BRUCE DICKINSON: 'Everything You Need To Know About IRON MAIDEN Is Onstage'

Paul Sexton of Reuters recently conducted an interview with IRON MAIDEN frontman Bruce Dickinson. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow.

Q: It seems as though MAIDEN developed a common cause because the band members were, and still are, outsiders.

Dickinson: We are still outsiders. We always will be, because that's our essential nature. I can't imagine what it would be like to go to vacuous showbiz parties. It'd be a nightmare. It's just not what we're about. The show's the thing. Everything you need to know about IRON MAIDEN is onstage.

Q: How did you develop your personal stagecraft?

Dickinson: It's one thing to project a confident air to the back of a club. It's another to do the same thing in a theatre, then an arena, and it's quite another thing to do it in a festival. Before the days of camera and side screens, you were just a little speck. It was a rapid learning curve.

My aim as a frontman is always to try and shrink the venue, if you can, to turn that football stadium into the world's smallest club. At least you have to try. The essence of the MAIDEN experience is that we want to include everybody in it.

Q: You personally have always taken on challenges, whether it's fencing, broadcasting, being an author or being a pilot.

Dickinson: That's because I just have an insatiable curiosity about the nature of things, and I think the best way to find out about something is to try and do it. Flying wasn't on a list. It would be awfully good from the point of view of people writing about us if there was a plan, but there isn't.

The movie we're just doing ("Chemical Wedding") stems from conversations in the pub with Julian Doyle (Dickinson's co-writer on the film and its director) 15 years ago. As it happens, we're now having the most successful tour in the band's history, the band is a global phenomenon, and in the same year, we get to release a feature film, followed shortly afterwards by another feature film with a documentary, DVD, all the rest of it. ... It looks like a plan. It's not. It's totally random.

Q: So how would you compare MAIDEN now with the group of, say, 25 years ago?

Dickinson: The way we play the songs now is in many ways more powerful, it's more under control. It's not like somebody running so fast that their legs are running away underneath them, which is kind of what it was like in the '80s. This is a mature runner now who knows the pace and has always got something in the tank for the sprint when it's appropriate. We've reached that sweet spot.

Read the entire interview at www.reuters.com.

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