IRON MAIDEN tonight pulled off a stunning victory by a reported landslide at the U.K.'s prestigious Brit Awards when they were voted best "Best British Live Act" by the public and their fans ahead of COLDPLAY, ELBOW, THE VERVE and SCOUTING FOR GIRLS. The awards ceremony was held at Earls Court Arena, in West London. The show was hosted by Kylie Minogue and James Corden and Mathew Horne, the stars of the BBC comedy "Gavin & Stacey", and was televised live on ITV1.
The winners of the majority of the categories were chosen by the Brits voting academy, which is made up of 1,000 specially invited judges including music critics, journalists, and radio presenters. Less than a quarter of the judges are drawn from the record industry itself and 12 per cent are employees of the major record companies.
MAIDEN are one of Britain's biggest international acts ever, selling over 70 million albums and breaking ticket records around the globe with their enormous live following. Last summer, they staged a spectacular British show at Twickenham Stadium, one of 90 shows in 38 countries on the current "Somewhere Back in Time" tour, playing to almost two million fans.
Watch IRON MAIDEN's acceptance video below.
Singer Bruce Dickinson says, "We are delighted to receive the Brit Award for 'Best British Live Act', especially as this is a testament to our fans. I've often said IRON MAIDEN's secret weapon is our fans and they've proved us right all along. Anyone who's been to one of our shows knows that they're the most passionate and devoted fans on the planet, making the atmosphere at our shows incredible. So this award is for them as much as it is for us. It is they who voted in huge numbers. It's a shame they can't all get a Brit statue!"
Manager Rod Smallwood adds, "This has to be good for metal, I don't think many Brit Awards have been given to metal so it's about time it was recognised for the creative force it is. Metal and MAIDEN have long thrived outside the mainstream media and radio so l am sure our fans will be very pleased about this and, let's face it, they are the ones who voted in droves and the ones we have to thank. The black sheep finally invades your lounge!!"
IRON MAIDEN has confirmed that the final show ever of the Somewhere Back in Time World Tour 2008 - 2009 will be in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on April 2 at the BankAtlantic Center. This, the band's first concert in Florida in 13 years, will definitely be the last gig of one of the most ambitious rock tours ever undertaken, and promises to be a big party night for both the band and audience.
Rammed with a full complement of band, crew and twelve tons of stage set and equipment, the band's customized Boeing 757, christened Ed Force One by the fans and flown again by Astraeus Airlines captain and MAIDEN vocalist Bruce Dickinson, will be once again circumnavigating close to 50,000 miles around the planet for concerts in 22 cities in 14 countries round the globe, making it a staggering 39 countries in total visited on this 2008-2009 tour, playing to almost two million fans.
The Somewhere Back in Time Tour revisits the band's history by focusing almost entirely on the '80s — in both choice of songs played, and the stage set, which is based around the legendary Egyptian Production of the 1984-85 Powerslave tour and featured on the recent DVD "Live after Death". This is arguably the most elaborate and spectacular show the band has ever presented, and will include some key elements of their Somewhere In Time tour of 1986-1987, such as the Cyborg Eddie character.
Fans around the world will be able to see what it was like flying on Ed Force One in the recently announced movie "Flight 666", which will play in selected cinemas around the world on Tuesday, April 21.