10 concerts Mother Nature made an unwanted cameo in 2023

Here are 10 impactful weather events in 2023 that have upstaged the performance.

Rocking out to your favorite musician is a great way to spend a few hours, but there have been several times this year Mother Nature has crashed the party. 

Here are 10 of the most impactful weather events that have upstaged the performance.

Jan. 27: Record rains in Auckland force cancelation of Elton John concert

Someone let the sun go down on Elton John’s fans in New Zealand as record rains led to widespread flooding in Auckland in late January. Floodwaters forced roads to be closed as people became trapped in their vehicles during the evening commute.

Auckland received just over 9.5 inches of rain in a day – more than the average for the entire summer. It forced Elton John to cancel his concert.

"I'm absolutely heartbroken that tonight’s show in Auckland couldn’t go ahead," he said as he took to Instagram to talk to his fans. "I was at the venue and determined to play, as the weather reports we received in advance weren’t fully conclusive. Ultimately, we had to follow the local emergency services' decision to cancel."

Feb. 11: New Zealand’s rainy sequel: Ed Sheeran battles Cyclone Gabrielle

Just two weeks after Auckland was swamped with nearly 10 inches of rain, Cyclone Gabrielle added to the rainy woes. This time, singer Ed Sheeran wasn't going to let heavy rains ruin his concert in Auckland as the storm approached.

"Will you dance in the rain with me tonight?" Sheeran asked his fans, according to the New Zealand Herald. "When I fall over, be kind to me on social media," he added.

March 30: Deadly tornado strikes concertgoers inside Illinois theater

A Friday night jam turned deadly at a theater just outside Chicago when an EF-1 tornado ripped through Belvidere, causing the roof to collapse at the Apollo Theater.

A video on social media showed rescuers rushing to help those trapped under debris. In the footage, debris can be seen piled in front of the stage at the Apollo Theatre AC. As the camera tilts up, only a few beams remain where a roof once existed.

June 22: Dozens injured as massive hail strikes Colorado’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre

In this instance, crashing the party was a bit more literal. At least 90 people were injured at Colorado’s iconic Red Rocks Amphitheatre when a thunderstorm carrying golf-ball-sized hail swept in during a Louis Tomlinson concert.

Videos from the crowd show a chaotic scene as people were struck by the hail, with victims showing off multiple welts and bruises as hail piled up on the ground and torrential rains instantly turned parts of the stadium into raging rivers. Dozens were treated at the scene, and at least seven were hospitalized. 

July 15: Jason Aldean leaves stage in Hartford, Connecticut, due to heat exhaustion

The opening weekend for country star Jason Aldean's Highway Desperado Tour was cut short when he ran offstage after suffering heat exhaustion during a show in Hartford, Connecticut.

Temperatures in Hartford during the concert were in the upper 70s and lower 80s, but with dew points in the lower to mid-70s, feels-like temperatures were in the mid-80s when factoring in the tropical humidity.

"I'm doing fine. Just one of those things. It was hot. I was playing golf all day yesterday and then got to the show, and just I think it was a combination of dehydration and just heat exhaustion," Aldean said in his video on Instagram.

Aug. 18: Rare West Coast tropical storm threat postpones festival

As Hurricane Hilary approached the Southern California coast in mid-August, the region’s first Tropical Storm Watches were issued.

California braced for heavy rains and strong winds, and organizers of the Interstellar Festival decided the risks were too great and posted a "significant risk" to their festival grounds in San Pedro, according to FOX 11 Los Angeles.

"We’re already looking ahead to the day we can welcome you onto a different dance floor, one that’s dry and ready to create unforgettable memories," festival organizers posted on their Instagram page.

Aug. 29: Extreme heat puts the brakes on 50 Cent concert in Phoenix

Phoenix endured a record stretch of heat this summer with weeks of highs over 110 degrees. That heat was still there in late August and forced 50 Cent to postpone his concert originally scheduled outside on the 29th.


"Due to extreme heat, the show tomorrow in Phoenix, AZ is being postponed. For anyone who would like a refund, please go to point of purchase for instructions. I’ll be back in Arizona soon! 116 degrees is dangerous for everyone," 50 Cent tweeted.

An Excessive Heat Warning was in effect for the region that day, according to FOX 10 Phoenix.

Sept. 2: Burning Man festival soaked by monsoon downpours, leaves tens of thousands stranded in muddy mess

Heavy monsoon rainfall caused flash flooding in rural Nevada, where tens of thousands attended the annual Burning Man festival.

The result was a muddy mess that left camps drenched and a mud-torn playa that doubled as the entrance and exit impassable for days, stranding some 73,000 festivalgoers

Nov. 10-18: Taylor Swift gets hit with bad weather Karma during South America tour

Taylor Swift’s wildly popular Eras tour hit multiple speed bumps from Mother Nature while trekking through South America. The tour hit its first weather-related snag on Nov. 10 when severe weather forced the postponement of a performance in Buenos Aires. An orange weather alert warned of up to 4 inches of rain amid hail, lightning and gusty winds.

"I love a rain show but I’m never going to endanger my fans or my fellow performers and crew," Swift wrote in the tweet.

The concert resumed a couple of days later. But a week later, tragedy struck as the tour moved to Rio de Janeiro, when not storms, but extreme heat affected the region. A fan reportedly died before the opening concert on Nov. 17, leading to the postponement of Saturday’s concert.


The heat index, which combines the effects of heat and humidity, reached staggering levels near 140 degrees in Rio de Janeiro on Friday and Saturday, according to Reuters, and the National Institute of Meteorology reported similar conditions had occurred for much of the week.

Swift usually just shakes off rainy weather during her concerts. In May, she kept singing through downpours at both Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tennessee and Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts.

Dec. 17: Inflatable bear puts on air show during extreme winds at Argentina festival

Just a month after Taylor Swift’s adventures with weather in Buenos Aires, severe weather struck again in the Brazilian town — this time at their Fiesta Bresh.

Extreme winds struck the area as a line of thunderstorms moved through around 4 a.m., tearing apart one of the performance stages and sending the crowd running in panic as a giant inflatable pink bear that had been part of the stage decorations went airborne.

Local media reported 15 people were injured in the chaos.

Buenos Aires’ Ministro Pistarini International Airport reported a gust of 54 mph while Jorge Newbery Airport recorded a gust of 60 mph at the time.