Before reaching millions with their music, the Avett Brothers began their journey in Concord – and this New Year’s Eve, they performed live at Time Warner Cable Arena.
The excitement was there from the beginning – and fans didn’t have to wait until midnight to see a ball drop.
About 30 minutes before their set began, the largest of dozens of suspended disco balls plummeted to the stage – without an appropriate New Year’s Eve countdown.
“My wife Allison looked at me because we heard this huge boom and didn’t know what it was,” attendee Kerry Hoffman said. “This huge disco ball had fallen through the stage.”
Reports had the ball weighing anywhere from 350 to 600 pounds. The ball crushed through a section of the stage where members could have been performing had their set already begun.
Luckily, it hadn’t.
“It seemed kind of surreal,” attendee Jeremy Smith said. “You were wondering if they were going to have any type of delay or what they were going to do with the ball but I think it was too big – I think they just left it there.”
Alexis Marley, a fan who runs the Twitter account @AvettProblems, immediately took to social media where they snapped pictures and made posts.
“Most people didn’t actually see it, most people just saw the aftermath,” Marley said. “It’s really great that it did not hurt anybody at all but it did take out a chunk of the stage…the ball actually stayed kind of on the ground in that part of the stage that collapsed while the show went on – which actually ended up being cool because it made for some cool lighting stuff at the end.”
Marley wasn’t the only one who took to social media.
“When I saw it, the first thing I said was I need to get on Twitter fast,” Hoffman said.
Twitter was swarmed with posts from every angle of the arena and fans chimed in on the unwelcoming stage prop. The show went on with the band playing as if the stage were intact – never bringing it up to the audience, according to several attendees.
“It was this huge disco ball – how could you just ignore it?” Hoffman said.
The band’s manager, Dolph Ramseur, said to My Fox Carolinas in a phone interview that it was “no joking about it whatsoever,” and that they were just relieved that “from fans to crew members, everybody was safe.”
Over 13,000 fans attended the concert and Marley says it was the “Avett-way” for the night to move on, as-is.
“What could have turned into a really big issue and a huge delay, they just kind of cleaned it up and went about their business as usual – which is kind of the ‘Avett-way.’ Things happen and we move on and we keep going. Most people were just very concerned with everyone’s safety.”