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Andy Copping would allow AC/DC to bring their own stage to the Download Festival again

If the band would hypothetically agree to play

AC/DC at the Download Festival 2010

Author: Scott ColothanPublished 51 minutes ago
Last updated 13 minutes ago

Download Festival booker Andy Copping says he would agree to have two main stages at the festival again if AC/DC were to headline again.

AC/DC famously brought their own stage to the Download Festival for their legendary Friday night headliner slot in 2010, while all other acts played on the adjacent main stage.

Speaking during his one-off Planet Rock show, Andy Copping's Secrets of Download, Copping said AC/DC's headlining performance was still one of the most talked about moments in Download Festival's 21-year history.

“A lot of people still talk about AC/DC's insistence on bringing their own stage in 2010,” said Copping. “When I booked AC/DC, which was a huge deal at the time, AC/DC didn't do festivals. They just did their own shows.”

“I talked them into playing at Download and their production manager came over and we went over everything in great detail. We had told them we would completely recreate AC/DC's stage and production as long as we could keep it for the rest of the festival because they were playing on Friday night and Download is obviously on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. And that was all agreed.”

AC/DC at the Download Festival 2010

He continued: “Literally three weeks before the festival, the production manager called and said, 'I know you said you were going to recreate it, but the band is insisting on bringing their own stage. Can you accommodate that?' I then said, 'Well, I guess so, but can other bands play on it?' And he said, 'No, because we want to take the stage away and use it for the rest of the tour.'

“That meant we had to come up with a new plan that meant we would have two main stages at Download in 2010. I just remember when people got there – because we hadn't informed anyone – they just saw these two huge stages in the main arena.

“On Friday, of course, AC/DC came and played on that stage. All the other bands that played on the main stage on Friday played on our other stage. It was quite a logistical nightmare, but I don't think it affected the overall feel of the festival. And now we have a story that we'll talk about forever – AC/DC bringing their own stage.”

Copping confirmed he would do it again, continuing: “People have actually asked me, 'Would you do it again?' And I said, 'Yeah, I would! If it's AC/DC, why wouldn't you do it?! You want to accommodate them.' So it was one of those things, it was a one-off thing – AC/DC didn't come back and certainly didn't ask for their own stage. But yeah, I would definitely do it again and that was a big, big moment.”

Andy Copping on Planet Rock

AC/DC will play two huge shows at London's Wembley Stadium in early July as part of their Power Up World Tour.

With Queens of the Stone Age, Fall Out Boy and Avenged Sevenfold as headliners, the Download Festival will take place from Friday 14 to Sunday 16 June 2024 at Donington Park.

Elsewhere on his Secrets of Download show, Andy Copping revealed that a “big band” will play a “very special” secret set at this year’s event.

Listen to Andy Copping's download secrets:

The very first Download Festival in pictures:

The main stage at the Download Festival 2003

The very first Download Festival took place from Saturday 31 May to Sunday 1 June 2003 on the hallowed turf of Donington Park – home of the legendary Monsters of Rock.

Iron Maiden headlines Download Festival 2003

Two-time Monsters of Rock headliners Iron Maiden were the headline acts on the opening night of Download 2003.

Iron Maiden headlines Download Festival 2003

Iron Maiden's performance at the first Download Festival was part of their “Give Me Ed… 'til I'm Dead” tour.

Deftones at the Download Festival 2003

Other main stage performers on Saturday included Marilyn Manson, Deftones (pictured), Ministry, InMe, Murderdolls, Amen, Funeral for a Friend, Stampin' Ground, Shadows Fall and Murder One.

Audience at the Download Festival 2003

Years before the introduction of smartphones, loyal followers of the 2003 Download Festival attended the event armed with disposable cameras.

Ministry at Download Festival 2003

All Jourgenson of Ministry sings into his inconspicuous microphone stand at the Download Festival 2003 on Saturday.

HIM at the Download Festival 2003

Ville Valo of Finnish gothic rockers HIM during the band's Saturday performance on the Scuzz Stage. Also performing on the second stage were A, Reel Big Fish, Taproot, Sepultura, Reef, SOiL, The Hellacopters, SikTh, 3 Colours Red, From Autumn To Ashes, Queen Adreena, Violent Delight, Arch Enemy and Chimaria.

Audience at the Download Festival 2003

The name of the Download Festival has two meanings. The word “Download” was a vague word at the time because of Napster and illegal downloading. Download was also seen as the Monster of Rock for the 21st century and the internet would connect with the audience. There was a download code on the tickets so fans could download tracks from some of the bands performing.

Audioslave as headliner at the Download Festival 2003

The late rock legend Chris Cornell onstage with Audioslave during the band's headlining performance on the main stage on Sunday night at the 2003 Download Festival. It was Audioslave's only appearance at Download, however Chris Cornell returned with Soundgarden and as a solo artist.

Audioslave as headliner at the Download Festival 2003

Audioslave replaced the original headliners Limp Bizkit in the line-up after Fred Durst and Co. canceled.

Keith Flint at the Download Festival 2003

The late Keith Flint on stage with his ephemeral solo band Flint on Sunday at Download Festival 2003. The Prodigy headlined the second stage at Download Festival in 2006 and 2009 before headlining the main stage in 2012.

Corey Taylor of Stone Sour at the Download Festival 2003

Wearing a Union Jacket with the words “Donington” written on it in felt tip pen, Corey Taylor played with Stone Sour at the first ever Download Festival. Slipknot have headlined Download five times since the festival's inception and Corey has also performed as a solo artist for the past 21 years.

Metallica play secret set at Download Festival 2003

A truly groundbreaking moment at Download Festival: Metallica played a secret set on the Scuzz Stage on Sunday afternoon.

Metallica play secret set at Download Festival 2003

Metallica played a 10-song set on a packed stage, including a number of tracks from their upcoming album “St Anger.”

Metallica play secret set at Download Festival 2003

Also on the Scuzz Stage program on Sunday, alongside Metallica, were NOFX, Boysetsfire, The Bouncing Souls, Strung Out, Thrice, Spunge, TSOL, The Real McKenzies, The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster, Brand New, Instruction, Beatsteaks, Randy and Fabulous Disaster.

Justin Hawkins of The Darkness at the Download Festival 2003

Justin Hawkins backstage before The Darkness' performance on the main stage. Audioslave, Zwan, Flint, Apocalyptica, Less Than Jake, Disturbed, Stone Sour, Evanescence, Mudvayne, Spineshank, One Minute Silence, Raging Speedhorn and Instruction also played on the second day.

Billy Corgan at the Download Festival 2003

Billy Corgan on stage with Zwan on Sunday at the Download Festival 2003

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