Ever wondered how concerts are put together? Well to start, I will never take a stadium concert for granted anymore.
One of the leading singers in the world, performed at Melbourne’s, Etihad stadium, on the 18th and 19th of March. Astonishing fans with her colourful lights display and new stage made just for her.
“It was absolutely phenomenal. Top three best concerts I’ve ever been to. She was on stage being herself,” said Paul Healey, a fan who went to one of Adele’s concerts.
To get an “absolutely phenomenal” performance it is not just a talented singer needed but also workers working hard day in and day out. One of the companies hired at Adele’s concerts was Gigpower, they are most of the workers that helped set up the international tour in Melbourne. The concert took roughly five days to set up, have Adele perform, and pack up everything.
“We started on Wednesday the 15th of march and we finished on Monday the 20th of march,” said crew manager Weasle Eicke. There were “25 production trucks on Adele,” everything from wardrobe to lighting and sound. “All the set was finished on the Friday,” “around two o’clock on that day we were pretty much show ready,” and “show call was at 7pm,” Eicke explained. What took the longest to set up was the stage itself. “It was basically a 36 hour steel build, he said.” “It was one of the most exhausting and rewarding weeks of my life, said crew worker Chloe Victoria Mostard.” “I love the challenges that come with all the work and I love getting to meet people from around the world. It’s both physically and socially rewarding.”
“No aspects of my life really suffer, except sleep,” Mostard said.
“I’ve been generally happier since starting this job, and I don’t see myself giving it up any time soon!” “I have noticed with certain touring companies, they speak down to the girls, when we are all just as capable as the boys.” “I think it’s a much more understanding and accepting career when it comes to sexism, than a lot of others,” she said.
Starting shift on Thursday morning until afternoon, over 7 hours just to set up the audience lights, and some how it had felt rather quick. The next day was over another 7 hours setting up the stage lights. “Setting up and taking down the lights! It was heavy work, but once you got into a rhythm, it was really fast paced and quick work,” said Gigpower worker, Mostard. “There were A LOT of lights.” “More than usual.” If it takes that long to set up the lights, imagine how long it takes to set up a massive stage. The reason there were so many lights was so the audience could have a fantastic lights show and see every part of the concert, because who does not want to see Adele on her 3D moving stage with a rounded digital screen. It can take a week sometimes, but it is so worth it in the end just to see some of the most talented acts perform on those massive colourful stages.
Load out call was on the 19th of March after the singer stepped off stage for her last show in Melbourne. “That started at 10pm and we were done in five hours,” said Eicke. “We were effectively three hours ahead of schedule,” “we had 208 people working as stage hands, obviously across set, automation, back-line, piro, star, barrier, video, audio, (and) lighting.” “We just basically keep going until the last trucks full and then leave the venue,” “by 10pm on Monday night there was nothing left on the ground apart from ground protection.”
I do not know much about Adele besides she has an angel like voice, cares about her son, and adores her fans. Supposedly having written ‘Hello’ and other lyrics from her songs on every small piece of white confetti, people who do not adore their fans would not spend hours of hand cramps to do that. That small gesture would have definitely put smiles on fans faces when those confetti canons went off.
It is not just Adele that puts a lot into her concerts, it is also all the workers. A roadies job can be very dangerous and tiring if people are not professional and well attentive, anything can go wrong at any stage – no pun intended. My experience in the job has been very safe and professional luckily, I am glad I have such an experienced and friendly crew to work many sweating hours with.
So next time you go to a concert, in the words of Zombieland, rule 32, “Enjoy the little things,” said Columbus.
Photo Credit: @corndogliam
Video 1 Credit: hotteawithice – YouTube
Video 2 Credit: AdeleVEVO – YouTube
Extended version of The little things at Adele’s concert
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