And Finally Gigs & Festivals Releases

Britney announces Vegas residency with shambolic desert press conference

By | Published on Wednesday 18 September 2013

Britney Spears

Britney Spears is going to play 50 ‘greatest hits’ shows at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas over the course of two years, starting on 27 Dec. Ticket prices will start at $59, and they will go on general sale on 20 Sep. Oh, and her new album will be out on 3 Dec.

And there, ladies and gentlemen, are the three sentences it took an hour and a half to say in possibly the most shambolic press conference of all time yesterday. For some reason, it was decided that this should be announced first thing in the morning in the middle of the Nevada desert.

Partly this was so that Britney could give a live interview on TV show ‘Good Morning, America’, partly it was because, well you have to do something, don’t you? I don’t actually know what Britney said in that interview though, because I was too busy glued to the incredible live stream on her official website.

Thanks to Nevada being three hours behind New York, where ‘GMA’ is filmed, live stream host Courtney Friel was clearly lacking enough sleep and grew increasingly delirious throughout the broadcast. After an hour of filming a few hundred Britney fans standing in the dark in the desert and interviewing the odd key figure involved, basically filling time, the star of the show finally arrived. She walked down a red carpet (wearing boots, because of all the sand, we were informed by Friel), did a three minute interview for ‘GMA’ (which we couldn’t hear on the live stream) with her back to her waiting fans, then got back in her car and drove off.

Here is where things got really compelling. Britney had apparently been hit by motion sickness in the helicopter on the flight to the event (hence her hasty departure), but Friel, and apparently the rest of the crew, seemed convinced that she was going to come back. Cue time filling of epic proportions by a woman who is increasingly succumbing to the effects of the dangerous combination of forced enthusiasm and no sleep.

There will be a sunset at some point, she informed us several times. “THERE’S A DRONE”, she screamed shortly before the broadcast was called to a halt. And throughout, she insisted that Britney was coming back, no matter how apparent it became that this was not the case. At one point she even interviewed the editor of a Britney fansite about how great it had been for Britney’s fans to see their idol, even though they pretty much hadn’t.

As you can tell, the live stream was infinitely more interesting than the announcement itself. And PRAISE THE LORD, Gawker has edited together highlights of this wondrous broadcast for us all to enjoy (though I’m still holding out for a Blu-ray release of the whole thing).