I like to think of good ideas having a theme song. For the Participation Economy maybe it would be “Come Together” by The Beatles. But the manifestation of that spirit and energy has to be embodied by the current world tour by U2. It’s a lesson in participation with scale.
Stadium shows of yesterday were known to have poor sound quality and a vast distance between the performers and the rest of the crowd. But U2 wanted to innovate on that model and create something awe-inspiring.
U2 play upon a 164 foot tall stage positioned in the middle of a packed audience, nearly 70,000 strong. Bono says to the audience: "We built this spaceship to get closer to you." It’s the biggest concert stage ever built, has no defined front or back and is surrounded on all sides by the audience. The stage design also includes a cylindrical video screen and will increase the venues' capacities by about 15–20%. "The band is just sitting in the palm of the audience's hand," said Designer Willie Williams.