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Revive the concert

Letter to the Editor | Monday, March 31, 2008

Bored on a cold day, watching UCLA blow Xavier out of the water, I was listening to music on my computer to make the game go by faster. I was listening to Bruce Springsteen when I wondered, when was the last time Bruce played at Notre Dame?

Let’s just go this far, most readers of the Observer weren’t born yet. So I decided to look into the online archives of the Observer to find a mention of the Boss, and one completely blew me away.

Just over four years ago, on Feb. 9, 2004, there was an article labeled: “University rejects concert.” I first thought, “they canceled a potential Bruce concert!” I then reasoned with myself that there probably wasn’t enough money. I continued to search on, but upon returning to “University rejects concert,” I discovered a horrible incident.

According to the article, Norte Dame SUB has planned potentially the greatest concert in Notre Dame history – even greater than the 2001 U2 concert. U2 and Bruce Springsteen in the Stadium.

Upon reading this, I choked on my Arizona Iced Tea and did a double take. I was shocked that SUB could pull something like this together, but once again I thought, “It must be a pipe dream and there is not enough funding.” As I read on, I discovered that SUB had raised $250,000 over the estimated $1.25 million required for this show. Not only was money not a problem, but the reason for the concert was not just the pleasure of Notre Dame, St. Mary’s, and Holy Cross students, but for a greater good: all proceeds from the concert were going to fund the AIDS effort in Africa.

After skimming it, I read deeper into the article to find out why this epic endeavor was never carried out. I found it: University spokesman Matt Storin said the proposal was not approved by the administration. “Several university officers considered this proposal and decided that we did not have the resources or personnel to pull off an endeavor of this size within the necessary time frame,” Storin said.

At this I became very upset. I mean, a university that has enough security, personnel, parking, and other resources to maintain order on the six to seven home game weekends each year can’t provide enough for a one-time concert that would cater to far fewer patrons? Notre Dame had a chance to host one of the greatest concerts of the decade and the administration balks.

I also wonder what happened to SUB continuing to fight for this endeavor. At the end of the article there is a mention of how this idea will come to be, but there have been no echoes of it coming to fruition, not a mention in the rest of the Observer archives.

In the end, I can only stare back at the University’s missed chance to host two musical talents that have combined to sell more than 200 million albums. The chance of a lifetime spurned.

I hope that SUB has great events in motion for the 2008-09 season, but I also hope this can get gears turning again because settling for one hit wonders and alternative rock shouldn’t be the highlights of a year

Tim Staub


Dillon Hall

Mar. 30