Hayley Williams Dresses as Chucky for Paramore’s L.A. Halloween Show, Brings Fans on Stage for ‘Misery Business’

Though Paramore had to postpone its Los Angeles show at the Wiltern due to COVID-19, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise: The concert was rescheduled to Halloween, prompting fans and band members alike to sport their spooky best.

Frontwoman Hayley Williams opted to dress as horror icon Chucky, pairing denim overalls with a striped sweater and red Converse, and even going the extra mile with prosthetic scar makeup. Though at first it was almost impossible to discern what the other six touring band members were meant to be, Williams soon went around to introduce them and explain their costumes.

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Guitarist Brian Robert Jones was dressed as a Staples employee, keyboardist Logan McKenzie was clad in orange as a Jack-O-Lantern, percussionist Joseph Mullen cosplayed as Paul Stanley of KISS, and bassist Joey Heller and lead guitarist Taylor York just came as they were (though York did attempt to rock a bright orange wig for the first few songs). Drummer Zac Farro wore a yellow ensemble, which Williams revealed was meant to symbolize cheese: “She’s Chucky! I’m cheese!” Farro said. “It doesn’t really make sense, but we love it.”

Paramore
Paramore

The Halloween spirit was palpable throughout Paramore’s set, with Williams saying early on, after playing “This Is Why,” “Brick by Boring Brick” and “Decode”: “Happy fucking Halloween! I wish this was what L.A. looked like everyday.” She took time to acknowledge several audience costumes in between songs, pointing out fans dressed as The Mask, Sally from “The Nightmare Before Christmas” and even someone dressed as drummer Farro.

Fan interaction was an integral part of the concert, and perhaps what makes Paramore shows so special — besides Williams’ never-faltering powerhouse vocals and the band’s tight musicality. The prime example of this was during “Misery Business” — a song once deemed problematic enough that the band announced the intention to retire the number in 2018, before officially reclaiming it for this tour — when Williams brought up two elated fans from the crowd to help her sing the song’s last chorus. Before selecting the lucky fans, Williams dedicated the song “to the sexists, to the misogynists, to all the internalized misogyny living within us,” letting the crowd do much of the singing of lyrics that she admitted in a 2015 blog post she wrote “from a very narrow-minded perspective.”

Once the two fans, named Bri and Kayla, took the stage and the microphones, it was as if the entire audience was now on stage with them. The pure energy of their excitement seemed to make the venue itself sway in song, and Williams fell on the floor in a “we’re not worthy”-style praise before exiting the stage. Though the show could have ended right there with everyone content, the band reemerged for an encore of “Into You” and “Hard Times,” capping off a delightfully emo Halloween.

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