On July 1, 1984, Georgemania came to town and the excitement was enough to stop traffic. British pop group Culture Club, with their flamboyant lead singer Boy George, had arrived in Brisbane the previous day for two sold-out concerts at Festival Hall. Apart from these, a special publicity engagement awaited them as the band was given the honour of opening the new $ 2.5 million studios of Brisbane radio station, Radio 10.
In echoes of the Beatles’ fanfare 20 years earlier, eager fans began massing as early as 6am to secure the best vantage spots. Although a Sunday, Coronation Drive (between Sylvan and Park Rds in inner-west Toowong) was closed to traffic at 3pm as the crowd outside Radio 10 studios swelled to approximately 2000. Finally the band arrived and Boy George, somewhat embarrassed, cut the ribbon stretched across the doorway, as well as unveiling a plaque. During a subsequent interview at the station, the Boy christened George O’Dowd revealed he had visited the Gold Coast ( pictured ) and went into the surf fully clothed.
The band was more than an hour late for its first concert, but no-one seemed to mind. The Courier-Mail reported: “The 12-year-olds and the rest were all dressed up in black hats, braids, head scarves, patchwork jackets and eye-shades”. Although the fans screamed, one observer commented that this generation of Queensland teens were better behaved than their parents were at the same age. “It certainly wasn’t like the Beatles days,” commented Festival Hall proprietor John Wren. “The crowds were much wilder then, bashing down gates and things. These kids were really well-behaved.”