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03 décembre 2005

WORLD CUP 2006: Time to make friends in Berlin

(...) Heller had his work cut out to pull together such a star-studded team. "I went on and on about it to Philippe Decoufle, but he initially said, 'No, no, I've already done that in my life'. So I said to him, just give me three weeks and I'll get back to you. So I got back to him with Peter Gabriel as my 'trophy', and he said yes."(...)

Eno, Gabriel, Peas Set For World Cup Kickoff

Eno is composing a 2006 World Cup anthem using instruments from across the world to form a very different orchestra.

Music director Gabriel promised to "make some noise." Asked why he had signed up, he joked, "It's the same attraction for a musician as for a footballer -- money, sex and drugs."

Germany Plans Star-Studded Opening Gala For World Cup

World Cup host nation Germany has revealed its plans for the cultural extravanganza that will kick-off the soccer spectacular next summer.

The star-studded gala will take place at Berlin's Olympic Stadium on June 7, two days before the 2006 World Cup kicks off. But the organizers, aware of the schmaltzy affairs put on to mark the openings of such events as the Olympics and the Superbowl, want the World Cup event to be a classy affair.

Promising a gala a world away from the parades of superstars and echoes of local themes used at other major sporting events, Andre Heller, the gala's Austrian artistic director, assured the gathered press at the launch that the line-up would be eclectic and contemporary.

"We have an enormous space to fill but we won't do it with banal figures," he said.

Heller, along with French choreographer Philippe Decoufle and a creative team featuring British rock musicians Brian Eno and Peter Gabriel, announced that popular hip hop band The Black Eyed Peas, Algerian singer Cheb Kahled, and American soprano Jessye Norman will be among those providing the music at the first World Cup gala in FIFA's 100-year history.

A first for FIFA

Previous World Cups have held opening ceremonies which typically lasted about an hour immediately before the first match. The 2006 World Cup will start what world governing body FIFA hopes will be a new tradition -- a separate festivity to mark the start of the tournament.

Heller is hoping that French avant-garde choreographer Decoufle brings the creativity and inspiration that made his surreal Cirque du Soleil-style opening and closing ceremonies at the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville such a success.

The show, directed by the Frenchman, featured a polka with braying donkey sounds mixed with fiddles and figures emerging from the sky, including suspended ski jumpers and an angel to put out the flame.

Bildunterschrift: Decoufle's 1992 Cirque de Soleil performance caught Andre Heller's eye.
"I saw ceremonies for 30 years. One was different -- Albertville 92. It was a shock that an artist and not a Disney type was putting on the show," Heller said.

Brian Eno, a former member of Roxy Music who has produced albums by U2 and David Bowie, will compose a 2006 World Cup anthem using instruments from across the world. Former Genesis front man Peter Garbriel will act as musical director.

A procession of World Cup winners

As well as music and dance, the gala will also feature a total of 132 former World Cup winners, including Argentina's 1986 hero Diego Maradona (photo) and Brazil's three-time victor Pele.

"It is like having (Diego) Maradona, Pele, (Johan) Cruyff and (Alfredo) di Stefano all playing for the same team," said Franz Beckenbauer, head of the 2006 World Cup organizing committee at the launch.

Glittering stars from the arts and sports will not be the only ones taking center stage. Approximately 13,000 potential volunteer performers and helpers applied in the first phase of auditions which closed on Nov. 15 with final casting decisions for the approximately 5,000 performing roles to be completed by mid-January.

Around 1,500 other volunteers will be needed to build the extravagant set designs and stage -- and take it all down within 12 hours to spare the grass in Berlin ahead of the city’s first World Cup match on June 12.

The gala promises to be a spectacular event even though its 25 million euros ($29.4 million) budget is dwarfed by the more than 100 million euros needed to put on the ceremonies at the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Tickets for the event will not come cheap with prices ranging from 100 to 750 euros.

02 décembre 2005

Beyond Myst

The adventure continues online: With Uru Live, the online service of Uru, you can explore new ages and areas of the D'ni civilization, unravel new mysteries, participate in the ongoing story, and adventure in a world that continually changes and expands. Exciting new content will be downloaded regularly, providing an adventure experience that is fresh and ever-changing.

GameSpot reports that Peter Gabriel, the multiplatinum singer and former Genesis front man, has agreed to contribute a new song, "Burn You Up, Burn You Down," for Uru: Ages Beyond Myst. Gabriel will also pen an original composition for the next, as-yet-untitled, Myst game.

"I thought it succeeded well in creating a feeling of other worlds in which mystery and imagination were the compelling elements instead of the usual action-packed shoot-'em-ups,"
he said in a statement.

30 novembre 2005

Dream Team

L'équipe artistique de la FIFA le 30 novembre 2005 à Berlin; de g à d: Brian Eno, Mark Fisher, Peter Gabriel, Phillippe Decouflé, Andre Heller

Le Français Philippe Decouflé, célèbre pour sa mise en scène de la cérémonie d'ouverture des jeux Olympiques d'Albertville en 1992, est le chorégraphe du gala de la Fédération internationale de football (FIFA) qui aura lieu à Berlin le 7 juin, deux jours avant le coup d'envoi du Mondial.

Mondial-2006: Philippe Decouflé, chorégraphe du gala de la FIFA le 7 juin

BERLIN (AFP) - Le Français Philippe Decouflé, célèbre pour sa mise en scène de la cérémonie d'ouverture des jeux Olympiques d'Albertville en 1992, est le chorégraphe du gala de la Fédération internationale de football (FIFA) qui aura lieu à Berlin le 7 juin, deux jours avant le coup d'envoi du Mondial. Decouflé, chorégraphe, metteur en scène et danseur, sera le grand ordonnateur aux côtés de l'Allemand Andre Heller de ce gala auquel contribueront notamment les musiciens Brian Eno et Peter Gabriel et la soprano américaine Jessye Norman, ont annoncé les organisateurs mercredi lors d'une conférence de presse à Berlin.

"C'est un peu comme si Maradona, Pelé, Cruyff et Di Stefano jouaient dans la même équipe", s'est enthousiasmé Franz Beckenbauer, le président du comité d'organisation du Mondial-2006. Quelque 5000 interprêtes, danseurs et musiciens participeront au gala de la FIFA d'une durée de 90 minutes qui aura lieu dans le stade olympique de Berlin, ont précisé les organisateurs. La vente mondiale des billets a débuté mercredi avec des prix allant de 100 euros pour les moins chers à 750 euros.

La Coupe du monde 2006 aura lieu du 9 juin au 9 juillet en Allemagne.

29 novembre 2005

Le Gala d'Heller avec 8000 superstars !

À partir du mercredi (midi) Il y aura des billets pour le Show d'ouverture de la coupe du monde de Berlin.

Berlin - lorsque le 7 juin 2006 le soleil se couchera, alors brilleront les étoiles intérieures d'environ 8000 Berlionnoises et Berlinois. Car VOUS serez les réelles STARS du le gala de la Fifa World Cup dans le stade olympique.
Des centaines de millions de personnes suivront dans le monde entier à la télévision la première ouverture du show de la coupe du monde de football . L'initiateur du Gala André Heller promet : "Ce sera une célébration pleine de surprises et un feu d'artifice des sens."

Attention : Dès aujourd'hui à midi on peut acheter des billets pour le mégaévenement Il y a des tickets aux points de vente habituels et sur Internet ( Soyez rapides ! Le Gala pourrait être soldé rapidement...

La Dreamteam des créatifs du debut de vente présente aujourd'hui à Kreuzberg son Dreamteam créatif pour les Gala d'André Heller. En la présence du maire Klaus Wowereit et deux artistes qui ont écrit une histoire de la musique sont aussi attendus Franz Beckenbauer, : le directeur musical du Gala Peter Gabriel (Ex-Genesis, "Sledgehammer") et Brian Eno (Ex-Roxy Music) qui composera la chanson-titre du Gala.

L' américain et Oscarisé Doug Jack se chargera de la Choreographie du show. le Britannique Mark Fisher realisera la mise en scène, il a déjà travaillé pour Pink Floyd, U2 et les Rolling Stones. Un show de Superlatif ouvrira notre fête du football avec "tambours et trompettes" pêle-mêle, attend les Berlinois et leurs hôtes.

André Heller au journal B.Z. : "Le show durera environ 90 minutes et je prie tous les dieux pour que tout se passera bien. Comme thèmes l'Allemagne et Berlin joueront un rôle, naturellement le football et surtout le beau stade WM-Motto "le monde est invité en ami." C'est une chance pour Berlin, Heller ne veut pas de parade de star pure (bien qu'il ai invite des superstars). Pour Berlin la plus grande chance depuis la réunification est de présenter l'ouverture au monde de cette ville."


Heller-Gala mit 8000 Superstars!

Ab Mittwoch (12 Uhr) gibt's Tickets für Berlins WM-Eröffnungs-Show


Berlin - Wenn am 7. Juni 2006 die Sonne untergeht, dann erstrahlen die Sterne vom rund 8000 Berlinerinnen und Berlinern. Denn SIE werden die eigentlichen Stars sein - bei der Fifa World Cup Gala im Olympiastadion.

Hunderte Millionen Menschen werden die erste Eröffnungs Show einer Fußball WM weltweit im TV verfolgen. Gala-Initiator André Heller verspricht: "Es wird ein Fest des Staunens und ein Feuerwerk der Sinne."

Aufgepaßt: Ab heute 12 Uhr kann man Tickets für den Mega-Event kaufen. Karten gibt's an den bekannten Vorverkaufsstellen und im Internet ( Seien Sie schnell! Die Gala dürfte rasch ausverkauft sein...

Kreatives Dreamteam Zum Verkaufsstart stellt André Heller heute in Kreuzberg sein kreatives Dreamteam für die Gala vor. Im Beisein des Regierenden Bürgermeisters Klaus Wowereit und von OK-Chef Franz Beckenbauer werden auch zwei Künstler erwartet, die Musikgeschichte geschrieben haben: Gala-Music-Director Peter Gabriel (Ex-Genesis, "Sledgehammer") und Brian Eno (Ex-Roxy Music), der den Titelsong der Gala komponieren wird.

Die Choreographie der Show übernimmt der amerikanische Oscar-Gewinner Doug Jack. Die Ausstattung entwirft der Brite Mark Fisher, der schon für Pink Floyd, U2 und die Rolling Stones arbeitete.

Die Berliner und ihre Gäste erwartet eine Show der Superlative, die unser Fußballfest mit einem kunterbunten Paukenschlag eröffnet. André Heller zur B.Z.: "Die Show wird rund 90 Minuten dauern und ich bete zu allen Göttern, daß wir alles richtig machen. Als Themen werden Deutschland und Berlin eine Rolle spielen, natürlich der Fußball und vor allem das schöne WM-Motto - Die Welt zu Gast bei Freunden."

Chance für Berlin Heller will keine reine Starparade (obwohl er Superstars einladen wird): "Es wird eine große wunderbare Jam-Session werden, kein niveauloser Musikantenstadl. Und für Berlin ist es die größte Chance seit der Wiedervereinigung, die Weltoffenheit dieser Stadt zu präsentieren."

28 novembre 2005

Angelina Jolie and Peter Gabriel to Host Benefit Gala for WITNESS

Corporate Social Responsibility Press ReleaseProvided by CSRwire

11/28/2005: Press Release from Witness

Angelina Jolie and Peter Gabriel to Host Benefit Gala for WITNESS

Event to highlight WITNESS’ ongoing work to document human rights violations and emphasize the group’s current initiative to secure sustainable peace in Sierra Leone

CSRwire) New York – Academy Award-winning actress Angelina Jolie and musician and activist Peter Gabriel will co-host a benefit gala for WITNESS, the international human rights group, on December 5, 2005 in New York City. The event, to be held at The Supper Club in Times Square, will include performances by folk rock icon Emmylou Harris, legendary performers Nile Rodgers and CHIC, and other special guests.

WITNESS (, the New York-based organization that deploys video and technology to promote human rights causes worldwide, was co-founded in 1992 by Peter Gabriel. Since its founding, WITNESS has partnered with groups in more than 60 countries, bringing often unseen images, untold stories and seldom heard voices to the attention of key decision makers, the media, and the general public — prompting grassroots activism, political engagement, and lasting change.

The December 5th event highlights WITNESS’ work in the West African country of Sierra Leone, where a devastating 11 year conflict, notorious for the rebels’ practice of amputating limbs of civilians, came to an end in 2002. Jolie traveled with WITNESS Executive Director Gillian Caldwell to Sierra Leone in May 2005 and helped secure key commitments from the country’s president to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) recommendations. (The TRC was established as a forum for truth telling, a non-partisan investigative body, and a catalyst for the longer-term process of reconciliation.)

Selections of "Witness to Truth," a companion video to the TRC’s written report (produced by WITNESS), will be screened at the Gala. In addition, Ishmael Beah, a former child soldier from Sierra Leone, will offer his inspirational story of surviving the loss of his family and repeated trauma during the conflict and his hope for lasting peace in Sierra Leone.

The Gala will also showcase Artists Support, a benefit fine art print edition involving internationally known visual artists and photographers such as Olaf Breuning, Fabrice Hyber, Alfredo Jaar, Shirin Neshat, Izhar Patkin, Dayanita Singh, Sebastiao Salgado, and William Wegman. The effort promotes awareness of the WITNESS website as a global meeting place for people interested in promoting human rights and involves the collaboration of two artists born in different parts of the world.

For information on individual tickets or for corporations interested in event sponsorship, visit: or call The WITNESS Benefit office at 888.292.8488.


Date: Monday, November 07

Topic: Rock News

A new Peter Gabriel album might be on the horizon. While he often takes a long time between releases, reports that for the past few months, he's been working on material for a new record that's got a working title of I/O, which stands for "input/output."

He hasn't yet called in the full band, because he said,
"My mental process is so slow that it's not really fair to take that time out of anyone else's life."

Gabriel told that part of what takes him so long to make records is that he has trouble getting the words down on paper:

"I'm much quicker getting the musical ideas than I am sort of sorting out and finishing lyrics, which, to get past my editor, is a lot harder. That's me, I'm afraid. You know, your own sort of quality control, but the point at which you say, 'OK, that's all right to go out. I'm not gonna be embarrassed by that one,' I can do that very quickly with music and very slowly with lyrics."

There's no word on when I/O might come out, but Gabriel is already thinking about a tour, and he said he might preview some of the songs live. He said,
"What I've always wanted to do is finish the songs, get them arranged for the band, tour for a month or so, then record them. That would give me a different type of immediacy -- because sometimes when I work and work on stuff, people feel that it loses some of its flair."

Gabriel's last studio album was UP, which came out in 2002.

His next release is a DVD called Still Growing Up -- Live And Unwrapped. It's due next Tuesday (November 15th).

27 novembre 2005

Peter Gabriel, the Shaman

DVD Review: Peter Gabriel: Still Growing Up Live & Unwrapped

November 23, 2005

Still Growing Up - Live and Unwrapped

Around twenty-five years ago I was working with some pretty esoteric theatre directors. It was a time when experimental theatre people were looking to try and recreate the power and energy of the shaman in the actor. Not, as so many people would think make them a priest or something ridiculous like that, but to give them that sort of authority on stage; the ability to be the focal point for thousands of people.

This director was very down to earth in spite of all his talk about priests and shamanism, and used as his examples the people he called the priests and shamans of our society. He said in terms of what he was talking about, being the focal point of thousands of people that as far as he was concerned Bruce Springsteen was the most powerful shaman or priests in our world right now.

Who else, he said, can walk onto a stage and command the attention of 45,000 plus people. Interestingly enough it was only a couple of years latter that Pope John Paul started doing his huge outdoor Masses, where he would become the focal point for tens of thousands of people. Whatever you may have thought of the man personally he was no fool and he knew what kind of potential power there was to tap into from that type of gig.

What brought all this stuff to mind again was watching the latest Peter Gabriel DVD: Still Growing Up: Live & Unwrapped. This is a follow up release to the 2003 DVD Growing Up Live which was shot on the tour of the same name. The 2005 release is a two disc set: disc one is a record of some the smaller more intimate concerts they did after the main elaborate tour and disc two is a primarily a documentary and interview with Mr. Gabriel about the smaller tour.

Shot in a variety of smaller locations across Europe it's a technically pared down version of the tour that places more emphasis on the performers than on a stage show. At least that's what the promo says; if this is what they consider pared down the main tour must have been incredible.

I haven't seen a picture of Peter Gabriel in years; I stopped following his career around the late eighties when I began to lose interest in pop music for a while, so my first sight of as he looks now was quite startling. The man who I remember as a frenetic bundle of energy, like a coiled spring, has evolved into a rock at the centre of a storm on stage.

Perhaps it's the radical change in his physical appearance in the last fifteen years, rounder and greyer, and the slowing down that age can bring, but now instead of coming across as an entertainer he has the appearance and the demeanour on stage of a monk or guru who is there to impart wisdom and guidance.

He's always been an incredibly intense performer with massive amounts of energy expanded during his performances, but now instead of bouncing all over the place he exudes the same power while standing still. That's not to say he doesn't move anymore and remains fixed in place like a post, but it's no longer necessary for him to be the centre of attention. Whether he's stalking the stage like a large cat, doing some simple choreography with the band, or riding incredible two wheeled standing scooters (as is the case in amazing version of "Games Without Frontiers") he demands attention and commands the stage

I don't think I have seen audiences so riveted and completely in the hand of a performer before. He could just be reading a French introduction to the song he's about to perform and you could hear a pin drop, in an open-air concert. People want to listen to him and share in the experience of his music.

That's the thing that comes across so clearly on the concert disc of this set; Peter Gabriel songs in concert are an experience. They are more than just a band getting up on stage and running through a collection of their hits. Obviously the disc is not able to recreate the atmosphere of being at a live concert, there's almost no way in which to be able to do that. What they have done instead is equally as effective.

We are brought face to face with individual band members; we look into the eyes of Peter Gabriel as he sings. We are given access to the raw emotion that a performer generates while on stage through the magnificent camera work and brilliant editing of director Hamish Hamilton.

They made a risky choice with this film in the way in which they decided to present the songs. Instead of having a song from this venue, and then another song from that venue, they've inter-cut venues in the songs. You could be watching one song, but it's footage from four different venues.

The potential of this being a confusing mess is quite high, but they have managed to bring it off with great success and actually increasing the impact of songs through showing the variety of staging. I don't know if they've used only one audio feed for the song or have edited the sound and the picture of each excerpt into the final result. But whatever they have done the sound is impeccable.

The material on this disc spans the breadth of his career, form "Solsbury Hill" and "Games Without Frontiers" and onwards. "Games Without Frontiers" is the song where you first begin to realise the connection this man has with his audiences. Even while he and his daughter, who sings harmony vocals, are propelling themselves around the stage on these two-wheeled standing scooters, he brings the crowd into the singing of the refrain "Je sans frontiers" (I'm without frontiers) seemingly effortlessly.

In some ways his control over the crowd is actually quite terrifying as it's a reminder of how easy it is for a charismatic figure to control large numbers of people in a mass rally type situation. His closing song, "Biko", the memorial to Steven Biko, South African activist killed in the seventies by the police, is almost chilling. With its rhythmic chanting of the name Biko the crowd actually continues singing the song after Gabriel has physically left the vicinity ( we see him driving away while the drummer is on stage playing the beat and the audience is still singing away)

The second disc of the set is a documentary of the concerts seen in the first disc. Footage from the concerts, and others, and the travel between gigs are interspersed with an interview with Peter Gabriel. While some it deals with just the specifics of the tour, he also talks in a general manner about his work.

He is at great pains to stress how unimportant he or any pop musician really is. Lines like "I don't buy this genius stuff, Einstein was a genius ..." or
"Anybody can be an artist...Put a gun to somebody's head and tell them they have a year to produces some great piece of art or the gun will go off I'm sure they will...being an artist is about being exposed to the right kind of people and atmosphere...not just about talent"

There was no false modesty in any of those statements, just the perspective of a man who had his feet firmly on the ground, and is refusing to get caught up in the hoopla surrounding what he does for a living. Perhaps this is why he is so compelling when he is on stage. He genuinely appreciates that he has been given the opportunity to do on a full time basis what millions would love to do.

Still Growing Up Live & Unwrapped is a great release, especially if you are someone like me who has never had the opportunity to see Peter Gabriel in concert. He is one of the most enigmatic and potent pop performers alive today. This two disc set not only lets you sample that power but gives you insight into what makes him tick and some behind the scenes look at touring. This is a great release for those who have never seen him live on disc before, or even if you just haven't seen him in a while. There's been quite a change.

Shakira's world

Shakira's world

In the languages she speaks and the melting-pot music she makes, the pop star personifies what it means to go global.


Oral Fixation's first song, "How Do You Do," is directed at the Almighty, but it's more accusatory than reverential. "How many people die and hurt in your name?" the Catholic-schooled singer asks. "Hey, does that make you proud, or does it bring you shame?"

The first single, "Don't Bother," sends the message that hell hath no fury like Shakira scorned. Feeling threatened by a too-perfect rival who is "fat free" and "practices tai chi," she lashes back in a tart, Alanis Morissette voice. In the video she hits her wayward lover where it hurts: She drives his car to the dump and has it crushed.

Oral Fixation is full of songs of self-examination, too. The cloying, middle-of-the-road ballad "Your Embrace" wonders,
"What's the use of a 24-inch waist if you don't touch me?"

On "Costume Makes the Clown" she marries stadium-rock crunch, a hooky chorus dressed up with strings, and lyrics about the unreality of her own image: "Told you I felt lucky with my humble breasts / Well I don't." She adds:
"I'm not a virgin, but I'm not the whore you think / And I don't always smell like strawberries and cream."

And for the album closer, "East Timor," Shakira takes a bubbling dance groove based on the Peter Gabriel song of that name to criticize her own self-absorption: "It's OK if the planet splits in three," she sings, sarcastically.
" 'Cause I'll keep selling records, and you've got your MTV."

Shakira may be standing on top of the world, but she's not about to pretend that everything's right with it.