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10 Stages of a gig

Updated on April 7, 2014

Stage 1: The artists announce a new tour

This is the first stage as the artist in question announces a new tour. This usually comes shortly after a new album. This announcement has been expected but the excitement levels are still incredibly high. The excitement levels are starting to build and you are already planning the whole thing out in your head.

Stage 2: You find out one of the dates is close to you

You have already planned out the travel plans. You would have traveled a lot further to see them but this time you were in luck and they are within an hour of your house so you just have to go as to not miss up what will be the opportunity of a life time. Close has a sense of ambiguity to it as you probably would have traveled half ways across the country just to see this artist. You check the announcement and notice that they have decided to play at a venue that is near you, the excitement levels build form hereon in.

Stage 3: The wait to buy the tickets

You frantically search and save just to gain the correct amount of money that you need to buy these tickets with. You are searching underneath couches and other pieces of furniture as these tickets are more expensive than you had imagined and you know that they will sell out as soon as they go on sale. Within 10 minutes they will probably all be gone. The stress levels are slowly starting to rise. The day that they go on sale you already have a game plan to how you will tackle this challenge of buying these tickets. You have four computers online and all of them are in the waiting room of the website that you are planning on buying these tickets from.

Stage 4: The joy of having successfully purchased the tickets

This has been a long time in the making, you have successfully acquired the precious tickets. After repeated presses of the refresh button you managed to get through the necessary page. No time was wasted in giving over your payment details to get these tickets. Within minutes of the tickets selling out, many of them are on ticket re-sale websites at triple the face value so money was saved here. This is where the long countdown begins.

Stage 5: The long countdown to the gig

After purchasing the tickets you now have what feels like one of the longest time in your life. It may only be a few weeks or months away but that time never seems to move. You download an app on your phone that keeps you up to date on the number of days left until the gig. The countdown app on your phone never seems to move and it always seems an eternity away but eventually the waiting time is up and the excitement kicks in.

The sunrise brings with it the arrival of the day of the gig.
The sunrise brings with it the arrival of the day of the gig. | Source

Stage 6: Day of the gig

Waking up with the jubilant joy that a young child has on Christmas morning. The waiting all seems worth it. The day feels a bit dream like. You asked yourself whether this day would come but after what seems like forever the day is finally here. All day you cannot concentrate thinking about the plan of action for the evening ahead and discussing what will feature on the setlist. The journey to the venue is another obstacle that is successfully overcome. The plans that were set up months ago have ran smoothly without a glitch and you arrive at the venue successfully and on time.

Arriving at the venue fills you with anticipation and excitement.
Arriving at the venue fills you with anticipation and excitement. | Source

Stage 7: Waiting outside the venue

You arrive at the venue with the swarms of other fans that are all wearing similar band shirts or are about to buy one inside the venue. You can feel the buzz of excitement amongst all the other people that are all equally as excited to see the artist live, some for the first time others for the 21st time but you all have one thing in common, you are all fans of the same music and there is no better feeling.

Stage 8: The support acts

This is a predicament sometimes. Some days the support acts will be brilliant and other days they will simply be an artist that is pretty darn awful. Whatever they are like it doesn’t put a downer on the evening. The good ones stand out and the bad ones get suppressed by the mind. They seemingly go on for a while and the tension builds when they finish and the roadies come out and set up the stage for the main act. The crowd are slowly getting restless as they know that the artist that they have all come to see is only minutes away from coming on stage. Everyone in the crowd is waiting with batted breath.

Stage 9: The moment you’ve been waiting for

This is it, the light ambient building music comes to an end and the house lights drop. All this waiting and this is it. The crowd begin to cheer louder and louder until the main act comes on stage and when they do everyone screams in sheer excitement. This has been the moment that everyone has been waiting for. All that waiting is now worth it and this is why. They play on and on with the crowd joining in with the songs and everyone is having one of the best evenings of their lives. It all goes far too quickly though, seemingly as soon as they have come on they go off. It’s not all over though, the crowd cheer loud enough and they come out to play an encore and they finish with some of their best songs. The whole night has gone by far too quickly as if it all happened in a split second. It may have gone quickly but it left some great memories. All of the best songs were played and you simply have no complaints. Afterwards you always say that they were better live than they are on their albums. This is a given as it is rarely that they are worse live than their albums.

Tonight's ticket is added to the pile of other tickets amassed over time.
Tonight's ticket is added to the pile of other tickets amassed over time. | Source

Stage 10: Post-gig depression

The journey home is a solemn one as it is a low after such an epic high that the gig was. Everyone discusses their favourite song of the night and how good the act was. The ticket and possibly the shirt that you have bought, if you decided to purchase one, are the only few mementoes that you have from this epic evening. Upon arrival at home all you can do is put your ticket away with the others that you have kept from previous gigs and head off to sleep. The next day is when the post-gig depression really hits. People will ask you what it was like and you will tell them how epic it was. There is something missing, you no longer have anything to looks forwards too for a while. The gig is over and you cannot go back and enjoy it again. You tell yourself that you won’t see that act ever again. The hope has gone for now. This is until one of your other favourites acts releases more new music and the cycle repeats itself all over again.

Summary of gig stages

Stage of Gig
Stage 1
The artists announce a new tour
Stage 2
One of the dates is close to you
Stage 3
The wait to buy the tickets
Stage 4
The joy of purchasing the ticket
Stage 5
The long countdown to the gig
Stage 6
Day of the gig
Stage 7
Waiting outside the venue
Stage 8
The support acts
Stage 9
The main event
Stage 10
Post-gig depression

What is your favorite stage of a gig?

Best stage of a gig?

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