U2’s Rescheduled Paris Shows ‘A Challenge’ That Ended With a ‘Great Experience’ Says Live Nation Exec
U2 completed the rescheduled Paris dates for the Innocence + Experience tour last night, ending the band’s sold-out touring activity for 2015 on an upbeat note in a city victimized by terrorist attacks less than a month prior.
The band had already played two of the four show booked at the AccorHotels (formerly Bercy) Arena when terrorists attacked the Bataclan concert hall during an Eagles Of Death Metal show on Nov. 13, among other sites. U2 had been scheduled to complete the Paris run Nov. 14 (with a live HBO telecast) and Nov. 15, before heading to Ireland to wrap the tour, originally scheduled to end in Dublin on Nov. 28. Those shows were postponed in the wake of the attacks.
Efforts for the rescheduling began soon after the band’s Dec. 14-15 shows were lost, “because the band really wanted to come back and make good on the two postponed shows,” tour producer Arthur Fogel, chairman of Live Nation’s Global Touring division, tells Billboard. “As it turned out, the only two days possible were Dec. 6-7, everything else was booked up at the arena.”
Logistically, delaying the end of the tour by more than a week “was a challenge,” Fogel admits, as the scores of personnel and massive amount of gear involved had all been scheduled to scatter after the Dublin shows. “Obviously we figured it out, and everybody was able to stay together to complete the shows. It was something the band really felt was important to do, as we all did, and it ended up working out well for the wrap of the tour for this year.”
U2, a band seemingly built for big emotional moments, rose to the occasion in Paris, last night bringing Eagles Of Death Metal to the stage in dramatic fashion. Fogel, promoter/producer of all of the band’s tours since PopMart in 1997-’98, calls U2 “a special band, special people, and they do rise to the occasion. They have an incredible ability to capture the moment, the mood, and it’s pretty inspirational, I have to say.”
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