Seeing Styles in style: My experience at Madison Square Garden


Emily Rice

Harry Styles singing “Sign of the Times” during Night 8 of his residency at MSG.

by Emily Rice, Managing Editor

With sold out shows almost every night, Harry Styles is continuing his world tour throughout the United States and Europe. Starting Saturday, August 20, Styles launched his 15-show residency performing in Madison Square Garden (MSG) in New York City after dropping his new album, “Harry’s House,” on May 20. 

Fans began their fight for tickets beginning May 26. Tickets were very difficult to get, and it took a lot of patience to get them. Tickets sold rapidly when all of Styles’ fans were trying to get them at once. Within the first few minutes, almost the whole arena was sold out. Before the general ticket sales began, some “verified” fans got picked for early admission.

I was fortunate enough to get selected for early admission, but sadly, when the presale began, my sister Olivia and I were not fast enough.

We nearly lost hope but knew there was still a chance we could get them when the public admission began. 

My sister and her boyfriend worked together to get us tickets with two computers open– one on my account and one on hers. There were only two tickets left in the entire arena! They happened to be right next to each other, and we got them! We got seats in section 106.

My sister and her boyfriend live in Chelsea, New York, so having somewhere to stay in New York would not be a problem. My parents agreed to allow me to ride a train by myself from BWI to New York City, which is a great alternative to driving and is super easy.

My planning for the concert began with my outfit. During Coachella this year, Styles wore an outfit with his initials on the backside of his pants, which inspired what I wanted to wear. I bought white jeans and started painting them to prepare my outfit. 

The pants I decorated for the concert. (Emily Rice)

On Thursday, September 1, my mom picked me up from school, and we made our way to BWI. I got on the train around 2:40 p.m., and  I sat and watched movies for 3 hours before I arrived at  New York Penn Station. My sister picked me up from the train station, and from that point we were mostly preparing for the concert. 

The morning of the concert, the merchandise stand in MSG opened early. There were many different designs available, and we were able to purchase some of the merchandise customized for the new album. 

The merchandise stand inside of MSG. (Olivia Rice)

From there, we headed back to her apartment and began getting ready to see Styles live! His fans always dress similar to how he dresses on stage, which is often described as disco/70’s chic outfits. Fans often wear feather boas, showing that they are ready to dance and sing the night away. 

Styles’ fans clogged the streets of New York City and the feathers from their boas littered behind them. 

The feathers from everyone’s boas gathering on the streets. (Olivia Rice)

Olivia and I decorated our eyes with gems, which matched our outfits. 

Fans often camp outside of the stadium when they have mosh pit tickets. Some fans even camp for days and sleep on the streets waiting to get their wristbands for the pit. These dedicated fans are typically very close to the stage and can see Styles perfectly, but that is something my sister and I did not have to worry about because we already had seats. 

Doors to the stadium opened at 7 p.m. and Styles came on stage at 9. In those two hours, fans have time to walk around the stadium and get refreshments. At 8 p.m., the opening act, Blood Orange, performed and played a few of their songs while the crowd cheered them on. 

The Love on Tour sign outside of MSG before we went inside. (Olivia Rice)

We took pictures in front of the stadium and continued inside. I did not realize how close we would be to the stage until we found our seats. As the concert began, fans sang and danced along to Styles on stage.

Styles played most of “Harry’s House” and a few songs from his other albums “Fine Line” and “Harry Styles.” He also performed “What Makes You Beautiful” by his previous band,  One Direction. 

Styles occasionally performs unreleased songs at his concerts. During the encore section of the concert, the band went silent for a few seconds and began to play “Medicine.” Fans went crazy and everyone sang along. I was exhilarated to finally hear this song live after years of being a fan of Styles. 

Although I have seen Styles perform once before, this experience was unreal for me. The concert was about an hour and forty minutes long, but I wish it could have been longer. After the show, we left MSG and started walking home. Another fan was riding home on the back of someone’s bike and was listening to one of Styles’ songs, “As It Was.” This song was the first to be released on “Harry’s House.” She pointed to my sister and I, and we sang along with her while she was stopped at a red light and we were waiting to cross the street. It was such a cool experience and I loved every second of it. 

The Love on Tour dates for 2022. (HSHQ)

I took so many videos during the concert and watched them back afterwards. 

Fans of Styles love seeing him live. Seeing him in real life is so different than always seeing him on a screen. I wish everyone could experience what it is like to see Styles live.

Styles’ last night in NYC was September 21. Madison Square garden made him a banner with his name and amount of shows. East Coast fans will miss Styles as he continues his tour in other parts of the country.