Photo via Island Records
 | Music

Chappell Roan at The Hollywood Theatre

Review – Chappell Roan at The Hollywood Theatre, Vancouver, Nov 10 2023

If you’re in a good mood—Chappell Roan has music for you. If you’re going through a breakup—Chappell Roan has music for you. If you’re exploring your sexuality and identity—you get the idea. Chappell Roan’s music is bright and colourful; you can sing it in the shower, you can cry to it on your bed… and if you’re lucky, you can sing along to Roan’s music at a live performance. 

From the get go, the bar for Chappell Roan’s show was set high. Walking into the Hollywood Theatre last Friday, those of us in the audience were treated to a performance from local Vancouver drag performers. It was a great way to showcase some local talent, and set the tone for the rest of the night.

Photo via

Roan is a unique performer. The bond she seems to have with her fans is unlike many artists: for each show on this current tour. she set a theme, and encouraged her fans to dress accordingly. For the Vancouver show, the theme was Kaleidoscope. Rainbows, sequins, and glitter crowded the dance floor, to both coordinated and eclectic effect.

At one point, Roan recalled that her first ever concert was in Vancouver in 2017, on a tour where she opened for Milky Chance. Reminiscing on how much has changed since then, Roan shared that her sound has become much less angsty, and much more personal and true to herself. She treated us to a song from that era, as a way of honouring her past self, and showcasing how far she has come in the last few years. 

Attending this concert felt like a peak into a community full of love, acceptance, and joy. It seemed fitting and right when Roan informed the audience that a portion of every ticket sale was going to New York based charity For The Gworls, a collective which works to help Black transgender people with their rent, gender-affirming surgeries, and other expenses. In a way, this was a natural extension of the community feeling, and everyone in the audience seemed on board with the cause. 

For me, the highlight of this concert was the palpable, near physical energy that pierced through the night. Roan informed the audience that she wouldn’t be able to sing one of her songs, because she chose to dance instead of fit a piano on stage. Along with her band, Roan danced through nearly every song, adorned in a shiny pink bikini and a rainbow flower sash. She made a real effort to engage with the crowd, moving from one side of the stage to the other dozens of times throughout the night. 

This tour coincided with the release of Chappell Roan’s first album. A long time in the making, it features songs released from 2020 to now, and features her hit Pink Pony Club, which she closed the show with. There will certainly be a lot more of Roan to see in the future, and she has room to grow as an artist and performer. I’m excited to catch her the next time she’s in town, and see her continue to realize her potential.

Photos via



Hannah Madden-Krasnick

Hannah is a student, software developer, and writer based in Vancouver, BC. You can find her studying in a cafe as she finishes her latest degree, knitting her friends a sweater, and around town training for her next triathlon. If you see her on her phone in public, she's probably reading a book, as she considers for the dozenth time if she should buy a Kobo. The next time you see her at a concert, let her know your thoughts on eReaders, and she'll show her gratitude by sharing her glitter with you.
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