Take That Eurovison

Take That1

Louis Petrin writes from Australia:

All the talk is about Sweden’s Måns Zelmerlöw winning the Eurovison Song Contest with his song Heroes, even here in Australia.

What has this to do with rowing? Well, like many strange things in life, Måns was born in Lund, where HTBS founder Göran studied at the university, and Måns now lives in Malmö, which is the birthplace of Göran.

A great segue to talk about pop stars and rowing….. Robbie Williams and his band-mates from Take That had spent four days shooting a promo on a lake, dressed as olden-day oarsmen for their song, The Flood.

The video features the five members of the band racing against another crew in five-seater (a very rare quintuple) sculling boats custom-made by Carl Douglas Racing Shells, later auctioned on eBay for £3,800 ($5,900).

Watch Take That’s The Flood here.

The band’s boat is named Progress, after the record breaking number one album, whilst all the rowers wear old-fashioned white rowing kit including long socks.

I can just see the coach calling out, ‘Robbie…. Thumbs on the button!’ ‘Bow and Two, head in the boat!’ ‘Robbie, knees together!’ ‘I am off to the pub!’

The band members are shown racing against a younger crew and although losing the competition, the group continue going past the finish line and rowing down the River Thames past famous London landmarks before fading away into a stormy sea.

Take That2

In fact, much of the long shots of rowing used body doubles. Leander Club was asked to provide ten rowers for filming.

For the close-ups of the band rowing, the boat was attached to a barge which kept it stable and pushed them so all they had to do was the actions.

The video for the single was filmed on Dorney Lake, near Windsor and on the Thames in Runnymede, Surrey and London in July of 2010.

The song peaked at number five in the Swedish pop charts.

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