U2 To Join Oprah Specials

U2 is tipped to join the A-list celebrities appearing on the Oprah Winfrey television specials downunder, according to The Australian newspaper.

The shows will be filmed at the Sydney Opera House Dec. 14, the first at 10 a.m. and the second at 5 p.m.

U2 is performing at ANZ Stadium in Sydney that night as part of a tour through Live Nation Australia and Michael Coppel Presents.

U2's Monster 2nd Downunder Show

Last night two of pop music’s superpowers came together for a pulsating night at Docklands.

Just over 60,000 fans crammed into an expanded-capacity Etihad Stadium to witness U2 360, the Irish superstar band’s bold achievement in stadium rock.

But before Bono and co landed, the American hip-hop superstar Jay-Z was entrusted with opening the monster double-bill.

He provided U2 with a winning mix of pop-cultural prestige and commercial supremacy few acts could, and he undoubtedly widened the night’s demographic. His wife, singer-actress Beyonce, however, was not to be seen.

Jay-Z also delivered pop hits, none better than last year’s epic Empire State of Mind, which drew the night’s first big singalong.

Still, much of his set was a little jarring for this rock-loving crowd and last night was unequivocally about U2.

It’s not difficult to get caught up in the logistics of the U2 production - the ”claw” is 50 metres high and carries 590 tonnes of equipment. But the stage, while vast, feels uncluttered and gives the band access to the crowd on all sides.

Almost miraculously, U2 delivers a sense of intimacy.

The sight of the four mates from Dublin, who have endured for more than 30 years together, entering the packed stadium by walking through the crowd as David Bowie’s Space Oddity blasts out is genuinely thrilling. It’s a nod of gratitude to fans, an acknowledgment that the quartet and their followers have stuck tight for so long.

Yet Bono was the irrepressible star last night. He used the elongated catwalks to strut, shadow box and spider dance through early parts of the set.

The U2 classics - With or Without You, I Will Follow, Where the Streets Have No Name, Sunday Bloody Sunday, Beautiful Day and One - were delivered in elaborate fashion.

Recent tracks Get On Your Boots and Magnificent were helped in part by Bono namechecking in the intro St Kilda, Richmond and Fitzroy. The gesture to Melbourne was lapped up.

City of Blinding Lights and Vertigo were also given fresh energy.

Songs regularly segued into others in almost mash-up style. Bad borrowed from All I Want Is You. And even the rain held off despite dire forecasts.

As for the sound, it was excellent to fair depending on where you were in the stadium.

”We’ve been doing this a while,” Bono said. ”But we’re still figuring out so much about music … Keep coming to see us, we’re still pilgrims.”

He then spoke of a strong connection the band has with Melbourne and launched into I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For.

The band also played two new, unreleased tracks.

Both were strident efforts demonstrating that these rock veterans retain their hunger.

Bono says financial woes hurting AIDS fight

U2 TOUR FANS 360 Show SYDNEY (Reuters) - Financial tough times in developed economies are undercutting efforts to stop the global spread of AIDS, U2 lead singer Bono said on Tuesday.

“Times are hard in the Western world,” the Irish rock star and campaigner told Reuters after launching World Aids Day, marked around the world on December 1, at Sydney’s Opera House.

Bono said agencies established to arrest acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) “were fighting hard for funding” nearly three decades after the disease was first diagnosed.

He added that more money was needed to meet a target set by the Global Fund to eliminate the transmission of HIV from pregnant mothers to their unborn children by 2015.

According to the United Nations children’s fund UNICEF, over a thousand babies are born each day in Africa with HIV and about half of the HIV-positive women in Africa do not get the drugs they need to prevent transmission of the virus to their babies.

“In recessionary times, people have to tell their politicians this is important to them,” Bono said.

An estimated 33.3 million people worldwide had the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes AIDS in 2009, according to the latest figures issued by UNAIDS. There were 26.2 million in 1999.

There is no cure and no commercially available vaccine but combinations of drugs called antiretrovirals can keep patients healthy. However, the virus stays in the body forever and can reactivate if people stop taking the drugs.

“Some people think that the pandemic is on its way out and it’s job done,” Bono said. “It is really not so.”

(Reporting by James Regan, editing by Mike Collett-White and Paul Casciato)



Bono Comments on PM AU World Aids Day

THE rock singer and activist Bono took some time out from his tour schedule to meet the Foreign Minister, Kevin Rudd, at the Sydney Opera House yesterday.

The pair had a 45-minute meeting with the co-chairmen of Make Poverty History, Andrew Hewett and Tim Costello, where they discussed Australia’s aid program and the challenge of global development.

A spokesman for Mr Rudd said Bono praised Australia’s bipartisan support to reduce poverty globally.



U2 fans ticket warning

Fans may be refused entry or fined if they buy unauthorised tickets for the band’s upcoming Brisbane concerts.

Suncorp Stadium general manager Alan Graham said the venue was aware of people paying “excessively inflated prices” for tickets to the December shows.

Tickets purchased through unofficial outlets such as Red Circle, www.worldticketshop.com and www.ticketfinders.com.au could be cancelled, he said.

Ticket scalpers and their customers can risk fines of up to $2000.

“If people do deal with these unscrupulous operators there is a possibility that they may never receive tickets and there is no guarantees if they do that the tickets purchased will be valid entry into the venue,” Mr Graham said.

“The promoter is quite within their rights, if they believe scalping has been involved, to cancel the barcodes if they know which tickets are involved in any scalping.”

Mr Graham said fans should purchase their tickets through official venue Ticketek to avoid disappointment.

“[Offending] sites are offering prices way over the face value and we know from the Andre Rieu concert a couple of years that people purchased tickets through these outlets and the tickets never arrived,” he said.

U2’s Wednesday December 8 show rapidly sold out last Friday, prompting the announcement of a second show for December 9.



Thanks Vienna, On to Athens

 

Today’s show marks the only show to be performed in Austria. Vienna was a bit cold as some fans tweeted earlier today. This show was to be on the 2009 tour but due to a scheduling conflict was not able to happen.  The crew warmed up and had a pretty long sound check that included City of Blinding Lights, Vertigo and Moment of Surrender.  So this was interesting, the press had published the setlist thinking that was the “current” list, however just before the show started a new set list appeared. The new song “Every Breaking Wave” was played again, this being the second time. The new set seems to be working well, starting the show off with Beautiful Day gets the crowd off and running. So far reviews are coming very postive and upbeat. Bring back Ultra Violet has been a crowd pleaser. The boys move on to Athens.

 

U2 360° To End Year Down Under

In the middle of the night, as the U2 slept in their beds dreaming of the bands arrrival to another city. A update was placed for all to dream about. Yes we have an offical tour annoucement.

Tour Dates announced for Australia and New Zealand: U2360° will visit Auckland, Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, and include  U2’s first Perth date since Popmart in 1998. 

‘U2 has always been at their best when surrounded by their audience, and this extraordinary production makes that happen in stadiums,’ says U2’s manager Paul McGuinness. ‘It was important to the band that we were able to bring the whole 360°  production to Australia and New Zealand so fans could experience the latest of U2’s legendary productions.’

The U2360° Tour kicked off again in Turin, Italy this month and will visit 17 cities, including Moscow and Istanbul, before finishing at the Olympic Stadium in Rome on 8th October. By the time it reaches New Zealand and Australia, U2360° will have been seen by over 4 million fans.

With a cylindrical video system of interlocking LED panels, and a steel structure rising 150 feet from the floor over a massive stage with rotating bridges, the band has truly created an intimate  experience for concert goers. Long-time U2 Show Director Willie Williams has worked again with architect Mark Fisher (ZooTV, PopMart, Elevation and Vertigo), to create an innovative 360 design, which affords an unobstructed view for the audience.

‘To have an in-the-round transportable stadium production is something that the touring industry has been trying to figure out for some time. The extra capacity U2 360° gives us means that there are a large number, several thousand in fact, of low priced tickets at every show’, said U2 tour producer/promoter Arthur Fogel, CEO of Live Nation Global Touring.

 In keeping with the concept that this tour is more about a unique staging configuration with excellent sight-lines tickets in all 5 cities will be available starting at $39.90 with general admission floor tickets available at $99.90. Additional reserved seat tickets also available starting at $99.90.

 Tickets for the U2 performances in Australia and New Zealand will go on sale Friday, September 3rd at all usual outlets. U2.com subscribers will be able to buy tickets ahead of the public on-sale. 

Australia & New Zealand Tour Dates 2009

November 25 Auckland, NZ    Mt. Smart Stadium 
December 01 Melbourne, AU  Etihad Stadium 
December 08 Brisbane, AU Suncorp Stadium
December 13 Sydney, AU ANZ Stadium
December 18 Perth, AU  Subiaco Oval 

U2 Goes Downunder !

Ticketmaster Australia 2010

RISH supergroup U2 are returning to Australia for a national tour. The band have announced their tour dates, including a stadium show in Sydney on December 13. The concert, to be held at ANZ Stadium, will mark the return of the band to Sydney after four years.

The band will begin their 360° Tour in New Zealand on November25, before travelling to Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney and Perth.

Tickets go on sale on September 3 - with promoters Michael Coppel and Live Nation Touring expecting enormous demand.

Although only one show has been announced for Sydney, it is highly likely tour dates will be extended.

Rumours about U2’s return to Australia have been swirling for months. The tour announcement is an early Christmas present for many of the band’s loyal Australian fans, who feared frontman Bono’s back injury earlier in the year might have affected plans for a trip Down Under.

The lead singer had emergency spinal surgery in May, which forced the band to postpone the US leg of their world tour, plus major performances including headlining the Glastonbury Festival in England.

U2 returned to touring this month, with concerts in Europe.

Bono said he was ”fighting fit” and thanked fans, and his bandmates, for their patience.

The U2 show, which features an innovative in-the-round experience for fans, also has a range of cheap tickets for Australian concert-goers.

The ”sight-lines” seats start from $39.90 a ticket, with general standing and stadium seats priced at $99.90.

U2’s manager Paul McGuinness said the band were keen for Australian fans to see the production.

”It was important to the band that we were able to bring the whole 360° production to Australia and New Zealand so fans could experience the latest of U2’s legendary productions,” he said.

More than 4 million fans will have seen U2’s 360° Tour worldwide by the time they arrive in Australia.

A source close to the tour has revealed U2 are also considering leaving their enormous set - a three-pronged alien-like tower - in Australia as a tourist attraction, at the end of the tour.

”They thought it was a great idea,” said the source. ”Rather than shipping it all back on a plane, it could become a local attraction.”

360° tour to Australia in December

The Music Network said the band will officially confirm the news we’ve all been waiting for when they announce new dates of their cancelled US tour.

Bono will be back on stage in a few weeks. This comes directly from Paul McGuinness, U2’s manager. Bono who is 50 had been operated on after becoming temporarily paralysed. By now you know this forced the cancelation of the North American tour as well as the headline slot at Glastonbury.

“He’s making a full recovery. The doctors told me he’s going to be fine. It was serious surgery but we expect him to make a full recovery. He’s pretty fit.” Said Paul during a recent interview.

McGuinness said there was no reason to believe the tour’s massive stage production had anything to do with the singer’s injury.

“Rescheduling the American leg is quite difficult because it is an outdoor show; we can’t do it in the winter because it’s the northern hemisphere.

“So what we’re doing now is trying to seek availability of the buildings that we had already pretty much sold-out, so we’re getting availabilities and routing a coherent tour for next summer in the U.S. and Canada. We’ve nearly done it so I hope we’ll be able to announce that shortly.”

McGuinness insisted the rest of the band hasn’t been enjoying an impromptu holiday while Bono recovers.

U2 2011 Australia Tour

U2 will tour Australia in 2011, leaving its concert stage behind as a gift.

Mark Fisher, who designed the stage, inadvertently announced the band's plan to visit Australia.

Fisher has built three super-structures for U2's 360 Tour.

"My vision . . . is we will turn them into permanent concert pavilions and leave them around the world," he said.

"For example, we will finish one part of the tour in Australia and another in South America."

Mr Fisher said U2 would donate the stages, which hold 180 tonnes of equipment.

U2's Australian tour promoter, Michael Coppel, said no local tour dates were confirmed.

But industry sources said U2 would perform in Australia in 2011.

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