Wembley Stadium

Music Live at Wembley' 86 Queen (1992)
Nine tons of equipment, six computers to manage the light shows, fifteen cameras to immortalize the show... The figures for Queen's landmark concert at Wembley Stadium in 1986 are staggering. When Freddie Mercury, Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon took the stage that night, none of them was really aware that together they were about to give a historic show.
Wembley Stadium
Wembley Stadium by foundin_a_attic. Wikimedia.

Queen never made money on tour until 1986 – we always spent too much on the show.

Brian May

Queen starts her set after performances by INXS, The Alarm and Status Quo. The stadium is full. The arena is widely regarded as the most famous in the UK, yet it has seen some of the most unifying performers in history. The most important football matches were also played there. Queen, for her part, had already trodden these boards a few months earlier, in 1985, for the Live Aid organised by Bob Geldof. The first notes resound while the sun is still down. It is in these moments that the photo of Freddie Mercury, more iconic than ever, which can be admired on the packaging of the album, is taken by Neal Preston. The set list is formidable. The four members of Queen even appeared above the crowd in the form of balloons bearing their likenesses. Brian May, Freddie Mercury, John Deacon and Roger Taylor have long since become impervious to pressure, despite a somewhat strange atmosphere within the band, and behave like the stage beasts they are. Not a note out of place, precise playing and, of course, legendary songs.

Already there are rumours that Freddie Mercury is about to come out of the closet. Some tabloids suggest that he has contracted AIDS. However, the frontman’s excellent form belies all those inclined to give credence to the rumours. At the end of the concert, the rock stars invited their friends and family to the Kensington Roof Gardens for a party, the cost of which was estimated at over £80,000. The final touch to an evening like no other. Queen gave two concerts at Wembley on July 11th and 12th, followed by Manchester, Cologne, Vienna, Budapest, Fréjus, Barcelona, Madrid, Marbella and Stevenage in England. It is there, in the famous Knebworth Park, that the band gives its final performance in its original formation. Thereafter, weakened, Freddie Mercury continues to record, solo or with his comrades of always, but does not go on stage any more. On November 23 1991, the singer wrote a statement from his bed admitting that he had AIDS. He died less than 24 hours later.


The 1986 Wembley concert saw guitarist and keyboardist Spike Edney join the band on stage, bringing the number of musicians to six.

Queen at Wembley in 1986
Queen live at Wembley 86′. All rights reserved Parlophone/Hollywood.

Wembley Stadium

A true British legend, Wembley Stadium has seen some of the greatest artists perform at some of the world’s greatest concerts and has also been the venue for many sporting events.

On April 28, 1923, the Wembley Stadium was inaugurated for the British Empire Exhibition of 1924. In 1948, the Olympic Games were held there, then in 1966... Learn more about Wembley Stadium

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By Gilles Rolland

Friday, November 19, 2021

Passionné de cinéma, de rock and roll, de séries TV et de littérature. Rédacteur de presse et auteur des livres Le Heavy Metal au cinéma, Paroles de fans Guns N' Roses, Paroles de fans Rammstein et Welcome to my Jungle : 100 albums rock et autres anecdotes dépareillées. Adore également voyager à la recherche des lieux les plus emblématiques de la pop culture.

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