When Tyler did his first song and we had to raise the curtain, you could hear the roar. “
For the first time in 15 months, live music is returning across the country after the global coronavirus pandemic ravaged the industry. Billboard‘S “My First Show Back” is a series dedicated to sharing stories from across the touring ecosystem about what is happening now, what has been changed forever and what will never change.
In this article, Ground Branch Touring’s Henri Bordeaux talks about helping creator Tyler return to the stage for three surprise shows in Los Angeles, Dallas and New York (June 29-July 1). As tour director for Tyler (as well as Olivia Rodrigo), Bordeaux discusses reopening the venue, the unmistakable roar of a live crowd, and what he’s doing to help students who have lost a year of learning in the field of live music.
We did three shows in three days. All were secret shows – all were innuendo. We did The Roxy on Sunset with a capacity of 500. Trees in Dallas had a capacity of 750, then the Music Hall in Williamsburg with about 600 seats. In every city, fans weren’t sure what was going on until a certain point of the day. They received a text that said, “You have been chosen for a special event. Bring your vaccination record and ID. The fans arrived and they checked the ID cards and the vaccination cards, the fans got bracelets. A few hours went by, then they got another text with the location and when to be there.