Beacon Theatre, New York, NY
Set List of Show:
Set List of Show:
- "City Of Blinding Lights"
- "With or Without You"
- "Out of Control"
- "Stories for Boys"
- "I Will Follow"
- "Iris (Hold Me Close)"
- "Sunday Bloody Sunday"
- "Pride (In the Name of Love)"
- "Where the Streets Have No Name"
- "Beautiful Day"
- "Torna a Surriento"
- "Into the Heart"
- "Miss Sarajevo"
Pre-Recorded Intro Song: "Empire State Human" - The Human League
Snippets of Other Songs Performed by Bono:
"Piece of My Heart" (Janis Joplin) /
"Miracle Drug" (U2) /
"Hallelujah" (Leonard Cohen) /
"Glad to See You Go" (The Ramones) /
"Crumbs from Your Table" (U2) /
"Money Money" (from Cabaret) /
Tonight is the tenth show of Bono’s run of 11 shows at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. He will also return for an invite only final performance where filming of the performance will take place. The theatre, capacity 2894, was also where the first leg of the tour started in November. Bono is performing these shows with Kate Ellis on cello and backing vocal, Jacknife Lee on keyboard and percussion and Gemma Doherty on backing vocals, harp and keyboard. Tonight’s show is the second of three additional shows announced after the first eight sold quickly.
The show tonight started around 8:20 and ran for approximately two hours. Although advertised as a sell out on the marquee for the Beacon Theatre at the time, there was tickets still available in the afternoon on the day of the show.
Wobbly was the word fans used to describe Bono’s performance tonight. He is working with new stage marks and it felt like he was a little lost at times on the stage. At one point Bono was even off to one side stacking chairs when he seemed to realize the crowd was still there, and that he still had a show to put on. Perhaps it was easy to forget the crowd. Earlier, Bono attempted to coax the audience to their feet at the end of “City of Blinding Lights” to little reaction from the front rows, although he had pockets of success further back. Comments from those sitting further up suggested the audience looked “corporate”. It wasn’t a bad performance, Bono’s voice was strong and he didn’t miss a story, it was just apparent that maybe some of the smaller changes to where he was on stage had a bigger impact on the show tonight, and that the audience being more reserved may have played into some of that.
Filming is taking place at all of the shows at The Beacon this week. Tonight two tripods are seen on either side of the mix board which blocks views of those seated behind. While attempts were made to move those affected, it was not possible to move everyone.
Special guests in the audience included actor Liam Neeson and one of his sons, actor Jessica Chastain and husband, musicians Michael Stipe and Billy Bragg, model Helena Christensen, actor Hugh Jackman and his wife Deborah. Bono’s wife Ali is also at the show, as is Gavin Friday.
References to other songs are dotted throughout the performance beyond those listed in the main set list. As Bono talks about his heart surgery, he includes a snippet of Janis Joplin’s “Piece of My Heart”. Bono recites some of the lyrics from “Miracle Drug” as well. There’s a brief reference to Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” as Bono introduces Gemma Doherty on the harp, where Bono drops his voice in an imitation of Cohen’s gravelly voice. Bono also sings along to the Ramones’ “Glad to See You Go” ahead of “Out of Control”. Bono quotes the line “Where you live should not decide whether you live or whether you die” from “Crumbs from Your Table” as the music builds for “Where the Streets Have No Name”. “Money, Money” from Cabaret appears in “Desire” as it had during other shows on the tour.
There are other moments of U2 music in the show “Into the Heart” can be heard on harp at one point under Bono’s story, although Bono does not reference the song or sing it at all. “Gloria” can be heard in the backing with vocals by Gemma Doherty. “October” can also be heard as an instrumental. But Bono isn’t performing on these.
The event was a phones free event, and phones were collected as people entered the theatre and placed into locked pouches. Your phone is with you during the performance but can only be unlocked in certain areas of the theatre lobby, and is unlocked upon ending.
The theatre, located on the Upper West Side of New York opened in 1929. It was originally built as a movie theatre, and these days is used as an entertainment venue by Madison Square Garden Entertainment. The theatre is a New York City interior landmark and is also on the National Register of Historic Places. The Beacon makes use of a new audio system, Sphere Immersive Sound (yes, the same Sphere as Las Vegas) to provide state-of-the-art sound to each seat in the venue.
These three final “Stories of Surrender” shows were announced on January 5, 2022. Tickets went on sale on January 9, at 10am local time. Ticket prices for the previous shows started at $105 (upper balcony) including fees, and went to $441 (orchestra). (Tickets were also available at $162 for the loge and lower balcony and $313 for the loge and orchestra starting around row R and some seats to the side.) However, most tickets are unavailable at these prices as everything but the back balcony is being sold using Platinum pricing. Tickets do not include a copy of the book.
A presale was not held for U2.com members for these three added shows, however an email in advance of presales, mentioned that a special draw would be held for fan club members to participate in buying select tickets after the general ticket sale. Details of this ticket request program were sent out on January 30, with those applying being notified on February 3 if their purchase had been successful. This is a similar program to what is being used for the presales for The Sphere, where you request tickets and do not know in advance whether or not you are successful.
Posters for the show sell out early in the night, those asking are told they are hoping to have more for the following night.
Many thanks to Desiree, Jason, Elva for assistance with this report.
Officially Released Tracks