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Voices: Adele was wrong to tell her security to stop hassling a superfan – have we completely forgotten our manners?

I’m not sure how common an experience this is for people, but I get really anxious before I go to a live show. It doesn’t matter if it’s the Eras tour or a church panto production of Aladdin, I spend at least 24 hours sweating like I’ll be the one expected to perform.

Then when I get there I remember: oh yeah, this is the one place in the world where nobody is going to be looking at me. I can just melt into the crowd, cheer when it’s time to cheer – even cry when it’s time to cry, if it’s that kind of show – and nobody is going to care. It’s cathartic.

Apparently, not everybody sees it that way, though. Apparently, some people find themselves watching their favourite performer or show and think to themselves: “This is it. This is my moment. This is the time to draw as much attention to myself as possible, at this event that cost everybody $500 a ticket”.

You’ve probably seen the video by now of the Adele fan being hassled by security guards for being “too enthusiastic” at a Vegas show. The interference became so noticeable that Adele stopped the show in the middle of a song and told security to back off, asking the guards: “Why are you bothering him? Can you leave him alone, please? They won’t bother you anymore, darling. You enjoy the show”.

She then apologised to the crowd, saying: “Sorry, guys. He’s been bothered the whole show by security and other people sitting behind him. He’s here to have fun. All of you are here to have fun”.

It was a sweet gesture. Adele is great. I will not deny that Adele is great, that is not the purpose of this article.

But also… have you seen the video? The guy looks like he has a severe Rolling in the Deep allergy. He looks like a Manchurian candidate whose trigger phrase is “sometimes it lasts in love, but sometimes it hurts instead”. I’d be freaked out if I was working security too.

Not only that, but the existence of the video itself is an issue. This guy wasn’t just “enjoying the show”; he was filming a TikTok. He was filming himself having the biggest and most obnoxious reaction possible for the sake of his followers. He might have been having the time of his life, but at least some small part of the way he was carrying on was a performance. It’s like going to Hamilton and then putting on your own little production of Rent in the aisle.

Look, I get it. We’ve all seen the “Dancing in the Dark” music video. We all want to be Courteney Cox.

But there’s a time and a place for being excessively weird. Yes, even when it comes to concerts. You can see pretty clearly in the background that whatever this guy was doing was simply not the vibe that night. It was more of a polite clapping affair, and this guy was going full Coachella.

I also don’t love that Adele chastised her security – the people who are supposed to keep her safe – in front of hundreds of people at a time when the news is full of rowdy fans getting into fights, and even attacking performers.

Just this past Saturday, four theatregoers got kicked out of a production of Grease in London for abusing members of staff. Not to mention the fact that the new in-vogue thing seems to be hurling projectiles at the stage, as was the case this July when somebody threw a phone at Drake’s head mid-concert.

Look, nobody can tell you how to enjoy yourself. But even the liveliest performances have rules and etiquette. You don’t jump the rail at a wrestling show, you don’t start a mosh pit at a One Direction concert, and you don’t act erratic and obnoxious in a situation that doesn’t call for it.

Fair play to Adele for trying to protect the guy, but in doing so she’s undermined the people who are looking out for her. Sure, this time it’s just some clout-chasing internet z-lister, but next time it could be something that actually requires intervention.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have tickets to Hamilton. I can’t wait to sing along to all my favourite songs.