World's biggest concert since the outbreak of the pandemic: 50,000 people enjoyed a show in New Zealand

World’s biggest concert since the outbreak of the pandemic: 50,000 people enjoyed a show in New Zealand

Video: The audience sings while the band waits. Then the joy bursts with live music

Singer Matthew Walters smiled as he looked at 50,000 ecstatic and lively fans: “How are you, Eden Park?”

While most of the world is still confined, it is the set Six 60 He was playing in front of large crowds in New Zealand, where social distancing is not necessary after the nation wipes out the coronavirus. The conclusion of the band’s tour on Saturday night, It has been described as the world’s biggest concert since the start of the pandemic.

Equally important to the band that met playing rugby in college was playing a role The first party took place at the historic Eden Park rugby stadium. Finding themselves on the cusp of world music was a turnaround for the Six60s, who achieved unprecedented success in New Zealand, but whose forays abroad ended without the breakthroughs they sought.

50 thousand spectators in the stadium (AP)

One of the attendees, Lucy Klumpas, found it a surreal experience to be surrounded by so many people after spending the past year in endless confinement in Great Britain. “It is very important for us as human beings to be able to come together and sing the same songs together.“, He said. “It makes us feel like we are a part of something“.

Singer Walters said they desperately want their musician friends from all over the world to be able to play live again. “We know what it looks like when you are caged. Was nonsense. And we didn’t know if we’d ever be able to party againHe said in an interview before the show. “But we’re fortunate, for a number of reasons, here in New Zealand“.

The tour began in December and consisted of seven shows, with an Unthinkable Close (AP).
The tour began in December and consisted of seven shows, with an Unthinkable Close (AP).

Most days, The country has reported fewer than 10 new cases of COVID-19. Sometimes it’s nothing. Since the epidemic began, it has recorded only 2,600 cases and 26 deaths.

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Guitarist J Fraser said the reception they received during their summer tour was amazing. “It was amazing to see how fanatical and enthusiastic people were to go out and watch live music, and see something that took them out of a long and brutal year,” she said. “It was very special.”

Walters said they worried that something was wrong, and that their concerts would become very popular events. But he said there isn’t much to do, other than follow the rules and follow government guidelines.

Masks were not mandatory (AP)
Masks were not mandatory (AP)

The band was formed 13 years ago after they started improvising in rugby locker rooms, so their concert on the Holy Land of the All Blacks rugby team in the country was like completing a circuit.

The band had lobbied for changing civic standards and allowing concerts in Eden Park, however Not all of the neighbors were happy.

Among those who objected was former Prime Minister Helen Clark, who said at the time that the concerts would be a “home invasion” due to the noise.

But people wanted that. He spoke to the peopleThe singer added that Clark would have welcomed the concert, Walters said. Six60 is for everyone. Perhaps if he comes and enjoys it, he will change his mind. “

Promoter Brent Eccles said they only got permission to use the place at the last minute. He said, “And we think about ourselves, well, how crazy are we?” And the answer was, well, pretty crazy. Let’s do it then. “

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It was an incredible rise of a group that started out as a hard-core student cover group. His style has evolved and remains difficult to define, mixing elements of reggae, pop, rock and soul.


Bassist Chris Mac claims his fans are rich and poor, young and old. “We are very fortunate to have become the soundtrack to people’s lives. Weddings, funerals, birthdays, engagement,” before he laughs. “You know, sex reveals the parties, which are all the rage.”

As the band has grown in popularity in New Zealand, it has become a sport criticized by critics for being too cute. Walters said that criticism of success was still a problem in New Zealand, and it was something that bothered him at the time. But he said it also revitalized the band. “We take music very seriously,” he said. “It is important for us to express emotion and tell a story, that our songs are healing and attractive to people. Because it is not by chance that we play in front of 50,000 people.”

Matteo Walters enters the stage (AP)
Matteo Walters enters the stage (AP)

The band tried to gain more recognition abroad, although six months in Germany and a record deal in the US ended in disaster, as reported in the behind-the-scenes documentary about the band, “Six60: Till The Lights Go Out.”

But the group is keen to try again, with a European and British tour scheduled for November. They hope that by that time there will be many places in the world where large crowds can gather to sing.

(With info from AP / Nick Perry)

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