He has tackled world poverty and launched the biggest rock tour in the world, but even Bono can't escape the need for a good chiropractor. U2 has postponed its June 27 concert at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis along with its entire North American summer tour so its superstar frontman can recuperate from emergency back surgery. Makeup dates are not expected until 2011.
The Irish band's "360 Degree Tour" was to be the first concert at the new University of Minnesota football stadium -- and it still will be, even if it doesn't happen until next summer, as university officials expect.
"We wanted [U2] to be the first and really give our stadium a strong reputation, and that is still the plan," said university spokesman Dan Wolter, pointing to heavy discussions with tour promoter Live Nation on Tuesday. "A huge amount of planning went into this already, so obviously there's disappointment here. But we're confident it will work out in the end."
U2 kicked off its mega-sized tour last summer to mostly rave reviews and fast sellouts. It went on to be the top-grossing tour of 2009 even with an abbreviated run, earning about $123 million.
The 50,000 tickets for the TCF Bank Stadium concert sold out in two hours last November and have been in high demand in the secondary ticket-sales market ever since.
"It was the biggest show of the summer for sure," said Brian Obert, co-founder of Twin Cities broker company Ticket King, which is telling customers to sit tight and hold onto tickets for the 2011 makeup date. "This tour was so expensive to put together, there's too much money that stands to be lost if they don't make up the shows."
All told, U2 postponed 16 concerts scheduled June 3 to July 19. The tour would not resume until Aug. 6 in Turin, Italy. Because most of the U.S. dates were in football or baseball stadiums, organizing the makeup itinerary will be complicated by teams' schedules.
Bono had to undergo surgery after he was injured preparing for the tour. Doctors' reports from Munich, Germany, said the singer was in severe pain last week with partial paralysis in his lower leg. He suffered a serious tear in the ligament and a herni- ated disc, frag- ments of which entered his spinal cord. Recovery time will be at least eight weeks.
Chris Riemenschneider • 612-673-4658