January 25, 2022

"Adele described the pool as a 'baggy old pond' and refused, point blank, to stand in the middle of it. The intention was to fill it with water on the set as she was lifted up on a crane-type mechanism, creating the illusion she was floating on water."

From "ROLLING IN THE DEEP END/Adele cancelled her Las Vegas residency after furious rant over swimming pool stunt" (The Sun). 

She was set up to do a 3-month residency, with "tickets selling for up to £9,000 a ticket." But she didn't like the design for a publicity video.

When you’re a diva, you can do that. You can do anything.

CORRECTION: I thought the design was for a publicity video, but I believe it was the set design, and she didn't want to perform in that environment. That's much less diva, more a realistic expectation for a supportive workplace. The word "stunt" in the headline made me think it was a one-time publicity stunt.

54 comments:

Sally327 said...

When you’re a diva, you can do that. You can do anything.

When you're worth over $200 Million you can do that. You can do (almost) anything.

Adele suffers from serious stage fright, at least based on what I've read, and that might explain the sudden cancellation of the complete residency (as opposed to a postponement of just the early dates) more than some disagreement with the set designers.

Temujin said...

What happens to people's brains?

Bob Boyd said...

The Londoner, 33, tearfully cancelled her three-month run of concerts at Caesars Palace.

Wherever she goes there will still be 3 more bouts of PMS that can't be cancelled.

Leland said...

I guess Paloma Faith isn't a diva, which seems right. Seems like they could have come up with a different gimmick. I have the DVD of Garth Brooks' Las Vegas show and I don't recall much more than him with a guitar. His wife came out at one point and sang a song with him.

Caroline said...

Naturally, you have to look at a page fromThe Sun after the link. I can’t unsee that.

AlbertAnonymous said...

Truly, who cares?

RideSpaceMountain said...

When you're in show business, you have to do a lot of distasteful things. When I was in my prime I had to take a dive (but wrestling isn't fake) to The Warrior. The Warrior!?! A real low point in my career. But you gotta woo what you gotta woo.

Bryan Townsend said...

I rather think that this whole over-emotional reaction fits quite well with the aesthetic of her music.

Christopher B said...

Gee, I remember some guy making similar observations about rich men, and everybody getting the vapors. But this is a *woman* with f-u money, so ... carry on, people.

What's emanating from your penumbra said...

You have to look hard for the progressive hypocrisy in this post.

"When you’re a diva, you can do that. You can do anything."

"And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything."

Howard said...

What I find amusing is how the petty and jealous bourgeois think that mountains of money magically erase the eternal internal struggle that is the human condition.

Does it make you feel better about your shitty little life to mock people in pain? I think I'll go listen to "Rolling in the Deep". It reminds me of what a shitheel I was to a lovely young woman back in the freshman dorms.

Breezy said...

I think there must be much more to this story.... Why would the production people ever think it would be ok to put Adele in a scene that triggers her stage fright? And then argue with her about it? This does not add up.

tommyesq said...

She cancelled just 24 hours before the first show was set to begin, after fans had paid up to 9000 pounds (more than $12,000 today) and had travelled to Vegas, gone through all the Covid testing protocols required, booked rooms, rented cars or limos or whatever. Nice "f**K you" to her fans, particularly given that there is NO WAY she viewed this proposed set for the first time a day before the show. It involved a complex set that was to be filled with water, a crane lifting Adele as she sang, etc. - all stuff that would have been put together and extensively dress-rehearsed well in advance.

farmgirl said...

Idk who is a diva and who isn’t- but…
I found Pink and her Dad singing b/c of the Paloma link.
Isn’t that the definition of serendipity?

ttps://youtu.be/mJrftgq6KKw

farmgirl said...

Howard needs his sock washed…

Big Mike said...

Equipment does malfunction. Back in 1999 professional wrestler Owen Hart fell to his death from the rafters at Kemper Arena due to an equipment malfunction in a stunt gone wrong. Adele’s “stunt” may be less dangerous, but if the performer is uncomfortable with the safety of a stunt then that stunt should rightly be cancelled.

But can anyone explain why cancelling the stunt meant cancelling the whole show?

Ann Althouse said...

Why weren't her people supervising the set design? Or did they approve a plan that seemed quite different from the thing they made? It might be an interesting contract dispute. But she's the one who has to stand on that set and deliver a very big performance that meets the crowds expectations.

rcocean said...

Good for her. She didn't want to do what they wanted her to do. And obviously, the producer's didn't want to change it to please her. So she walked. Free Enterprise baby.

I'm more amazed that people would pay all that money to hear her. You can listen to her songs on the internet or CD for 1/000 the price.

jim5301 said...

The same Adelle who tried to get a lowly reporter fired a few months ago. If she signed a contract and gave up control of the set design, it's on her. Further, I find it hard to believe that Caesars Palace would not give in to all her (reasonable) demands including a total set redesign. Looks like she was looking for an excuse to cancel. She doesn't care about her fans.

tim in vermont said...

I love Adele, and she should tell her manager to "eat shit and die" more often.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

I think this is all very funny. Adele is realizing Americans pay big bucks for the over-wrought cheeze.

Gerda Sprinchorn said...
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Mike (MJB Wolf) said...

Okay I'm bothered by "baggy," I admit. I know when she said it, my ear would have heard "boggy" as in bog, swamp, brackish pond. Are we sure the sentence was rendered properly by The Sun? I'm pretty sure she meant "boggy old pond" because what the fuck is a "baggy pond" anyway? Baggy? The pond sags? It has excess room? What?

Gerda Sprinchorn said...

I'm kind of on Adele's side here.

Skilled performers have to put themselves on the line emotionally to perform at their peak. If something upset her, it upset her. I don't know why, but it did.

Bryant said...

"Creating the illusion she was floating on water"

Sounds like a dead sea animal. Now maybe if the illusion was for her to be walking on water she would still be there since that is very diva.

Leland said...

I disagree with Pink and her father's politics, but only once do I think she made it a big deal. However, she's done a couple of videos that show her softer side:
There's her remake of A Million Dreams
And then this MTV Storytellers version of Just Give Me a Reason
Both, I find emotionally impacting without any need for stage gimmicks. BTW, here is a similar impactful yet simply done Adele at Royal Albert Hall singing Someone Like You and Rolling in the Deep
I think they could just put her on stage and let her sing, and it would be worth the ticket. Well, not the scalp price, but still worth the trip and normal ticket prices.

Joe Smith said...

I'm not sure how that's a deal-breaker.

Just work in a new set/number.

Hire the Cirque du Soleil folks and call it a day...

Btw, $30,000 for a ticket is stupid. That sounds like PR bullshit.

People that have the money to pay that aren't stupid.

rcocean said...

Baggy vs. Boggy.

First, fake pond could have been made of plastic and been saggy, and slippery. Hence, baggy. As in plastic glad bag.

Second, she said boggy and the reporter couldn't understand her accent.

Boggy is slipery and muddy. Your feet sink into the ooze. Its more likely there was a hard, plastic bottom that also sagged and was slippery.

rcocean said...

Funny how people seem to hate her. Guess, there's some anti-white anti-brit bias going on here.

But I like Susan Boyle better. She has a great voice. Boyle's good at belting out songs. She's made one of the few reditions of "Drummer boy" that i stand. Also, good: Amazing Grace

Rollo said...

Venus gave Botticelli the same headaches.

What part of "diva" didn't Vegas understand?

So now I guess it's off to Blackpool for Miss Adele Adkins.

Consider stagnant pool of standing water and all the tricks and special effects thrown in to glamorize it as a metaphor for the current music scene and much else besides.

Sebastian said...

"Hire the Cirque du Soleil folks and call it a day"

True. Lots of water in "O." "O," get it?

Anyway, better than Adele, I'm sure, though I don't think I've ever heard her sing. Even Althouse might like it.

Rollo said...

Adele having much trouble reconciling the lower-middle-class North London Labour girl she was with the hyper-rich hyper-demanding hyper woman she has become. Celebrities are hypocrites who combine all kinds of social concerns and platitudes with a sybaritic, self-centered lifestyle, but not every celebrity can pull it off, for successful hypocrisy and duplicity are arts in themselves. Love you anyway, Adele. Rock (or rather pop) on, girl.

Lyle said...

Search Kyle Dunnigan on YouTube. His impression of Jeff might be the best. Try Goldblum Kyle Dunnigan Bill Maher and Trump.

Ted said...

From what I've read, Adele wanted a simple set design that would leave the focus on her singing. That makes perfect sense, and seems like what her fans would want as well.

Instead of listening to her, they went ahead and hired some famous set designer to put together some big Las Vegas-style extravaganza. Which she found distracting and tacky.

People go to an Adele concert because of her voice and emotionality -- because her singing makes them feel something. Having some big, theatrical production wouldn't add to their enjoyment, it would detract from it. And calling Adele a "diva," just because she realized this and called it out, is both insulting and dumb.

PM said...

On the plus side, if she fell, she fell in water!
Mind the mike, tho.

TheOne Who Is Not Obeyed said...

It would seem she left the brown M&Ms clause out of the contract. Foolish.

Leland said...

Reading Billboard, it seems the issue is more that the set isn't ready due to Covid (and likely supply chain) problems. She isn't cancelling the shows but rescheduling them to allow time to complete the set. Seems like "The Sun" and others were doing clickbait stuff, because they are the media and that's what they do. I still think just put her out there with a microphone and a good sound system and let talent do the rest. However, I'll admit shiny objects and action can sometimes make for a better show, whilst bad effects will definitely ruin a show. I'd say she made the right business call on a hard decision but could have avoided the decision with something simpler.

Kai Akker said...

Taylor Swift would have done this -- after adding a few of her own clever improvements to the whole conception -- and made it an awesome production. People would be talking for weeks about what they saw her do on a crane in Vegas.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Ann Althouse said...

Why weren't her people supervising the set design?

They were probably involved.

Or did they approve a plan that seemed quite different from the thing they made? It might be an interesting contract dispute.

This would be a possibility if she were just coming in for one or two shows. Promoters and venue managers are notorious for cutting cost and not paying attention to tour riders that lay out what's to be expected of them.

While it was generally thought of as a case of Rock Star excess; Van Halen's famous "no brown M&M's" stipulation was actually a method they used to gauge whether a promoter/venue manager had read their tour rider closely. They had a complicated stage set up and some specific power requirements and if they ended up with brown M&M's or didn't get a promoter calling their management saying "WTF?", they knew to be on the look out for potential problems with the venue and double check everything.

Adele, however, was starting a "residency" which meant she would be there doing shows for a couple of months at least and using static sets. They had time to plan this out and work out any differences/make any changes necessary. This is not like she's rolling in for one show, the leaving the next day. So, in this case; yes, she's being a Diva!

Blair said...

Anything involving water, microphones, cables and amplifiers sounds like a death trap to me. I imagine she didn't want to end up like Keith Relf, the Yardbirds singer. Or do anything too tacky, though it is Vegas ffs. Tacky is what people are paying for. And Adele, being the Nickleback of torch singers, should be self aware enough to know what a Vegas residency requires of her.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Hey! In other music news; Neil Young quits Spotify because Joe Rogan!

But, give Neil some credit, he won't whine about lost royalties when no one's able to stream his music. He's no diva!

Harold said...

I think the key takeaway from this whole drama is never buy tickets to see Adele perform. Buy her songs if you like them, but the I'm pretty sure that the odds of her showing up for any given performance are going get progressively lower as her mental health issues continue.

JaimeRoberto said...

For some reason this has me thinking of the Stonehenge scenes in Spinal Tap.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Harold said...

I think the key takeaway from this whole drama is never buy tickets to see Adele perform. Buy her songs if you like them, but the I'm pretty sure that the odds of her showing up for any given performance are going get progressively lower as her mental health issues continue.

She should do a tour with Axl Rose.

tim in vermont said...

Neil Young made some great music in the '70s. I will miss his songs if they are gone.

tim in vermont said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Wait. What? Adele is only 33 years old. Are you serious? I thought she was late 40s early 50s.

loudogblog said...

Ann said: "Why weren't her people supervising the set design?"

I would find it hard to believe that her people weren't involved with the set design. I work at a theme park and EVERYBODY in management has to approve all the designs, from the big shows down to the photo ops out in the park. You get an email asking you to review a design and you get a link to it's location. Then you study it and express, to the group, any concerns that you have.

I think that your other theory, that it didn't look the way they thought it would, is more plausible.

The industry standard for theatrical set and lighting design is a program called, Vectorworks. The program can model the set in 3-D and recreate the actual lighting design in the 3-D viewer. That being said, the images on the computer screen are usually much better looking than the real thing.

rcocean said...

Who is neil young?

My guess is that he's NOT young, but some old boomer.

Rosalyn C. said...

When the story first came out on Adele's Instagram page the official reason for the cancellation was the overwhelming number of cast and crew who had come down with Covid. This explanation was delivered by Adele herself with moving sincerity and a overwhelming torrent of tears. But that was yesterday. Today I'm seeing this.

I don't blame her and I can imagine that the tears were actually real because of the humiliation of cancelling at the last moment -- that's so unprofessional. Really bad, kind of shattering for her. But I blame her manager or management team (or that she didn't realize she needed more help on this project) -- there are too many details and factors for the artist to handle on top of preparing herself musically to perform, and her manager should have dealt with the stagecraft. I don't know that much about the management business but this was a bust.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

rcocean said...

Who is neil young?

He owns the Lionel train company! How can you not have heard of him!

Leland said...

Wait. What? Adele is only 33 years old. Are you serious?

You must not follow Adele at all, her albums are named for her age when she recorded them. She released 31 last November.

Bill Peschel said...

This comment thread is hilarious, with everyone assuming The Sun is reporting honestly.

Bunkypotatohead said...

Why is a young woman worth $200 mil doing a Vegas lounge act?
That place is where old celebrities go to die.