Rain started pouring as Allison Coward and her friends camped outside the Kia Forum to be some of the first people to obtain wristbands for a Harry Styles concert. Luckily, most fans came prepared.
“A lot of people are very prepared for weather and things like that,” said Allison Coward, Harry Styles fan and senior Psychology student at LMU. “People will bring tents.”
Global superstar Harry Styles has been on a roll this year with his 83-date Love on Tour after releasing his third album, Harry’s House, in the spring, along with his hit single, “As It Was.” This massive international tour is visiting 22 countries total, with 44 of the shows in North America.
In Inglewood, Styles was in the middle of a 15-date residency at the Kia Forum until he fell ill with the flu. Initially postponing only his November 4 show to November 6, Styles sadly had to postpone his November 5, 6, and 7 shows to January and resumed the rest of his shows on November 9 as planned. In a social media post, the superstar was very apologetic.
Nevertheless, the Harry Styles fandom is going all out for this tour — even when it’s raining.
Many fans are going above and beyond to get the full experience, even if it means camping outside the Forum all day to get a wristband for the pit or for a box office ticket. This is what some people like to call camping culture.
“There’s different kinds of camping,” said Coward. “You could either camp for the box office, meaning you camp out in the box office line to get a ticket, or people will camp out for the pit.”
According to Coward, who attended the October 23 and November 2 shows, these lines start as early as a few days before the actual concert. For the pit line, they started handing out wristbands at 9 a.m. That wristband gives you a specific spot in line for later that night. So, if you’re first in line, you’re the first one to enter the venue and secure whatever spot you want in the pit.
“People [also] tend to be pretty respectful of, say, like, you’re with friends, your friends save the spot, and you go to the bathroom, do whatever,” said Coward.
Because of how amazing of a show Styles puts on, some big fans attended multiple nights for the excitement and for that adrenaline rush from seeing someone they idolize in person, standing just feet away from them.
“He puts on such a really good show that’s engaging with the whole audience and each show can be slightly different for you, especially if you’re in the pit,” said Coward. “For people who really want that interaction with him and want to be close, it’s a really cool experience to be like 3 feet away from your favorite artist. So I think it’s worth it.”
Anna Lynn, LMU sophomore Political Science student and fan of Styles, attended three of Harry’s shows. Arriving as early as 10 p.m. the night before to get in line and spending 20 hours total in chilly weather outside the Forum, Lynn slept on the sidewalk with her friends and was running on caffeine and almost no sleep by the time she got into the venue — all to get a good view of Styles.
“It was so uncomfortable,” said Lynn. “I got like two hours of sleep. [That part] was not fun.”
But she got the best view in the house.
“We got barricade,” said Lynn, meaning she and her friends grabbed a spot right at the front.
Lynn added that it was worth all the trouble and sleep deprivation to see someone she has been a fan of since she was little, only a few feet away. Concert camping can even be an opportunity to make friends with fellow fans who are camping, too, for all those hours.
“The waiting is kind of a good experience,” said Lynn. “Because even if you’re just becoming friends with them for 20 hours, that’s still someone. And maybe that’s your chance to meet your best friend.”
Photos taken by Anna Lynn.