My Concert Catastrophe-How to Survive Live Concerts

By Anahi Terrazas

Edited by Natalie Grace Sipula

[4.5 minute read]

Prior to the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, concert-going was one of my favorite pastimes. I’ve been to multiple concerts over the past couple of years (my favorite arguably being the One Direction concert). One of my favorite artists is also Harry Styles, so you can imagine my excitement when I learned that he would be performing during Super Bowl weekend in Miami.

As soon as I heard he would be performing in Miami, I bought tickets—mind you, I didn’t know anyone that I could go to the concert with, so I messaged a girl that I had met at the Women’s March and added on Instagram weeks prior to the concert. It turned out that she was also going to be attending the concert and didn’t have anyone to go with, so we made a plan to meet up at the venue. The concert was approximately a 40-50 minute drive from where I was attending school prior to transferring to USC.

The concert was at 8 pm, but it was open seating, so to get a good seat you had to arrive early. I got there promptly at 5 am the day of the concert. I had driven from Parkland, Florida to Miami. The venue was built specifically for Super Bowl weekend and it was basically on an island that did not have any parking, so in order to arrive you had to park somewhere in downtown Miami and Uber to the venue (this is an important detail for later). I very excitedly arrived at Miami and by around 6:15 am I was standing in line with my friend from the Women’s March.

Standing in line outside the venue at around 6:30 am

While waiting in line, everything was seemingly normal; we made friends with the girls in line with us and chatted about how excited we were. However, when the clock hit 7:30 pm and we still weren’t allowed into the venue, I started to question what was happening. We were eventually led into the venue at around 8:30 pm, and though I was incredibly tired because I had been awake since 4 am, the rush of being able to see Harry Styles perform kept me from getting too impatient. Mark Ronson, a DJ, was the first opening act and by around 10:30 pm, Lizzo, the second opening act, started performing.

My view of the stage once inside the venue

Though I had been to many concerts before, I had never experienced the main act starting so late. After Lizzo’s performance, time passed and there was still no sign of Harry Styles getting on stage. At this point everyone in the pit started to get dehydrated because we had been standing so long without water. People started to ask security for water and question why it was almost midnight and Harry Styles had yet to perform.

View from the pit

Nevertheless, the people around me and I kept our hopes up because it was Harry Styles’ birthday the next day, so we assumed that he was waiting until midnight to perform in order to celebrate his birthday. In fact, once the clock hit 12 am fans started to sing “Happy Birthday” when suddenly, the screen in front of us flashed a message saying that the concert was canceled due to extreme weather and that we had to be evacuated.

Announcement telling concert-goers we needed to evacuate

Security guards started to herd us out of the venue, giving us trash bags to “protect ourselves” from the rain. It was midnight, and it was raining so heavily that the streets were beginning to flood. There were thousands of people trying to get a ride-share at the same time, and Uber and Lyft prices were upwards of $60 to get back to downtown Miami. My friend and I, along with countless other concert-goers, were standing in the water trying to figure out a way to get an Uber. Every single time I had someone accept my ride, they would cancel it within 5-10 minutes of accepting it. I spent almost two hours trying to get a ride back to my car—in fact, a bus caught on fire in front of my friend and I while we were waiting! Eventually, I was able to get an Uber, and luckily, I didn’t have to drive back home that night because I had a relative that lived in Miami that I was able to stay with that night. I made it to my relative’s house at around 3 am, making it a whopping 23 hours of me being awake.

So, here’s the moral of the story: concert-going is an amazing, fun activity and a really great way to meet other people! However, if you’re going to be attending any concerts anytime soon, please make sure that you are going with someone that you know or that you otherwise have some sort of emergency plan in place. Though I did not know the girl with whom I went to the concert very well, having nobody there during this concert would have made the experience much more unpleasant. Have somebody that you can call in case anything happens and always remember to bring a portable charger with you—it would be incredibly unfortunate for you to run out of battery while trying to figure out a way to get back home. Stay safe and happy concert-going!

Featured Image by alex bracken on Unsplash

Anahi is a Political Science major and a French minor. She is a sophomore and is from El Paso, Texas. She is currently involved with Trojan Herstory as a Content Creator and is an active member of Phi Alpha Delta, a pre-law organization. Anahi is a transfer student and prior to attending USC she attended Florida Atlantic University. Anahi is dedicated to political organizing and has been a part of various organizations such as Students for Bernie and the Florida Immigrant Coalition. She is also passionate about learning about other cultures and countries, and hopes to study abroad at some point during her academic career. In her free time Anahi enjoys yoga, reading, and musical theatre.