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By Ludwig Hurtado
Ariana Grande's "Sweetener" tour in the 29 states will feature a voter registration initiative at each stop, making her the new superstar able to motivate viewers to the ballot box. .
The singer debuted with #thankunextgen, a song from her hit song "Thank u, next" during her show in Albany, New York, on March 18, in partnership with a non-partisan non-profit organization that collaborates with musicians to help record voters at concerts. She has also promoted the campaign on Instagram, where she is the most followed woman with 148 million followers.
Sam Hardy, a HeadCount volunteer at the Grande concert on March 20th at TD Garden in Boston, said that she had registered because she was passionate about music but that she was even more passionate about civic engagement.
Hardy, who studies political science at Fordham University, approached fans queuing to buy goods and asked if they were registered to vote.
In Massachusetts, citizens can register to vote at 16 years of age. Hardy said that she had talked to fans aged 12 and 13 only, pleased to get involved in the political process. She then asked them to make the commitment to elect the voters.
Fans who make a promise are added to the HeadCount system, which, according to their country's law, will send them an e-mail at their 16th or 18th birthday, telling them how to register to vote.
Aaron Ghitelman, Director of Communications at HeadCount, said the Grande campaign was intended to actively involve the younger generation in politics.
"You do not have to be 18 to call your elected officials. 13-year-olds can do it, "he said.
"Do not just phone your legislator. Be your legislator, "said Ghitelman, adding that the #thankunextgen campaign would also provide resource guides for more women and youth to run for office.
Grande is not the first musician to have attempted to mobilize their huge clientele. In 2016, Grammy Award winner Chance the Rapper joined the NAACP in registering voters during his concerts in the United States with a campaign called "Stay Woke And Vote".
Last year, HeadCount volunteers attended every US stop on Beyoncé And Jay-Z's "On The Run II" tour, registering fans to vote in time for the 2018 mid-term elections. pop-star Taylor Swift also broke her silence on politics about a month before this election. She also invited Instagram to support two Tennessee Democrats and encouraged her fans to sign up to vote. Vote.org reported an increase in the number of registrations, especially among young people, a few days after its publication.
"Artists want to use the platform they have to help their fans change the world," Ghitelman said.