Irish rock band U2 have announced a Las Vegas residency which will take place at the new MSG Sphere at the Venetian, which is set to open this year.
Achtung Baby Live at the Sphere will begin this autumn, but exact dates have not yet been revealed. The band shared a trailer during last night (Sunday)’s Super Bowl LVII announcing the residency.
U2 will be the first act to perform at the new 17-500-seat venue, which was due to open in 2021, but was delayed until this year. The Madison Square Garden Company (MSG) brought in AECOM as the main contractor to build the venue in 2019.
The band confirmed that drummer Larry Mullen Jr will not being accompanying Bono, the Edge and Adam Clayton as he is taking time out to undergo and recover from surgery this year. Instead, drummer Bram van den Berg will take his spot for the residency.
In a statement, U2 said: “It’s going to take all we’ve got to approach the Sphere without our bandmate in the drum seat, but Larry has joined us in welcoming Bram van den Berg who is a force in his own right.
“The Sphere show has been in the works for a long time. We don’t want to let people down, least of all our audience… the truth is we miss them as much as they appear to miss us… our audience was always the fifth member of the band. Bottom line, U2 hasn’t played live since December 2019 and we need to get back on stage and see the faces of our fans again. And what a unique stage they’re building for us out there in the desert… We’re the right band, Achtung Baby the right album, and the Sphere the right venue to take the live experience of music to the next level… That’s what U2’s been trying to do all along with our satellite stages and video installations, most memorably on the Zoo TV Tour, which ended in Tokyo 30 years ago this fall.
“The Sphere is more than just a venue, it’s a gallery and U2’s music is going to be all over the walls.”
The Edge added: “The beauty of the Sphere is not only the ground-breaking technology that will make it so unique, with the world’s most advanced audio system, integrated into a structure which is designed with sound quality as a priority; it’s also the possibilities around immersive experience in real and imaginary landscapes. In short, it’s a canvas of an unparalleled scale and image resolution and a once-in-a-generation opportunity. We all thought about it and decided we’d be mad not to accept the invitation.”