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Yes in the Round, Tormato Tour

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by telecopy, Dec 3, 2014.

  1. telecopy


    Dec 6, 2009
    I stumbled on this video, and it got me to thinking.. How in the world did they do this?
    Did anybody here see Yes "in the round"?
    Did they just walk though the audience to get to the stage? Or just appear in a cloud of fairy dust? LOL!
    Where were their stagehands and techs?
    I could understand a permanent "arena theatre" stage in a playhouse. But this mess was trucked all over. It was spinning around for crying out loud! How did the cables not get all tangled up like a phone cord does? LOL!
    How did they do this logistically?
    I like the little glimpse of the stage under the house lights prior to the show.
    I think this video, though kind of poor, is pretty fascinating. How such a huge-selling band could have so little professional-quality video footage surviving is such a shame.
    NealBass likes this.
  2. NealBass

    NealBass Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2014
    I saw them at Maple Leaf Gardens in '79 ( I still have my stub and photos). It's either hard to see in the video you posted, or they cut it.

    What I saw that night was; They entered by the goalie end of the area (the Zamboni entrance). BAM! A very loud single note hit, from the Close Encounters theme. When the note hit, a blasting white light came on behind the band, creating silhouettes (a la the Aliens, coming down the ramp of their space-ship in Close Encounters). Maple Leaf Gardens had set up railings on the floor level (I was in the Red Section), that created a path to the stage. The blasting light stayed on as you saw the band walking to the stage. It was remarkable how much it looked like the movie. Then the band went up some steps to the stage and all went dark. Then BAM!, a second huge note from the Close Encounters theme. By this time, Rick Wakeman was also playing the note on his keyboards. Then Rick plays the note over and over; BAM! BAM! BAM! BAM! BAAAAAAM! Then the band went into the song Siberian Khatru. What an entrance! It was like they had just stepped off the 'Mother-ship', to play for us, lol.

    Also, at certain points of the show, the lighting rig over their heads came down like separate flower petals (I'm a little hazy on the details, for some reason).;)

    As for how they transferred all the cabling, that's a question for better Electrical Engineers, than I.

    Stage hands and techs were under the stage, I believe.

    Lastly, Rick Wakeman once joked about the 'round / rotating' stage. He said something like "One night, in the middle of the show, I noticed the first 3 rows were empty (?). I asked the Manager why that was and the Manager told me that the motors that rotate the stage were broken. The manager had the first 3 rows of people in the audience, get under he stage...and had them all pushing, for the rest of the concert! Lol. :laugh:

    PS: A guy on the Yesworld site once printed the set-list for every night of that tour. The Toronto show was the only night of the tour that they did the song Close to the Edge. My favorite Yes song. It was, as Jon Anderson would say....often...., 'Magical'.

    Last edited: Dec 3, 2014
  3. I saw Yes in the round. Twice!

    The path through the crowd that led to the stage was right next to our seats. I touched Chris Squire's shoulder as the group ran through on their way to the stage. I was just a kid.

    Great shows.
    NealBass likes this.
  4. NealBass

    NealBass Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2014
    This clip shows the entrance a bit better;

    Yes Live In Philadelphia (1979) Part 1- Siberian Khatru

    Last edited: Dec 3, 2014
  5. telecopy


    Dec 6, 2009
    Out-fricking-standing! Hell, I like you! You can come over to my house and __ my sister!
  6. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Didn't see them back on the Tormato tour, but I did a few years ago, in Cohasset, Massachusetts, when Benoit David was singing with them. The stage there was in the round and spinning too, and they entered through the audience. They were pretty cramped on a small circular stage, very little room to move around. The place was about a 2000-seater, so with the crowd in the round it made for a very intimate show. Obviously they were much bigger in the 70s, though.

    I wonder if it's bootleg. It seems to cut off pretty often, like someone's got to replace their three-minute rolls of film. Yes was bigger in the 70s, but maybe not so big that people wanted to see a Yes concert broadcast on TV and not too many people had VCRs yet. There wouldn't be much incentive to investing in a professional video production.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2014
  7. NealBass

    NealBass Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2014
    I remember another comment about the 'rotating' stage. Someone (maybe Chris Squire) said: "The rotating stage was tricky. Every night, at the end of the show, we had to rotate the stage in reverse, to un-tangle all the wiring!" Lol.
    pjbassist and tangentmusic like this.
  8. Richland123


    Apr 17, 2009
    I saw quite a few concerts at the rotating stage at Ontario Place in Toronto where everybody sat around looking down at the stage. What a cool place for concerts that was.
    PillO and NealBass like this.
  9. silvertone


    Nov 6, 2007
    SF, CA
    I saw Yes in the Round at Madison Square Garden in '79 - '84 and it never failed to rock - though I'd have to say the Trevor Rabin Drama Tour was way less worthy then the earlier shows.
    I also saw them in the Round at Oakland Coliseum in the early '90s, At the Warfield with their Russian Keyboard player and at the Tank in San Jose.

    Always a great, trippy concert experience with stellar musicianship and fantastic dynamics - haven't seen the new iteration but being a Jon Anderson fan I don't see the point - though I know I'd like it.

    As usual - the earliest impressions were the most vivid. The good old days were....
    NealBass likes this.
  10. tangentmusic

    tangentmusic A figment of our exaggeration

    Aug 17, 2007
    Yep - I saw the Tormato "in the round tour" at the Long Beach Arena in SoCal.

    It was truly an innovative stage design for the time.

    When it started to slowly rotate the crowd went nuts.
    Then, all of a sudden, it stopped in the middle of a song.
    We thought it broke down.

    Then it started to rotate in the opposite direction. Crowd goes nuts again.

    They only negative aspect of it for me was when you wanted to see Squire or Howe play a particular part and they were on the other side with their backs to you!
    pjbassist and NealBass like this.
  11. telecopy


    Dec 6, 2009
    You're probably right. There is the Yessongs video. It's ok. I don't like the added footage of plankton, etc.
  12. telecopy


    Dec 6, 2009
    I saw them recently at a local casino. Pretty small production, compared to their heyday. But it was cool. They play their songs at a slower tempo now. Still exciting seeing Chris's rig and watching him from a few feet away. But, the bass was really, really over the top in the mix. His signature sound was a little overbearing at times.
  13. I saw Yes "in the round" in Denver in Spring 1979.

    I do not remember how they got on stage. Actually I don't remember anything from that concert, other than being there physically, and that it was Yes, and the stage was round and rotated...
  14. Bob_Ross

    Bob_Ross Supporting Member

    Dec 29, 2012
    I saw the Tormato tour at the Boston Garden in 1979. 6th row seats! Great show.

    I remember reading a similar description of the tech required for that rotating stage, but from a more production-oriented interview -- probably from an old issue of Mix or REP, so maybe from one of the audio engineers or production managers -- which basically confirmed they had stagehands walking back & forth in circles carrying the cable slack.

    And apparently that's still a more cost-effective solution than building a stage with multiconductor "brushes" to carry high- and low-voltage wiring from the stationary to the rotating section, because as recently as Peter Gabriel's Growing Up tour they also used the team of roadies hauling huge cable bundles in circles underneath the stage!
    NealBass likes this.
  15. gwangi

    gwangi Supporting Member

    Jul 4, 2009
    Forbidden Valley
    I know I'm resurrecting a old thread but I saw Yes on the Tormato Tour in Denver, Colorado in McNichols Arena in I think it was 1978 but could have been 1979 but anyways it was in-the-round and it was a KILLER concert.
  16. farace


    Jul 9, 2016
    Connecticut USA
    I saw them in the round in New Haven in early September of 1978. Geez, almost forty years now.
    tangentmusic likes this.
  17. biguglyman


    Jul 27, 2017
    Rochester, NY
    Saw them in the round back then too in Rochester, NY. They entered through the crowd. When they left some ******* stepped on then grabbed Wakeman's cape. They (I assume at Rick's request) refused to come back out for an encore. Can't say as I blame them. From what I can still remember (very little) it was a great show.
  18. kittywithabanjo

    kittywithabanjo Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2014
    Coquitlam. BC
    I saw them in the round in the 90s. Still sticks with me how fantastic Jon Anderson's voice is.
  19. bobba66


    May 18, 2006
    Arlington, Texas
    Saw the in the round at the old Reunion Arena in Dallas. Chris played his "Amazing Grace" bass solo.:woot:
  20. heatheroo1


    Dec 14, 2009
    Ephrata, PA

    I believe I was at this show..........

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