The Foo Fighters are an obvious draw for a rock station these days, but they proved too popular to be funny for MediaWorks station The Rock in Auckland, New Zealand.
The station pulled an April Fool's Day prank on listeners, leaking word of a special acoustic show at The Powerstation club a full month ahead of the band's scheduled two-show appearance at the Vector Arena in Auckland.
According to a report in Stuff.co.nz, at most 50 people were expected to fall for the stunt and the station would play a tape of the latest Foo Fighters' album from the club stage. Instead, the station got reports of people from across the country planning to fly or drive to Auckland for the event. Facing the possibility of more than 2,000 people showing up at The Powerstation, The Rock exposed the joke and began running on-air, online and on-site apologies.
The stunt was planned by the promotions staff while Program Director Brad King was on an out-of-the-country holiday. A statement from King on the station Web site reads:
I arrived back in the country after a week long holiday and heard of the announcement on The Rock that the Foo Fighters are playing in Auckland. This is an April Fools gag, dreamed up by our over enthusiastic promotions department and completely untrue.
On behalf of The Rock I sincerely apologise for this mis-information.
Contracts have been terminated, and heads have rolled. This is what happens when fools plan April Fools jokes.
We firmly stand beside our slogan, We do take music seriously.