23 Feb 2024

Storms and lightning cause havoc, delay Taylor Swift's first Sydney show for The Eras Tour

9:28 pm on 23 February 2024
Fans of US singer Taylor Swift, also known as a Swifties, shelter from the rain as they arrive for Swift's concert in Sydney on February 23, 2024. (Photo by DAVID GRAY / AFP)

Fans of US singer Taylor Swift, also known as a Swifties, shelter from the rain as they arrive for Swift's concert in Sydney on 23 February, 2024. Photo: David Gray / AFP

Chaos has hit tonight's Taylor Swift concert at Sydney's Olympic Park with thousands of fans being evacuated after lightning strikes near the venue.

Fans have also been notified that the start time for Taylor's Swift's first of four sold-out shows in the Harbour City has been delayed.

"The floor and lower bowl are currently being evacuated due to lightning strikes nearby the stadium," organisers posted on The Eras Tour page on X, formerly Twitter.

"Please stay safe, sheltered and follow venue screens until further notice."

Fans inside the venue have told the ABC that no one was being allowed to enter rows one to 20.

Numerous bands of storms were visible on radar sweeping across Sydney early in the evening, and further storms are predicted later tonight.

A force of sequins as far as the eye could see is still swarming its way to the stadium from the nearby train station, car parks and drop-off points.

Some thanked the bemused bus drivers who got them there by gifting them a bracelet, which are beaded with lyrics from Taylor Swift songs, or in-jokes between fans.

The NSW Police are also getting in on the act, trading bracelets with fans and complimenting them on their outfits.

The number 13, Swift's favourite, adorns the hands of many of her fans along with colourful friendship bracelets up to their elbows.

Swift's songs are known for creating girlhood amongst adolescent fans, but people of all ages have turned out to see their idol.

Workers on the streets surrounding the precinct, blasted the multi-Grammy award winner's hits, as did a live acoustic band.

Top on her fans' minds is tonight's set list - what will be her opening numbers? And more importantly, what will be her surprise songs?

Brisbane Swiftie, Sam L'Lachi was lucky enough to see the Melbourne show, but said he could not wait for tonight.

"I'm very excited, I haven't seen her before The Eras Tour, I'm definitely excited to see her," he said.

"I'm definitely looking forward to the secret songs, I don't know what they'll be but I'm grateful for whatever I get."

Another fan in a Reputation outfit has seen Swift six times before, but said this was a massive moment for her.

"She means everything to me ... I've grown up with her," she said.

"My whole life happened at the same time as hers."

- This story was first published on the ABC

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