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Home arrow Nick Mason's SOS 2023 arrow July 24th - TEATRO GRANDE / GRAND THEATRE, POMPEII, ITALY
July 24th - TEATRO GRANDE / GRAND THEATRE, POMPEII, ITALY Print E-mail
Teatro Grande Pompeii
TICKET SCAN TO GO HERE


Capacity: 1,800

Concert starts: 9pm

Address of venue: Via Plinio, Pompei NA, Italy. MAP

Website: pompeiisites.org

 

COMMENTS

Due to the critical success of the four initial shows in May 2018, held in tiny venues in London's Camden and Putney, Nick Mason's Saucerful Of Secrets announced a full European tour for September that year. The expanded shows for the full tour were even more highly acclaimed, and it came as no surprise when further dates for 2019 were announced. The insatiable demand for more dates, in more locations, resulted in the band carrying on from where they left off, with numerous shows in 2022 taking the music to new fans, as well as those who have already experienced the show, eager for more - particularly with the halt to concerts due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The band clearly had a great time last year, as they are performing more shows in 2023!

A side note about this particular show: fans will be wondering why the concert isn't being held in the iconic amphitheatre which Pink Floyd were filmed in, and David Gilmour returned to in 2016 for a pair of concerts. It seems they don't permit concerts to be held in the venue now (maybe David's shows were more hassle for the site than it was worth?) but a limited number of concerts ARE permitted at the Grand Theatre - so that's where the Saucers are playing!

The Teatro Grande is thought to have been built in the second century BC, carved into the lava mass on which Pompeii was originally built. It was one of the first permanent stone theatres in the Roman empire, and used to seat around 5,000. It was preserved - as the rest of the site was - by the devastating volcanic eruption of Mount Vesuvius, and these days for events caters for around 2,200-1,800 audience members. Should be a magical place to see the band in action on their 2023 Echoes Tour, which is also heading to Australia for a string of shows in September.

Nick Mason's Saucerful Of Secrets brings together some familiar names, all great musicians: joining Nick are Gary Kemp and Lee Harris on guitars, Guy Pratt on bass, and Dom Beken on keyboards. Kemp is best known for his work with Spandau Ballet, Harris as having played guitar with The Blockheads (Ian Dury's band), Pratt needs no introduction, and Beken is principally known for his work with The Orb, and Transit Kings (with Pratt). The band will be playing early Pink Floyd songs.

This is a unique opportunity to experience Pink Floyd's celebrated and significant early body of work played live including songs from albums 'The Piper At The Gates of Dawn' and 'A Saucerful Of Secrets'.

The regular sale of tickets starts on WEDNESDAY, March 22nd 2023 at 12pm (local time), via this direct link at www.dalessandroegalli.com.

SET LIST - highlight the following with your mouse to read...
FIRST HALF: One Of These Days, Arnold Layne, Fearless, Obscured By Clouds, When You're In, Candy And A Currant Bun, Vegetable Man, If, Atom Heart Mother, If Reprise, Remember A Day, Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun.SECOND HALF: Astronomy Domine, The Nile Song, Burning Bridges, Childhood's End, Lucifer Sam, Echoes.
ENCORE:
See Emily Play, A Saucerful Of Secrets, Bike.

WARNING - SPOILERS AHEAD!

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

Show nine of the 2023 European tour tour saw the band continue to battle the heat in Italy, which like much of the central band of Europe has been suffering with extreme weather, with temperatures breaking records in many places.

In terms of key, special, performance locations in the history of Pink Floyd, Pompeii is surely right up there, potentially in pole position. Back in 1971, the band filmed a concert with a difference there: in the antithesis of standard gig recordings, the director, Adrian Maben, decided to forego an audience, making for an atmospheric film which has stood the test of time, and is the subject of a pair of exhibitions in the corridors of the amphitheatre itself. Later, in 2016, David Gilmour returned for a pair of shows there, with the authorities making an exception and allowing him to perform in the same place. During his time there, he was granted an Honorary Citizenship of modern Pompei, an honour similarly conferred to Nick (see the recent news pages).

Unfortunately, apart from that brief reuse of the amphitheatre, concerts are not permitted in that space. Occasional shows ARE staged in the Teatro Grande - Grand Theatre - which is similarly ancient and uncovered during the excavations, and being a Roman theatre the acoustics are amazing.

This was clear as soon as the band started playing; it appeared that there was a lot less amplification than normal, but the clarity and power of the music was beyond expectations. With the vast majority sat on the ancient stone steps (albeit with provided cushions to ease any discomfort), and a handful on the floor level in standard chairs, everyone had a great view, and an even better sound experience.

A couple of things of additional note. Firstly, the show started with Nick wearing a very familiar hat. A wide brimmed, felt hat. As it turned out, it was the self-same hat that he wore during the filming of Pink Floyd Live At Pompeii! It had been brought over especially by Nettie Mason, Nick's wife. Whilst talking about the hat, he did regret he no longer had the moustache, but did reference the citizenship award ceremony earlier that day. He seemed to hope that it meant he could park his car anywhere he liked!

Secondly, in his introduction to Set The Controls, Nick pulled out his mobile phone and pretended to take a call from Roger Waters, asking where his gong was! After saying he was at home, and didn't know where it was, he seemed to shift the blame to David Gilmour who he said might have had it...

One thing that Guy pointed out was that there were three people who could boast having played in Pompeii twice: himself, Richard Wright, and Nick. He also pointed out that the Black Strat guitar had also been used twice in Pompeii (1971 and 2016), and his bass guitar had been used twice (2016 and 2023).

To say that the show was superb, and a truly memorable experience, would be an understatement - feedback from others there tallied with this. There were no changes to the set list, or to the projections, other than the lack of normal backdrop behind the band. Instead, ancient brickwork in the form of broken walls, was used for the projections to great effect. This seemed to give more focus on the music and performance, heightening the experience for many in the crowd.

Did you go to this show? Let us know!

The band - remaining in Italy for the final one of their July shows - now head to the Gardone Riviera, a beautiful location to conclude the current dates.


 

 

YOUR HELP NEEDED! We want to cover Nick'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!

Last Updated ( Thursday, 03 August 2023 )
 
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