POPMART Leg 1: 1997, North America

Jun
17
2009

'When the real U2 show up we'll be in trouble.'

17 June 2009
'When the real U2 show up we'll be in trouble.'
Barcelona. Production rehearsals.
Having arranged to move to the band's hotel upon their arrival, I had to fit in a hotel change en route to the stadium when I got up this afternoon. The crew are staying at Mrs McGinty's boarding house just off La Rambla, so I checked out and took a cab down to the Hotel Fabulous by the Olympic Port, to be fawned over by armies of professionally obsequious staff. I only had about 30 seconds to check in and get out of there, so pretty much just threw my bags into my new room and bailed.

At the stadium we awaited the arrival of Adam and Larry, whose enthusiasm for the new production equalled that of their band mates. What astounded everyone though was that within a couple of hours of arrival, the four of them got up on the stage and played through an entire set without stopping. Astonishing! Unprecedented! I have no idea who these people are, but when the real U2 show up we'll be in trouble. During the run-through Bono took his radio mic and went right up to the top of the stadium, where (somehow) he managed to continue to sing in time, whilst adding astonished comments about how it all looked from up there.

After dark my team and I worked on the songs that required the screen to do its moves. The video content isn't quite there yet, but the way the whole thing works together is very promising. We worked till dawn and then took a runner van back to the Hotel Fabulous.

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