Stageco has revealed its work on the Foo Fighters’ tour, where injured frontman Dave Grohl appeared on a custom built ‘Iron Throne’.
Falling from the stage and breaking his leg in front of a 52,000-capacity crowd was not part of Dave Grohl’s script when Foo Fighters played Gothenburg’s Ullevi Stadium in June during their Sonic Highways world tour.
“[I] wound up feet first, dropping about 12 feet, dislocating my ankle and snapping my fibula like an old pair of take out chopsticks,” said Grohl, shortly after his mid-shred incident.
Despite being weighed down by a plaster cast, Grohl was desperate for the band to sacrifice only the absolute minimum of dates. Within three weeks, the Foos were back on the road, having cancelled just seven European shows, including their appearances on one of Stageco’s festival stages at Pinkpop and under an XXL-Roof at Rock Werchter which had been brought forward by a week to fit in with the Foos’ touring plans.
The key to Grohl’s rapid stage recovery was the medieval-looking ’Iron Throne’, designed by Grohl and lighting designer Dan Hadley, that not only enabled the frontman to perform in relative comfort, but also created an iconic set piece – adorned with thrusting guitar necks, moving lights and special effects.
When the Foos were ready to return to Europe in September, the two lost Wembley Stadium shows were transferred to Milton Keynes National Bowl ahead of the rearranged date at Edinburgh’s Murrayfield Stadium.
Liaising with production manager Joe Beebe, Stageco toured with two different staging set-ups. Foo Fighters’ production included PRG’s huge video screen that required a height clearance that usually is only possible with Stageco’s SuperRoof, however, with two systems already busy on The Rolling Stones’ Zip Code tour in America, alternative plans had to be made for around half of the dates.
Dirk De Decker, Stageco’s project manager for the tour, said: “While the SuperRoof was present in Milton Keynes, the solution at Murrayfield was to use a four-Tower roof that was specially modified to increase the height and clearance. In terms of the festival appearances that were cancelled, careful engineering had ensured that the band’s set-up would fit within the dimensions of the Stageco roofs being used.”
Touring with up to 14 trailers of equipment, Stageco fielded a crew of 11 supervisors, headed by a variety of chiefs. The tour – now dubbed the ‘Broken Leg tour’ by the band and crew alike – is scheduled to end in Barcelona on 11 November.