Words: Dionne Domyan-Mudie
Rock legends IRON MAIDEN whose new studio double album "The Book Of Souls" debuted this week at No 4 in South Africa, will make a massively anticipated return in May on their enormous Boeing 747-400 jumbo jet Ed Force One piloted by vocalist Bruce Dickinson and carrying band, crew and stage production and equipment.
Maiden will play two shows: May 18 in Cape Town at the Grand Arena followed by May 21 at the Johannesburg Carnival City Festival Lawns.
Bruce comments; “We cannot wait to get back out on tour. When we start in the USA in late February it will be 19 months since our last show at Sonisphere in the UK so we are raring to go. Maiden thrive on touring and getting out to our fans, it’s what we do best, so it will be a great feeling to board our new Jumbo Ed Force One with the crew and the gear and head round the globe and get back on stage for you guys. I’m especially delighted to be coming to South Africa, as although the band has played here before, it’ll be the first time that Adrian Smith and myself will be touring here as part of Iron Maiden, so we’re really looking forward to seeing all our fans!
“Of course we haven't decided on the set list as yet and won’t until we start rehearsing but we really look forward to playing a number of new songs live, especially as the recording was so much live. However, as it’s been a while since we saw you all, I am sure we will include plenty of older fan favourites too. I think the fans will be delighted by what we have in mind. We are also in the middle of creating the new show and rest assured we are working hard to bring you all something spectacular, something with a lot of heart !!! You certainly deserve it for your patience.“
The support band on The Book Of Souls World Tour will be The Raven Age www.theravenage.org
Tickets go on-sale on Thursday 17 September at 9am from bigconcerts.co.za or Computicket. As usual, there will be an exclusive pre-sale for IRON MAIDEN Fan Club members, details of which can be found on www.ironmaiden.com. Ticket prices range from R510 – R905 in Cape Town and R620 – R905 in Johannesburg.
· The new Ed Force One will transport band, crew and over 12 tonnes of equipment across 6 of the 7 continents of the world
· The band will visit around 35 countries on this tour , flying over 55 thousand miles (88,500km) including first ever visits to China and El Salvador
· Bruce has started his training to qualify as a 747 pilot. He is using a Simulator based at Cardiff Aviation, an aircraft maintenance facility he owns in Wales
· Ed Force One will once again be customised on the outside with the Iron Maiden logo and new album art de-cals. As the 747 is so huge, only minimal modifications will be needed to the interior as all the equipment and production can be carried in the hold without having to modify the plane for freight.