That’s right folks U2 is here and, believe it or not (I still cannot), I was privileged enough to crack an elusive invitation to an exclusive behind the scenes look at the inner workings of the U2 360° Tour.
“The Claw”, or as it is known locally “The Prawn”, is a magnificent structure. I have never seen a stage construction like it before. It is so big that it actually begins to make the FNB Stadium, previously known as Soccer City, feel small. Let me tell you, that is no easy feat. Check out the video I created below for an indication of the true immensity of this structure.
Here are a few more interesting facts about “The Claw” and the U2 360° Tour:
The design can support up to 180 tonnes and was conceptually designed using forks over ‘dinner’ during the Vertigo Tour in 2006.
The steel structure is 28 meters tall with the center pylon reaching a height of 45 meters.
The cylindrical video screen is made up of 1 million pieces, weighs 54 tonnes, is 4300 square feet when closed and opens to a size of 14 000 square feet.
The steel structure takes four days to build with a further 12 hours to load the screen, stage and production equipment.
In addition to getting all close and personal with “The Claw” while on the ‘behind the scenes tour’, we were also extremely lucky to have the chance to speak to Jake Berry (U2 360° Tour Production Director), Paul McGuiness (U2’s Manager) and John Langford (Chief Operating Officer of Big Concerts).
In order, from left to right: Jake Berry, Paul McGuiness and John Langford.
Whether you are a fan of U2 or not, this is most certainly a show you do not want to miss. I would even go so far as to fully agree with the U2 360° Tour Production Director Jake Berry, who exclaims how being able to attend this production would be “an opportunity of a lifetime”.
360° Panorama of the FNB Stadium and U2 360 Claw
I would like to offer my sincerest thanks to 94.7 Highveld Stereo, Primedia and everyone else who contributed towards allowing me to be a part of such a privileged and incredible “behind the scenes” experience. Thank you!
Until the next time “Milieunairs”!