It’s a good time to be fast. The 33-year-old singer is in the midst of her biggest ever stadium tour — with a three-hour 40-song set spanning all eras of her career. Since 2019, she has released four albums and two re-releases, including her beloved 2010 album Speak Now.
However, Canadian fans of Taylor Swift are not very happy. The Eras Tour, which kicked off in March, includes more than 100 shows through summer 2024 in the United States, Mexico, Europe, Asia, Australia and Brazil. But, at least for now, Swift has no plans to play in Canada. Did you forget about the existence of the country?
The apparent disdain inspired Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to appeal to Swift personally. After announcing 14 more shows next year in the UK and Europe, Trudeau popped in on her Twitter responses, asking her to reconsider the schedule.
“It’s me hi,” Trudeau wrote, referring to Swift’s “Ante Hero”. “I know some places in Canada would love to host you. So don’t make this summer another rough one. We hope to see you soon.”
Trudeau appears to speak for the many other Swifties who feel exiled in the North, and wonder why they can’t have great experiences.
“It’s devastating,” said Leila Title, 33, a marketing director in Toronto. Disappointment is the best way to describe it.
Initially, Title envisioned that Swift would include Canadian dates along the international tour. And when offers were announced for Mexico and South America, with nothing planned north of the US border, she began to worry that this would fail.
Of a Canadian tour, she said, “I still think it’s possible. I always have to think it’s possible.” But it has become less likely.
Another Toronto resident, Jackie Engelberg, was hoping to see Swift at one of her shows in New York in May 2023, her “only option” without any stops in Canada. But despite Engelberg’s best efforts — “fighting Ticketmaster bots, fighting resale sites” — she couldn’t find an affordable ticket.
So, like Title, Engelberg thought he’d wait for the Canadian tour to be announced.
“Every other tour she’s done, even just in the stadium, at least there were Canadian dates listed,” Engelberg said. But when the chance for a Canadian ad came and went, she worried about missing out on Taylor Swift’s run — which would have been a first for longtime fans.
“Obviously I’m very disappointed, and so are all my fellow Swifties in Canada,” Engelberg said.
I was surprised to see small cities like Warsaw picked up for a season of three shows, while Toronto – the fourth largest city in North America – was passed over.
“Given our city’s huge population and all the fans here, I’m sure Taylor will sell out many more stadiums,” Engelberg said.
She still hasn’t told us why. Neither Swift nor her team gave a reason, and her ratings company did not respond to the BBC’s inquiries.
Some have speculated that it may be due to the size of the place. Canada’s largest arena, Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton, Alberta, holds just over 56,300 fans. That’s a fraction of the capacity of places like Wembley, London – 90,000 – or MetLife, New Jersey – 82,500.
But that doesn’t mean that Swift avoids all smaller places. She will attend two concerts at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, which has a capacity of 50,000, and one night at the Ernst Abel Stadium, in Vienna, which has a capacity of just under 51,000.
Others wonder if this is twice the Canadian dollar compared to the US dollar – the exchange rate is now about 1.33 Canadian dollars per US dollar.
But that didn’t stop other major artists, including Beyoncé and Ed Sheeran, from performing in Canada.
For now, at least, Swift’s silence has Canadian fans worried.
“All I want is for Taylor to come over here,” Title said. “And I would go all over the country.”
“Prone to fits of apathy. Problem solver. Twitter buff. Wannabe music advocate.”