of my favorite albums, but I was just happy to hear what she chose to play,” Houeland shared. “My favorite song to hear her perform was “Enchanted.” It’s my favorite song of hers of all time, and it has been since I was little. However, my favorite of her outfits was definitely Lover!”

The hype surrounding Taylor Swift’s outfits translated to the creativity in fan outfits, especially the co-ordinated aspects. At concerts, Swifties often arrive with a friendship bracelet and leave with a different one.

Houeland shared her thoughts on the friendship bracelet trend. 

“It’s kind of like a fun little tradition that Swifties have always done and I think is really cute. I saw a lot of trading at the concert.”

Long-term Swifties and recent fans alike have been able to bond over the beautiful performances Taylor Swift has been giving. Houeland continued to excitedly explain the whimsy that fans experience at concerts. 

“I loved it all so so much. My favorite part was how excited and involved the crowd was in every song; I felt like I was dancing in my room but with thousands of other people, and it was truly magical,” Houeland squealed. “I’ve been dreaming of seeing her since I was little, and it was everything I’ve always wanted.”

To those lucky enough to get tickets: congratulations! Take lots of videos and have the time of your life.