Marilyn Manson Tour Kicks Off In America's Heartland

Shock-rocker's road trip opens Oct. 26 at same Memorial Hall in Kansas City, Kan., he played last go-around.

Despite his ghoulish appearance and penchant for defiling sacred objects -- from the

Holy Bible to Old Glory -- shock-rocker Marilyn Manson is still more than welcome to

bring his latest noise to America's traditionally conservative heartland.

At least, that's according to some venue operators in those parts.

Manson, who has reinvented himself as a latter-day glam-rocker, is launching his latest

tour with a show in the breadbasket of the U.S., Kansas City, Kan. When he arrives, he

will be met with open arms, according to the venue's management team.

"He played here last time and we explained to him what we needed him to do, and he

was absolutely delightful," said Brian Kincaid, who owns the management company that

runs the 3,200-capacity Memorial Hall in Kansas City, where Manson will kick off the tour

Oct. 26. Kincaid recalled telling Manson that, as long as there was no nudity onstage, he

could bring his outrageous show to Kansas City any time he wanted.

Manson (born Brian Warner) and his eponymous band will begin their upcoming 18-city

North American concert-tour in support of the group's new album, Mechanical

Animals, at the Memorial Hall, according to music-industry trade magazine

Pollstar. The industrial-rock band 12 Rounds has been announced as the

opening act on the first leg of U.S. tour dates, according to the official Manson website

(www.marilynmanson.net).

"If we thought there would be problems, we wouldn't have booked the date," Kincaid

said.

But Manson appears to be steering clear of Portland, Ore., Salt Lake City and the

Canadian cities of Calgary and Winnipeg, all locations where his show was either

banned or threatened with a ban during the controversial 1996-97 tour in support of his

breakthrough Antichrist Superstar album.

That tour, during which Manson staged mock Nazi-rallies, defaced Bibles and used the

American flag as toilet paper, also drew scores of protests from religious organizations.

Debbie Bensinger, a spokeswoman at Interscope Records, Manson's label, could not

confirm the upcoming tour-dates and added that the label has no word on venues or on

an opening act.

Mechanical Animals, which features the radio hit "The Dope Show" (RealAudio excerpt), debuted at #1

on the Billboard 200 albums chart two weeks ago, dropping to #5 this week. The

two-week sales total for the album is approximately 321,000 copies.

Industry experts expect Manson will likely do the same sort of steady, but not

overwhelming, concert business that he has done in the past. "Over the past couple of

years, they've done well, but not huge numbers," said Gary Bongiovanni, editor of

Pollstar.

With shows booked for 2,500-5,000-seat venues, Manson's band was wise to play some

rooms that are smaller than his audience warrants, in order to create a buzz about his

new, yet-to-be-revealed stageshow, Bongiovanni said. The ever-controversial Manson --

who will be performing with new guitarist John5 (born John Lowery), the replacement for

the departed Zim Zum -- has promised in interviews to continue the staged spectacle that

accompanied the Antichrist Superstar tour.

Based on the new album's promotional materials and a recent appearance at the MTV

Video Music Awards, it is obvious that Manson has changed his look, replacing his more

gothic togs with silver, sci-fi-influenced outfits. He has even worn prosthetic breasts,

suggesting an homage to '70s glam-pioneer David Bowie's androgynous, alien-like

Ziggy Stardust character.

Bongiovanni said it was too early to tell if Manson will inspire the same volatile reaction

that he did on his most recent go-round. "It depends if some religious leaders choose to

make him a target, or if Manson incites them somehow," Bongiovanni said.

With the tour scheduled to launch right in the heartland, and with such organizations as

conservative Christian-group the American Family Association promising to keep an eye

on the singer's antics, chances are good that Manson will continue to be the center of

controversy.

His tour continues from North America with a European leg that will take Manson on 16

dates from Barcelona, Spain, to Paris.



Marilyn Manson Tour Dates:

Oct. 26; Kansas City, Kan., Memorial Hall

Oct. 27; St. Louis, Mo., Fox Theater

Oct. 29; Milwaukee, Wis., Riverside Theatre

Oct. 30; Chicago, Ill., Aragon Ballroom

Oct. 31; St. Paul, Minn., Roy Wilkins Auditorium

Nov. 3; Tulsa, Okla., Brady Theatre

Nov. 4; Houston, Texas, Aerial Theatre

Nov. 5; Dallas, Texas, Bronco Bowl

Nov. 7; New Orleans, La., State Theatre

Nov. 9; Atlanta, Ga., Tabernacle

Nov. 10; Charlotte, N.C., Ovens Auditorium

Nov. 11; Richmond, Va., Landmark Theater

Nov. 14; Cleveland, Ohio, Cleveland Music Hall

Nov. 16; Detroit, Mich., State Theatre

Nov. 18; Toronto, Ont., Massey Hall

Nov. 19; Syracuse, N.Y., Landmark Theatre

Nov. 21; Boston, Mass., Orpheum Theatre

Nov. 23; New York, N.Y., Hammerstein Ballroom

Nov. 27; Barcelona, Spain, Pavello De La D'Hebron

Nov. 28; Bilbao, Spain, Pabellon De La Castilla

Nov. 30; Lisbon, Portugal, Pavilhao Multiusos

Dec. 1; Madrid, Spain, Palacio de la Commidad

Dec. 4; Milan, Italy, Palavobis

Dec. 5; Munich, Germany, Colosseum

Dec. 6; Vienna, Austria, Libro Music Hall

Dec. 9; Copenhagen, Denmark, KB Halle

Dec. 10; Oslo, Norway, Rockefeller Music Hall

Dec. 11; Stockholm, Sweden, Stockholm Arena

Dec. 13; Hamburg, Germany, Grosse Freiheit 36

Dec. 14; Tilburg, Netherlands, 013

Dec. 16; Cologne, Germany, E-Werk

Dec. 17; London, England, Brixton Academy

Dec. 18; Deinze, Belgium, Brielpoort

Dec. 19; Paris, France, Le Zenith