Hanson at the Beacon Theatre
                          by Ashley Poma     

Hey There! Ashley Poma here to give you the details of the greatest adventure of my life (so far). On Wednesday, August 27th, my mom, my friend Tara Ainsworth and I left my home town of Charles Town, WV at 5:30 pm and headed for the Beacon Theatre in New York City (4 to 6 hours away), to see the greatest band in the world, HANSON! They were scheduled to perform live on Thursday, August 28th! We drove until around 8:30 pm and then got a motel room somewhere in Pennsylvania, it was like in "The Middle of Nowhere", and got some rest. We left the motel at 4:30 am and arrived in Manhattan by around 6:30 am.  We drove to a parking garage near 45th Street, parked the car, hailed a cab, and ended up in front of the Beacon Theatre by around 7:00 or 7:30 am. There were like 20 girls standing outside the theatre and I knew then that we would get a free ticket to get in. According to HansonHitz and Hansonline they were giving away free tickets to the first 2,000 fans. Some guy at the theatre said that Mercury Records were only giving away tickets to the first 200 people. Evidently Z100 in NYC had tickets to give away, too.  The guy at the theatre said they'd hand the tickets out at 11:00 am. At 10:15 am we received our tickets. The concert was supposed to start at 4:00 pm.

At about 1:00 pm, HANSON's security guards came out and started revving up the crowd. My mom asked them to pose for a picture with us and they did (the one guard was in fact, the infamous "Jason". He's pretty kewl for an older guy. The other guard said that he used to play football for WVU. He also quietly informed my mom that HANSON would be arriving for a sound check at 2:00 pm, and that they'd be entering from the side.

We got out of line and went to the side entrance of the Beacon Theatre, but had to stand behind a barricade. There were already some girls waiting there with flowers and gifts, but we still had a good place to stand.  My mom was standing outside the barricade and the next thing you know, this big 2 toned blue van pulls up and the guards yelled for my mom to get out of the way - so she went around the side of the van and who do you think she saw getting out? None other than those three talented
heartthrobs from Tulsa.  She took all kinds of pix of them.

When they came around the side of the van to enter theatre, Isaac walked through first. Tay and Zac followed behind him, walking side by side.  Zac was holding on to Tay's shirt (I guess he's scared to death of crowds since the incident at their Paramus Park Mall appearance).  I was totally amazed. There was HANSON, like almost 4 feet away from me.

Well anyway, we went back around to the front of the theatre and, of course, lost our place in line. Oh well!  We still had our tickets!  I guess it was around 4:00 pm or 4:30 pm that HANSON came back and entered the theatre from the front.  People were freaking out and unfortunately I didn't get a view of them that time.

Finally, it was close to 5:00 pm and they opened the doors to the theatre.  Tara and I went straight to the T-shirt vendor and each bought the green t-shirt and the HANSON calendar. Our seats were in the balcony and I was a bit upset. However, we could see right down on them.

Before they came on stage, some man came out to tell the audience that we had to follow certain rules.  The next thing you know HANSON ran out on stage, all three of them showered the audience with silly string, then Tay said "this is a HANSON concert and there are no rules except for one - you have to have fun and you can't stand still!".  The crowd went ballistic!  They performed these songs: Thinking of you, Where's the love, Madeline, A Minute Without you, Man from Milwaukee, and then MMMBop.  It was simply awesome.  On Man from Milwaukee, before they got to the part that says "they run around in underwear", Tay said "you guys know this part" and held the mic out to
the audience.  He was so nice during the concert. They all were. Zac was a total
animal. Tay even asked the audience to excuse Zac because he hadn't taken his medication that day (jokingly, of course).

After the "concert", Mercury Records Executives came out and announced that Middle of Nowhere had gone double platinum and presented HANSON with their plaques.   That was a proud moment for the band and for the fans who got to be there to see it being presented.

Well, lucky for us, HANSON said that they were filming their home video and would repeat the "concert" for us again - two concerts in one day - Oh my God, I couldn't believe my luck!  Tay announced that the directors needed the bottom of the theatre to be completely filled and asked folks to come off the balcony.  No need to ask again! We flew down those stairs and made our way to the front row. We were just to the left of Tays conga drums! My mom freaked because she couldn't find us and almost had us paged. I wish she would have **grin**!

After one of the songs, Tay asked the crowd if they were having fun yet. Zac responded by saying in one of his crazy voices, "well if you're not, then go home".
He was s-o-o-o-o-o-o funny! Then Tay said that he didn't see enough hands in the air. He told everyone to follow what he was doing. He said "put your hands in the air" and everyone did, then it was "now put them down" and we did, then he goes "back up, down, up, down, now do the Hokey Pokey".  Ike said that we, the audience, were incredible.  Tay said that we were crazy and called us geniuses. They were so great with everyone.

After the 2nd "concert", they took a break and went to get ready for the filming of the "I Will Come to You" video.  When they came back out they all looked so fine. Tay had on a black shirt and red pants. He told us that when videos are shot that band lip sync and don't actually play their instruments, so they turned of the mics to everything.  They did "I Will Come to You" 4 different times.  They had to stop once because Zac left from behind the drums and started swaying back and forth and singing in a weird voice.
Then he came to the front and sprayed everyone w/ silly string again.  Tay high-fived him.Finally, when all was said and done, it was time to go, but before they left the stage they acted like they were gonna take off and jump into the crowd, but they didn't. Then Zac grabbed one of the roving cameras and started swinging from it.

That was definitely the greatest experience of my life and if the opportunity ever arises, I'll do it again in a New York second!  Speaking of New York, I'd like to say "thank you" to all the nice people that we met while standing in line for 10 hours.  You guys treated us "Out of Towners" with lots of kindness and we also made some new friends that day.  Hope you enjoyed my true life adventure!

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