FRIENDS IN FANDOM
DOLLY explores the deep bonds that are formed through a mutual obsession with baben' celebs.
In boy bands we trust.
“IT’S AWESOME THAT THE STEREONATOR FANDOM IS CREATING FRIENDSHIPS.”
It’s not easy being a Belieber when your fam can’t stand Justin and it sucks being a Directioner in a squad of 1D haters (yes, such people exist! *gasp*). ’Cos when all you want to do is discuss your dream date with Jakob Delgado or comb through your Larry theories, no one will give you the time of day. So when you meet people who share your undying devotion to your idol, a friendship is formed unlike any other.
“I MET THEM BECAUSE OF IN STEREO”
Ah, the people you’ll meet when you’re waiting in a cold line at the ridiculous hour of 6am to see your king or kween perform. Because while you’re fangirling to the peeps in line beside you, you could meet a lifelong friend. Earlier this year, DOLLY put on a pop-up concert with hot boy band In Stereo, which saw Stereonators from all over Sydney descend on Luna Park to see their three main men. Among the herd of screaming fans were school friends Jorja, Rachael, Ella and their new friend Jess who they met through the Stereonator fandom. “I met them because of In Stereo,” says Jess of her squad. “When we met on that day it felt like we were already really close,” she continues. “None of my friends like In Stereo and they hate it when I talk about them, so it was so great to meet these guys.” From then on, Jess, Ella, Rachael and Jorja have been tight AF. They do everything together from sleepovers to celebrate the band’s EP release to getting their mums to take turns dropping them off at concerts, to pooling their birthday and pocket money to buy presents for the boys. Collectively, they’ve seen the band perform 28 times, met them 10 times and spent more than $300 on tickets, merchandise and gifts for the boys. For these gals, fangirling over boy bands is just another way to hang out. #squadgoals
FROM DMS TO D&MS
Thanks to social media, it’s basically impossible to be part of a fandom and not make a friend. “While we’re in line for a concert, we chat [to other fans] and get excited for the show,” says Jorja. “Then we take photos of each other and tag ourselves so that we can find each other online.” “We have a big In Stereo group chat,” Rachael continues. “We start talking [to other fans] in comments and then say, ‘hey, do you want to DM’?” When DOLLY told the boys about this, Jakob said, “It’s awesome that the Stereonator fandom is creating friendships.” Chris agreed, “It’s really cool that we can bring people together.” Ethan says they hear this from fans a lot. “Yeah, they say to us, ‘TY In Stereo for helping me find my best friend.’” The use of Insta and Twitter has meant that fangirls from other states and even other countries can get in touch to chat about their idols, which has a huge impact on some people, as Ella found. “I made friends with this girl ’cos she was like, ‘I’m really sad’, and then we started Dming and we got really close, then she met the boys and I was like ‘I’m so excited for you!’” And as for the girls’ friendship, they’re in it for the long haul. “In maths, Jorja draws pictures of Ethan that I’ve collected and I’m making a scrapbook so if they get married, I’ll give it to them,” says Ella, as she turns to Jorja. “I ship you with Ethan! At least you know I’m not going to steal him from you.” Now that’s friendship.