At one point in the evening, Swift slowed things down and alluded to her never-ending drama with Kardashian and rapper Kanye West. "You might be wondering why there are so many snakes everywhere, huh?" Swift asked, referring to her stage décor. "A couple of years ago, someone called me a snake on social media and it caught on. Then a lot of people were calling me a lot of things on social media and I went through some really low times for a while because of it. I went through some times when I didn't know if I was going to get to do this anymore."
"I guess this means I wanted to send a message to you guys, that if someone uses name calling to bully you on social media, and even if a lot of people jump on board with it, that doesn't have to defeat you. It can strengthen you instead," the pop star said as the audience cheered her on. "And I think something that came out of it that was good is that I learned a really important lesson that I've been telling you from the stage for about 10 years, but I never had to learn it so harshly myself, and that lesson has to do with how much you value your reputation. I think the lesson is that you shouldn't care so much if you feel misunderstood by a lot of people who don't know you, as long as you feel understood by the people who do know you, the people who will show up for you, the people who see you as a human being. So thank you, thank you, thank you for taking the time to get to know me, for seeing me as a human being."
While things with Kardashian and West remain fraught, things with former frenemy Katy Perry are much better. Before Swift's first show, Perry sent her an actual olive branch. "Hey Old Friend—I've been doing some reflecting on past miscommunications and hurt feelings between us," the American Idol judge wrote in the partially obscured letter, adding that she was "deeply sorry" and hoped to "clear the air" with Swift. It appeared Swift accepted Perry's apology, considering she shared a video of it on Instagram Stories and said, "This means so much to me."
Check out all the photos from Swift's opening night:
Swift's global tour will run through November.