Close this search box.

Boygenius Bask in the Warm Glow of Their Adoring Fans

The Toronto stop on the trio’s tour was full of positive vibes and collective core memories.

by Daniel McIntosh

Photos by Tom Pandi

June 21, 2023

Toronto, ON

Budweiser Stage

The Boygenius trio of Phoebe Bridgers, Julien Baker, and Lucy Dacus were right at home under the lights of Toronto’s Budweiser Stage, performing for one of their largest audiences yet. 

Bridgers’ last solo show a year ago at Echo Beach erupted in mayhem as fans crowded for their queen. This time around, the sold-out audience channeled that energy into communal love and endless fervour. From the moment they launched into raucous opener “$20,” the audience made their presence felt, reciting every word to the point of drowning out the performers. 

Shortly into the show, Dacus slumped into an armchair and declared she had a concussion. She spent the majority of the show seated, shaded, and looking cool as hell while Boygenius ripped through songs from their 2023 album, the record, and self-titled EP. 

All three members took turns looking genuinely stunned throughout the evening at the amount of fan love they received. At one point, Dacus referred to the evening as a core memory, while Bridgers processed a memory of performing through strep throat at Toronto’s The Drake in 2016 (while opening for Baker, no less).

“I was really stressed and I wanted to play the show, so I go on stage, try to sing, and I just can’t.” After leaving the stage to weep in peace, she ran into Baker, ready with a hot toddy and a shoulder to cry on. “And here we are… I’m grateful to this place for bringing me that moment.”

Further core memories ensued: During “Cool About It,” the audience held up flashlights and coloured paper, coming together to form a twinkling pride flag that stopped Julien Baker in her opening notes. It was orchestrated by the Toronto Boygenius Fan Project, and the result was as heartwarming as it was awe-inspiring—and I’m sure, difficult as hell to organize.

After an initial walk off, the three friends returned for an encore, closing with a euphoric rendition of “Salt in the Wound” that put the best of their harmonies to work. With a closing flourish, Baker and Bridgers scurry over to Dacus’ chair and curl up in her lap, each planting kisses on the other. 

Despite one member nursing a concussion, Boygenius were absolutely no worse for wear, putting on a show that affirmed their collective friendship and celebrated queer connection.