05/26/2011 at 07:00 PM EDT
Sparks fly, snow swirls, dancers in black cat suits swing like clappers inside huge bronze bells, and a white grand piano rises out of the floor in the new Taylor Swift
concert tour kicking off Friday night in Omaha.
"The tour is exactly how my imagination looks and I'm so excited that we get to have these entire scenes created on stage," says Swift.
When the huge red velvet curtain parts, the "Speak Now" tour takes off with "Sparks Fly" as fireworks shoot from mini-cannons, and ends with "Love Story," performed as Swift floats above the audience in an enclosed balcony while aerialists soar Cirque du Soleil style.
In between, a snowstorm envelops Swift seated at the piano for "Back to December," an Appalachian front porch sets the scene for "Our Song," and guests fill pews before Swift interrupts the bride and groom's wedding vows to "Speak Now."
"I started out in theater so you definitely see influences of that," Swift says.
Wearing a gown by Reem Acra, Swift turned the final dress rehearsal, performed in front of a paying audience on May 21, into a fundraiser for tornado victims. She raised more than than $750,000.
"It was just such a magical night knowing that every single person in the room donated to people who have lost everything," Swift said.