Author(s): Benjamin Halligan
The Arena Concert: Music, Media and Mass Entertainment is the first sustained engagement with what might said to be - in its melding of concert and gathering, in its evolving relationship with digital and social media, in its delivery of event, experience, technology and star - the art form of the 21st century. This volume offers interviews with key designers, discussions of the practicalities of mounting arena concerts, mixing and performing live to a mass audience, recollections of the giants of late twentieth century music in performance, and critiques of latter-day pretenders to the throne. The authors track the evolution of the arena concert, consider design and architecture, celebrity and fashion, and turn to feminism, ethnographic research, and ideas of humour, liveness and authenticity, in order to explore and frame the arena concert. The arena concert becomes the "real time" centre of a global digital network, and the gig-goer pays not only for an immersion in (and, indeed, role in) its spectacular nature, but also for a close encounter with the performers, in this contained and exalted space. The spectacular nature of the arena concert raises challenges that have yet to be fully technologically overcome, and has given rise to a reinvention of what live music actually means. Love it or loathe it, the arena concert is a major presence in the cultural landscape of the 21st century. This volume finds out why.
This collection of essays engages with all aspects of arena concerts, including performance, music, industry, history, audience, social media, choreography and design.
Robert Edgar is a Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Arts at York St John University, UK. Kirsty Fairclough-Isaacs is Senior Lecturer in Media and Performance and Associate Director (International) in the School of Arts and Media at the University of Salford, UK. Benjamin Halligan is Director of Postgraduate Research for the College of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Salford, UK. Nicola Spelman is Senior Lecturer in Popular Music in the School of Arts and Media at the University of Salford, UK.
Acknowledgements Contributors Introduction: "A Stately Pleasure-Dome"? Robert Edgar, Kirsty Fairclough-Isaacs, Benjamin Halligan and Nicola Spelman Part One: Prehistories 1: From Mach Schau to Mock Show: The Beatles, Shea Stadium, and Rock Spectacle Jeffrey Roessner 2. Beyond Beatlemania: The Shea Stadium Concert as Discursive Construct Mark Duffett 3: Through a Lens Darkly: The Changing Performer-Audience Dynamic as Documented by Four Progressive Rock Concert Films Kevin Holm-Hudson 4: Evolutions of The Wall: 1979 - 2013 Kimi Karki Part Two: Arena Concerts Now 5: From Shed to Venue: the Arena Concert Event Space Robert Kronenburg 6: Constructing the Cosmopolitan Arena Concert Lukasz Swiatek 7: "Roll Up and Shine": A Case Study of Stereophonics at Glasgow's SECC Arena Emma Webster 8: Being There: Encounters with Space and the Affective Dimension of Arena Spectacle Alice O'Grady Part Three: Perspectives - Personal and Professional 9: "Hello Cleveland..!": The View from the Stage Jon Stewart 10: Illuminating Arenas: Towards the "Ultimate Multimedia Experience" Jon Stewart and Benjamin Halligan 11: A Personal History of UK Arena Concerts: Reflections on Gigs over the Past Forty Years Peter Smith 12: Rocking Around Watford: Trying to Find What I Was Looking For Robert Edgar, with Julia and Evan Shelton Part Four: Arena Media 13: The Aesthetics of the Arena: Live and Recorded Robert Edgar 14: We Made This Together: How Awesome; I Fuckin' Shot That! Foresaw Changes in the Live Concert Experience Brought about by Digital Technology and Social Media Neil Fox 15: Framing Experience: Filming and the Excesses of Aesthetics Erich Hertz Part Five: The Arena Experience 16: "Sing it with me now": Audience Participation in Arena Concerts Nicola Spelman 17: Performing Kylie: Looks Divine Sunil Manghani 18: Intimacy in Public Jos Mulder 19: Beyonce's Celebrity Feminism and Performances of Female Empowerment in the Arena Concert Kirsty Fairclough-Isaacs 20: Intimate Live Girls Benjamin Halligan Bibliography Index