IT’S been 19 years in the making but finally another superstar has made it to the Gold Coast for an outdoor show. Elton John will take to the stage in the Gold Coast Hinterland this afternoon.
IT’S been 19 years in the making but finally another superstar has made it to the Gold Coast for an outdoor show.
Not since Frank Sinatra sang I Did It My Way at Sanctuary Cove in 1988 has there been a star as great as Sir Elton John and the set-up at Canungra is leaving nothing to chance.
Workmen have been putting in 10-hour days to set up a stage with equipment estimated to be worth about $5 million.
The promoter’s production representative, Colin Skals, said everything was running smoothly.
“We’ve spent the last five days setting the stage up and there are about 20 men who have been working 10-hour days to get it ready in time,” he said.
“We always get the stages set up in time and Elton’s demands have been quite reasonable.”
Mr Skals said the superstar had not behaved like a prima donna and there was nothing ‘out of the ordinary’ in his list of demands — except for the dozens of red roses.
“He has a thing for roses but everything else is quite normal,” he said.
“I have to set up for a lot of artists and see a lot of backstage requests and there was nothing over the top about his list — I was quite disappointed.”
The site has 7000 seats tied together so they don’t get knocked over by fans during the concert.
Mr Skals has been involved in the project for six months and he did not think Queensland had ever seen such a huge single act outside of Brisbane.
“I think it’s a good reflection on Elton that he would come all the way out here just to perform for his fans,” he said.
The only production that could be compared to the concert at the Elysian Fields was the Ultimate Event that Frank Sinatra hosted to open Sanctuary Cove in the 1980s.
At the time he was the biggest star to ever perform on the Gold Coast.
Since then the convention centre has opened and attracted big names such as The Veronicas and Missy Higgins — but none has compared in stature to Elton.
Mr Skals said while the audience would be enjoying hits such as Your Song and Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, he would be preparing to tear down the five days of hard work on Monday.
“We have to be prepared to get out of here in an orderly fashion otherwise other shows will be affected,” he said.
“But we are ready for any conditions, we’ve laid down aluminium on the ground so if it does rain the semi-trailers will still be able to get in and out. The show always goes on.”
Elton will be playing 10 shows across Australia ranging from the Barossa Valley in South Australia to Townsville in North Queensland.
But, he will only be using two different sets of equipment so after each show the stage has to be dismantled and quickly taken to the next location, where it will take five days to set up again.
“It’s an expensive show and a massive effort but it will all be worth it on the night,” said Mr Skals.
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