Sunday, December 16, 2001

Janet Jackson fans Siliva Lealao, Henryetta Q.B. Sosene, Sam Su, Cherie Lee and Trisha Yasuda, from left, had been outside Aloha Stadium since early Thursday morning for tickets.

Janet Jackson show
brings out the
isles’ die-hard fans

A group of friends brave torrential
rains to be first in line
to get tickets to her show

By Rod Antone

Sam Su Jr. wanted to make sure he and his friends were the first in line to buy Janet Jackson tickets. So despite the heavy rain and wind, they camped along Salt Lake Boulevard starting at about 7:30 a.m. Thursday.

Being in line two days before the box office opened yesterday "was really worth it," said Su, who described sitting under an umbrella during pouring rain only as a "distraction."

"We got tenth row seats though we wanted the front row."

"We were afraid all the good seats were going to be gone already," said Su's friend Siliva Lealao. "We just survived ... It rained a lot."

Stadium security estimate that about 500 people were in line when tickets went on sale at 9 a.m. yesterday. Siliva, Su and Henryetta Q.B. Sosene, who describes herself as "not even a Janet Jackson fan" were among ten people who were waiting since Thursday.

"We were the only people there since the morning," said Sosene. "The others came Thursday afternoon."

The trio said they survived by telling jokes, running across the street to McDonalds for food and squishing into a mini pup tent when the weather got bad.

"I was sleeping near the entrance so I was soaked in the morning," said Su. "But it was exciting ... we were itching for the gates to open."

Of course, not everyone opted to wait 72 hours in line for tickets.

"No, that's crazy, they should find friends who work in the ticketing booth," said James Fuentes, who has friends who got 28 tickets for himself and his co-workers at Rendezvous Tours.

"If I were Janet I'd be very touched."

Touching Janet might have been the plan for Su and his friends but he said that the first nine rows were reserved by HBO, which will air the concert live. Jackson's last concert in Hawaii, "Janet: The Velvet Rope" was also carried live by HBO in 1998.

The singer recently canceled a fall European tour because of safety concerns in the wake of Sept. 11, but the Feb. 17 "All for You: Live in Concert From Hawaii" show is still on. Aloha Stadium box office officials said they sold roughly 11,000 tickets yesterday, their first day of sales.

Stadium capacity for the Jackson concert is expected to be about 30,000. Tickets range from $45 to $65.

"Technically the tenth row is the front row since you can't get seats any closer," Su said. "I've got no complaints. It's all for Janet."

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