Pink Floyd RSS News Feed

Statistics

We have 12 guests online
Visitors: 52701227
black strat book
Nick Mason Inside Out signed copy
Brain Damage and A Fleeting Glimpse
Home arrow 2013 WALL TOUR
September 4th - OLYMPIASTADION, BERLIN, GERMANY Print E-mail
Olympiastadion
Roger Waters - Berlin 2013 ticket

Capacity: 65,500
Concert starts: 8pm

Address of venue: Olympischer Platz 3, 14053 Berlin, Germany. MAP

Website: www.olympiastadion-berlin.de

 

COMMENTS

Roger's back in Germany for the second of three shows in the country - this time at the iconic and historic Olympic Stadium in Berlin, host of the 1936 Olympic Games. Should be a very special show...

The RogerWaters.com presales have begun, with advance tickets available to those who had registered their interest in particular cities. General sale tickets are now available through Eventim.de and other official agents (exact dates and outlets can be found via Roger's website). The public sale will also see a limited number of VIP packages made available for each show on the tour. Our thanks to Thomas Pankow and also to Marisol Matarredona, for both sending in a scan of the Eventim "fan version" of the concert ticket - a great design! Click on the thumbnail to the right to see it in more detail...

YOUR HELP NEEDED! We want to cover Roger's concerts the best we can, to share the experience with everyone, especially those who won't be able to attend the shows. We'd love to see ANY pictures, tickets scans, reviews, newspaper reports, and anything else you come across for this show - we look forward to hearing from you!

SET LIST
FIRST HALF: In the Flesh, The Thin Ice, Another Brick in the Wall Part 1, The Happiest Days of our Lives, Another Brick in the Wall Part 2/The Ballad of Jean Charles de Menezes, Mother, Goodbye Blue Sky, Empty Spaces, What Shall We Do Now, Young Lust, One of My Turns, Don't Leave Me Now, Another Brick in the Wall Part 3, The Last Few Bricks, Goodbye Cruel World
SECOND HALF: Hey You, Is There Anybody Out There?, Nobody Home, Vera, Bring the Boys Back Home, Comfortably Numb, The Show Must Go On, In The Flesh, Run Like Hell, Waiting for the Worms, Stop, The Trial, Outside the Wall.

 

WARNING - SPOILERS AHEAD!

Do not read on if you don't want surprises to be spoilt, regarding what the band played, and what happened as the night unfolded!

Night twenty of the tour, and the arrival at Berlin's famous Olympic Stadium. To be sitting in such a venue, which, of course, has such incredible history. To see Roger in his manic dictator role in the second half, close to where Hitler would have stood, was quite strange.

Despite a rather subdued audience through most of the show, the band powered through a masterful performance (albeit with a few musical glitches that most would not have spotted), and eventually (pretty much when Roger gestured heavily during "Can you stand up...") the crowd got on its feet and celebrated the music. A fuller review will follow, once I've fully digested my first 2013 Wall concert - the last I saw was in 2011, indoors, so there's been quite a change!

The next stop on the tour is Dusseldorf, on Friday, which hopefully will be remembered more for Roger's 70th birthday, rather than any threatened protests. If you went to this show in Berlin, please let us know what you thought of the event, and if anything interesting or different happened if you've been to previous shows and can compare.

CONCERT REVIEW, VIDEO and PICTURES by BD's Matt

Well, where do I start? My first Wall show since Birmingham, England in 2011, and my first outdoor show as well. Despite having seen a mountain of pictures and video from various shows in between, my enthusiasm and sense of curiosity or expectation were undiminished. It did seem strange though that - unlike the last time I was in Berlin for one of Roger's shows - there was a complete lack of any posters, flyers or anything else to alert the Berliners to the arrival of the show. The local TV also seemed oblivious, but then there's a music festival taking place in the city at the moment, and THAT also seemed to be virtually ignored. It was all most peculiar and rather unexpected. 

In terms of threatened disruption, there were rumours that this concert would be targetted as well as the Dusseldorf show on Friday (Roger's birthday) although the threats for that show have been more overt. In the event, if there were any protesters there, they made no impact to proceedings, with no obvious presence either in the stadium, or outside. There WERE some supporters of the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) Campaign against the State of Israel, and they were handing out this flyer to fans entering the venue.

The stadium itself was used in the 1936 Olympics. This was notable for a number of reasons - not least, it was the first televised Olympics, and featured Jesse Owens and his stunning performance, winning the gold medal in the 100m, 200m, long jump and 4 x 100m relay and breaking 11 Olympic records. Sadly though, Hitler refused to present Owens with his gold medals or shake his hand, instead being critical of the US for allowing Owens to compete for them. So, plenty of history, and thus one of the most interesting venues on the tour, not least for when Roger transforms into the dictator figure in the second half. Indeed, some of the band before the show were commenting on the unusual and historically fascinating nature of the venue - elements of which were the inspiration for the animation designs in the latter part of the show (Run Like Hell, et al).

The stadium seemed pretty well organised, in terms of the ticketing pick-ups, and the overall set-up on the day (apart from confusion amongst the stewards as to where those with seats in the front half of the pitch area were permitted to enter the stadium!). There was very little litter at the end of the show, which was a big surprise at such a well-attended event. One element which helped that was the €2 deposit on the plastic cups that the drinks were sold in. A few people helped cover their costs for the evening picking these up from the floor after the concert had finished, to reclaim the €2 per cup. A sensible move was to include a large number of blue and white portaloos near the back of the pitch, sited right behind the projectors, to make life easier and quicker for people. The stadium made for an impressive site as one entered - with it being built 12 metres below ground level, it formed quite a deep bowl despite the relatively shallow appearance from outside. The picture here shows the aftermath of the show as the staging is broken down but gives an impression of how the stadium looked on the evening, and the picture after it shows some of the projectors.

Berlin Olympiastadion - after Roger Waters concert, 2013

Berlin Olympiastadion - projectors for Roger Waters concert, 2013

I managed to meet a number of you before the show, during the intermission, and afterwards, which was great. I also had a nice chat with a guy from Norway on the train with his wife, heading to the stadium - sorry, didn't get to find out your name, but hope you enjoyed the show, and that the drive down to Berlin was worthwhile.

With the sun setting behind the stage, conditions were perfect for the show. Being September, the warm day lead to a cooler evening, once the sun finally disappeared. The audience were arranged with seats in the part nearest the stage (with both sets of side seating at a 45 degree angle to the stage), and behind a barrier, and the mixing desk, general standing. The grandstands were generally full, with a few fans sat right at the very top at the very back. Roger must've looked like a dot from that distance - although of course the beauty of the show is that further back enables a better appreciation of the visual element of things.

Despite the 8pm prompt warnings on the tickets, things kicked off after 8:30pm, with the show greeting an audience who seemed generally subdued throughout the show. At one point Roger asked "Is there anybody out there?!" to get the first real cheer of the night (Roger: "I thought there was [somebody out there]!") but the seated fans clearly felt comfortable in that position, as later Roger had to work on the "Can you stand up?" hand gestures to rouse them out of their chairs. You can see this in one of the video clips below.

This lack of feedback seemed to affect the band a little - there were a few bits musically that weren't quite right; nothing major, and most would not have noticed it, but not quite as polished as other shows here and there. Maybe fatigue with the material is starting to show itself, what with over 200 performances having been done? Actually, Harry Waters looked a little unwell at the end so maybe there's a bug going around the band? Pure speculation on my part though!

Visually the show was superb. Everything seemed to work exactly as it should, including the pig being led to its eventual slaughter by gleeful fans (although the bemused look on some people's faces post show as they inspected their "rasher" souvenir was a treat - much of the pig is plain black, so a piece of black vinyl without a major graphic on it, such as the crossed hammers or a symbol, seemed to disappoint some!). The projections were sharper and more vivid than I'd seen them before, and the addition of the "live" footage was well worked in. The inclusion of footage on the left and right of the wall was cleverly integrated, with a number of bricks tumbling to allow the band to be seen. At other times, the superimposition of Roger, huge, upon the wall worked very well - especially during the latter part of the show.

In the preamble to Mother, Roger did his normal bit of introduction in the local language, and a fair job he did at German. He did (in English) add in a passage about an issue with some controversial building works in Berlin, which involves demolishing some of the remaining parts of the old Berlin Wall. More on that on our news pages, and the Mother intro itself can be seen amongst the videos below.

The audience did seem to respond better from Comfortably Numb onwards, although there was still some 'stand up/sit down/stand up/sit down' behaviour until we got to the final part of The Trial, and Roger seemed pretty happy during Outside The Wall, even screaming "thank you!!" a couple of times (see picture).

As my first experience of the stadium version of the show, I really enjoyed it, despite the lukewarm audience. Berlin's always a fun place to see Roger perform (I was lucky enough to see his shows in the city in 1990 and 2006, as well) and I hope one day he will return there, perhaps with new material? Anyway, the outdoor version of the show is really incredible, and if you've yet to see it, you don't have too many opportunities left before the tour wraps up. The show now heads to another German city, Dusseldorf, for a show that hopefully won't be blighted by the protests and boycott urged by the Jewish Community of the city. For me, I now have to wait a week and a half for the Wembley show. Hopefully see some of you there?

[MORE PICTURES and VIDEO to follow]

CONCERT REVIEW by BD CONTRIBUTOR, Andreas Claus

When I arrived at the Olympiastadion at same named underground railway station, it should be my first time ever to get to this place. On the way from the station to the stadium I noticed a high number of takeaways on the right starting about 200 meters before and ending close to the entrance gates. This was for me the hugest gathering of takeaways in a row I ever have seen. I'm wondering if that's always the case at any event.

The view from the front court about 100 meters towards the entrance gates of this historical place looked mighty and threatening at the same time. One could hear speaker announcements about what was not allowed to bring in - in German only. The Olympic stadium is situated in the southwest Berlin area. I remember having been to a Pink Floyd concert in 1994 at the nearby Maifeld, but that's another story.

While on the court before entering the gates, I got a page flyer handed by one of the BDS Berlin boycott campaign regarding the current state of Israelian settlement policy towards Palestine. One can check their activities across this link: http://bds-kampagne.de. Roger included there...

So it first looked like it should be a strict place. And it became at least so regarding contents of bags, which were checked more carefully than any other entrance gates like Frankfurt and later on Duesseldorf. My impression was because of the whole discussion on Roger's high political committment with the Gaza policy, security checks might have been tighter for that reason, but I can be wrong.

Roger Waters - Berlin 2013 Roger Waters - Berlin 2013
Roger Waters - Berlin 2013 Roger Waters - Berlin 2013

Inside Olympiastadium the security situation looked first simmilar prussian with many stewards on security service. But they were tame throughout my whole stay and weren't nasty with people who were documenting the show. My compliments for their hustle-free proceeding, which speaks for Roger's generosity regarding security advise not to spoil fans in the audience! I'm sure there's always a high number at each show coming to see it first and last time ever in their lives and in history ...

I recognised not more inactivity of the people in the audience around me in the left lower sub-rank, first row, third close to the stage, where I was seated in this oval place, than compared to anywhere else so far. Generally can people in Berlin behave different than in any other german city. Especially regarding its highest population and the special living environment in Berlin, which still breathes the pre-reunification spirit a bit. Because not only the streets and houses of Kreuzberg (the old West-Berlin house squatter scene city part) nearby 'East Side Gallery' (Friedrichshain, ex-East Berlin and neighbour reunificated city part) provide one very often the feeling of a capital city feeling of plurality, offerings and helplessness to find the right way in terms of too many options. German sociological terms about their living space are: 'Großstadtmolloch' and 'Kiez', which should explain the disorientated and disinterested behaviour by original and long-termed Berlin inhabitants.

Still inside the stadium, the distance to the stage was bigger than in Frankfurt, because the place still contains the original cinder track and was originally built for a larger audience than anywhere else in Germany ever before the 1936 Olympics, which stood under the NS-regime command, which was a bad era for Germany. I'm glad to not have experienced such a bad time in history and be greatful to the good times I am still having with the long and ongoing creative output of any ever experienced Pink Floyd musician, may it be Roger Waters, David Gilmour, the late Richard Wright or Nick Mason.

It's interesting that this politically repression featuring 80 year old building can function now as a bridge and reminder regarding politics then and today. For the show especially then when it comes to 'In the flesh', 'Run like hell', 'Waitung for the worms' and 'The trial' in the second set. Where many of then repression elements are demonstrated. The timelessness of 'The Wall' lies in the exposal of the exposal as a corrective measure to show what should still be right and wrong today. It's still a mirror for our modern society in regards to war and death, peace and love, media, commercials, technology, isolation and madness.

From the architectural view, the latest remarkable stadium change must have been the addition of a roof rim before the football world championship 2006, which gave more protection against rain, but only for the lower sub-rank area. The actual indoor arena (the sports field) is still open air area. So no rain protection. I think it would have been too expensive for this big stadium to establish a lockable full roof. Although there was no rain in Olympiastadion during the show, the weather situation was still in doubt a day before the show, when I arrived on 3rd September at my friend's house in Kreuzberg at the Landwehrkanal.

Unfortunately too late, I heard about Roger had been to the East side gallery on the 3rd September to support the demand on preservation of the last remains of the Berlin wall and all art affairs around this memorial place - initiated and invited by Berlin protest group "East Side Gallery retten". I'm wondering, if apart from his politically attitude towards WALLS in general, his support might have anything to with a) his last two Berlin concerts in the nearby situated O2 World Arena in 2011, b) the fact that of all things real estate investors from Israel got building license for tearing and replacing the memorial with a hotel and luxury appartment building complex. As I see Matt has posted already something, here are some alternative links:

- www.eastsidegallery-berlin.de
- www.rbb-online.de/kultur/beitrag/2013/09/Pink-Floyd-Frontman-soll-East-Side-Gallery-retten.html

So I was wondering how the indoor room would have looked like if really heavy rain would have come. But it happily didn't. I was glad too, because I was sub-rank and a guy I met before told me that angular rain has reached him becoming wet at a similar position in the sub-rank once before. I experienced the Berlin audience in their typical oblivious way as I experienced it in the past. I was sitting beside two women on my left who know each other from work. It could have been different if I'd been sitting inbetween a wild bunch of freaks, but wasn't. So I was glad everything was going right for this show.

I think Berlin is changing all the time, still breathing with the oblivious, but at least interested and even younger people in the audience, because of the many movements or stays there. Berlin today is still the city of art, artists and other options, like party all night long. Berlin was the only city in Germany and probably Europe that never had a curfew. There was 24 hour opening and party during cold war times when elsewhere this was a foreign word. There were 'intershops' on the transit ways from West-Germany to Berlin through the DDR, where all western people were allowed to buy Krim Chamaign on a favourable currency exchange rate, which is unthinkable today. Compared to the cold war times there's nowadays little of the grand past, because there is too much confusion by manipulating real estate companies, who try to change city parts like Kreuzberg, Mitte and Prenzlauer Berg to destroy meaningful history. This seems to escalate since the last 15 years, and occured along when Bonn moved to Berlin, while globalism and planet population is growing bigger.

Other Berlin concerts for me with Roger were: 2002 Velodrom, 2006 Wuhlheide, 2011 O2 Arena - Two shows. I estimate Roger must have been to Berlin at least 20 times in his life, including his stays with Pink Floyd from the early 70's on: 13.02.70 TU, 05.06.71 Eissporthalle, 13.05.72 & 29.01.77 Deutschlandhalle.

Roger's current and hopefully not last production of 'The Wall' is encouarging regarding to what it's feeling like with contemporary technical production possibilities. One must say WOW to the incredible clear and undistorted special sound - and often with the typical 360 degree audio effects. Sounded like the early Pink Floyd using the Azimuth Coordinator. How good these effects came, but of course designed for 'The Wall'. People around me formally reacted scared when dramatic sounds came from any unexpected direction and not from stage speakers like normally used with any other usual rock show. But this is not a usual rock show containing epos and religion altogether once one has been banned and this must be normally the case very shortly after the show has started. If not, something must be wrong with the spectator :-)

The pig was navigated by remote control this time, because the place was too big for leading it on rope manually by people through the room. This at least was differnt for Frankfurt and Duesseldorf, where the pig was manually leaded into the room on ropes.

There was no confetti anymore like it was with the final section of the 2011 and 2012 shows. The 2013 leg of this '2010-2013' tour left the pig indoor until 'Outside the Wall' started. And was slaughtered by the audience after flying long over their heads before could be reached to touch.

This is different to previous legs of the tour, where the pig was only flying in the room across their heads during 'run like hell' and then moved back behind the Wall, while the show went on.

The projections were clear as ever. I'm still surprised about Bar Refaeli, the israelian model, who is used in the live projection of 'Young Lust' demanded recently to remove her from the production! It was already clear in 2006 to everyone that Roger is against the Gaza policy by Israel. To me it sounds as if non-democratic israelian politians, rabbies and so on try to ban him for freedom of speech. Because they are too coward to accept making peace with palestine settlers who have historically a right to settle there all over the place including land zones occupied by Israel.

Probably are there now many pinpricks going on. The Berlin show at Olympiastadion will stay always in my memory. It's often the different scenary, which makes "The Wall" at different places so interesting. So after Frankfurt, Berlin and Duesseldorf, all settings are bound for the final show in Paris.

Hope to find anyone there. Whoever it might be there, please travel safe and best wishes!
Andreas

CONCERT REVIEW and PICTURES by BD CONTRIBUTOR, Joe McGuire

Thought the Olympic Stadium was the finest venue for The Wall and was disappointed to find no crossed hammer regalia draped from it, but on learning that not everybody welcomed Roger it was probably better to leave that out.

This being my first stadium show I expected it to be bigger, better, louder than previous indoor shows but it (other than some more visuals) seemed pretty similar. Still a fantastic show and well worth the wait and expense - there is no gig like a RW / Floyd gig!

Roger Waters, Berlin 2013 Roger Waters, Berlin 2013 Roger Waters, Berlin 2013
Roger Waters, Berlin 2013 Roger Waters, Berlin 2013 Roger Waters, Berlin 2013

Wasn't until I got home and looked back at my pix that I appreciated just how good it was and Wembley was still to come.

CONCERT REVIEWS and PICTURES by other BD CONTRIBUTORS

Hopefully coming soon - we welcome all contributions!

Last Updated ( Monday, 23 September 2013 )
 
< Prev   Next >
Brain Damage on Facebook Follow Brain Damage on Twitter Brain Damage's YouTube channel
Pink Floyd Calendar

Next 20 concerts

Pink Floyd on iTunes
Donate to Brain Damage
Behind The Wall book
Pink Floyd: Backstage book
HeYou Floyd Fanzine - order details
www.Brain-Damage.co.uk - the Pink Floyd, David Gilmour & Roger Waters news & info site
All content except where noted otherwise is © Brain Damage/Matt Johns 2017.
Please see 'About Brain Damage' page for legal details and the small print!
Website generously designed and built by 3B Web Design