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Taylor Swift defies curfew at Levi’s Stadium again during second Bay Area concert

The chart-topping pop sensation blew past the venue’s established 11 p.m. curfew before even reaching her encore on Saturday, July 29. Taking the stage right at 8 p.m. with a medley of prerecorded vocals spotlighting each of her albums, Swift performed a nearly 3½-hour spectacle comprising more than 40 songs.

The violation came as Swift reached the end of the acoustic portion of her show, where she traditionally plays a pair of surprise songs each night. The first was the pop ballad “Stay Stay Stay” from her 2012 album, “Red.” The second track was “All of the Girls You Loved Before,” a previously unreleased “Lover” track that Swift dropped on March 17 to celebrate the opening night of her Eras Tour the following day. It marked her first live performance of the song.

Taylor Swift performs at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara on Friday, July 28, her first return to the Bay Area since she played the same venue in 2018. 

Jessica Christian/The Chronicle

Levi’s Stadium, home to the San Francisco 49ers, has been grappling with noise-related challenges since its opening in 2014. City regulations impose strict cutoff times of 10 p.m. on weekdays and 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. However, few music superstars have adhered to these constraints. Before Swift first broke curfew during her first Eras Tour show on Friday, July 28, the Rolling Stones, U2, Coldplay, Beyoncé and Jay-Z all ignored the prescribed cutoff time. 

It is not clear what the repercussions are for breaking the rule this time around, with the primary impact seemingly being additional administrative headaches for the 49ers. When U2 broke curfew in 2017, the NFL team was slapped with a $1,000 fine by the city. 

A crowd waits in line to enter Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour on Friday, July 28.

A crowd waits in line to enter Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour on Friday, July 28.

Clara Mokri/Special to The Chronicle

Swift’s jam-packed concerts for more than 68,500 fans each night at Levi’s Stadium marked her first time back in the Bay Area since she played at the same venue in 2018 on her “Reputation” tour. 

Since then, the singer has released four new albums — 2019’s “Lover,” 2020’s “Folklore” and “Evermore,” and 2022’s “Midnights” — and three “Taylor’s Version” re-recordings of her previous works. As its title implies, the Eras Tour covers every period of Swift’s career going back to her second studio album, “Fearless,” released in 2008.

“I have missed you so much,” Swift said at one point during Saturday’s concert. “I haven’t seen you in like five years in this capacity.”

Fans arrive at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara on Friday, July 28, for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, which had a two-night stint at the venue.

Fans arrive at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara on Friday, July 28, for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, which had a two-night stint at the venue.

Jessica Christian/The Chronicle

Not only did the concerts cause noise issues, but also road closures, traffic and public transportation nightmares, with a record number of people flocking to Valley Transportation Authority light-rail trains to get to and from the shows, officials said Saturday. There was also widespread confusion over tailgating rules for the stadium. And for fans who couldn’t score tickets, there was plenty of heartbreak as they were shut out of the venue.

But it was probably worth it, with some industry insiders speculating that the Eras Tour concerts could have the biggest economic impact on the Bay Area since Super Bowl 50 in 2016.

Besides, Swift may have special privileges. Earlier in the week, Santa Clara Mayor Lisa Gillmor bestowed upon the pop superstar the honorary title of mayor of “Swiftie Clara.” Swift acknowledged the tribute by city officials on Saturday with mutual enthusiasm.

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