'Full Dress Rehearsal'
Turin. Production rehearsals.
In a moment of inspiration I'd suggested that we do our full dress rehearsal tonight. This means we'll have time to fix things if necessary and is also something of a safety measure in that Bono won't have to do a full run through tomorrow. He seems to be doing very well in his post-operation return to stage, but he hasn't yet gone at it for two hours in one uninterrupted stretch.
All today's timings were earlier than they have been this week to accommodate the time needed for a full run-through, so there was a faint reminder of what it feels like to actually do a show. We ran through the whole show with the band in stage gear, and made it without stopping which was enormously encouraging.
Both North Star and Glastonbury were included and the lunatic opening with The Return of the Stingray Guitar. We ended up placing Miss Sarajevo in the Unknown Caller slot and I'm delighted with the 'Questions' audio-visual piece that links it to Until the End of the World. Hold Me, Thrill Me replaced Ultraviolet as the encore opener, which will no doubt cause apoplectic consternation on the U2 fan sites, but for at least the first show of a new year this feels like the right thing to do.
We had our post-mortem afterwards, which was largely positive though there remain a lot of fixes to make tomorrow. Bono was exhausted but he is clearly going to be able to do this which is a great relief all round. There are lots of technical things to sort out still, but I think we're in as good a shape as we can be. I programmed late with my team, but I think that's it now. Unless anything startling happens tomorrow, we're good to go. Might even manage an early night.