Preparations are underway at Adelaide Oval ahead of the first concert for the Rolling Stones as they kick off their postponed tour.
The well-oiled machine preparing Adelaide Oval for the Rolling Stones show is hard at work in the blazing sun.
And the band’s production manager Dale Skjerseth is impressed with the “fantastic” venue where the Stones will kick off their postponed 14 On Fire Australia/New Zealand tour on Saturday.
“It’s state-of-the-art. I’ve done other shows here before and it’s vastly improved since the renovations,” he said on Wednesday during a media tour of the site.
More than 50 containers of gear and 200 people are involved in the production, which was rescheduled in March after the death of Mick Jagger’s long time girlfriend, L’Wren Scott.
Promoter Tony Cochrane said most people held onto their tickets for the only stadium show of the eight Australian gigs. The final show in Auckland will be held at Mt Smart Stadium.
About 400 extra tickets were released on Wednesday morning for the Adelaide show, which will attract about 53,000 people.
Asked which was the best seat in the house, Skjerseth replied they all were.
Pointing to areas on both sides of the huge stage, he said: “These big holes are giant video walls, the largest I have ever put up, the biggest (the Stones) have ever had.”
“The stage is also quite low. It’s only 1.9 metre-high, so you will see everything.”
The band, which last performed 14 weeks ago, will rehearse at the oval on Thursday night, no doubt attracting fans to gather outside to hear a free gig.
Preparations had become a “well-oiled machine, but we all have to get the joints moving,” Skjerseth said.
He’s been working with the Stones since their 1994 Voodoo Lounge tour and reckons nothing has really changed, with the band still putting on a great shows.
“They enjoy it. They are still doing it.”
As always, their main requirement was for everything to be flat.
“Everything has to be the way they want it for their feet,” he said.
And, as always, Skjerseth will be watching “the beginning, the middle and the end” of the show because that’s when “something is going to go wrong, just like in aeroplanes”.
Cochrane said about 11,500 tickets for the Adelaide show were sold to people interstate or overseas.
“This weekend you cannot get a hotel room for love or money in this town.”
The Rolling Stones play the following shows:
* Adelaide Oval, Oct 25
* Perth Arena, Oct 29 and Nov 1
* Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Nov 5
* Hanging Rock at Macedon, Nov 8
* Allphones Arena in Sydney, Nov 12
* Hope Estate in the Hunter Valley, Nov 15
* Entertainment Centre in Brisbane, Nov 18
* Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland, Nov 22