Inside Prince's Party

31 May 2012 | 3:05 pm | Bryget Chrisfield

Prince was at his afterparty last night. But he didn't play a note. Read how it all went down.

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Many Melbourne Prince fans are feeling a little hard done by today as the afterparty for the final show on his Welcome 2 Australia tour, held last night at Melbourne's The Hi-Fi, didn't actually feature the artist himself playing a single note.

Inpress Assistant Editor Bryget Chrisfield was at the show and gave a thorough timeline of events that transpired as she attempted to see the iconic master of pop one last time before he left the country.

9.47pm Receive text message: “Hi-Fi $25!!!!! Good luck.”
9.49pm Call cab.
10.05pm Rush into Swanston Street convenience store to get cash out/purchase Red Bull.
10.07pm Join queue, approximately 300 people ahead of me.
10.17pm A neighbour in the queue checks with Hi-Fi doorstaff and is told doors will open at midnight.  
(Many new arrivals find their friends in the queue, which expands from being about four people in width to at least ten.)
12.45am Doors open. Queue surges forward.  
1.30am Someone walks down the queue and calls out, "We're nearly at capacity!" Unsure whether the voice came from venue staff or a random passerby.
1.45am Queue stops moving completely.
(Police appear on the street in front of the venue. Many from the queue move out to inspect the curbside action and other new arrivals hover around the entrance and then push in.)  
2.45am Screams go up, mobile phones are held high in the air directed toward the street. Passengers get out of a vehicle, a couple of matching red umbrellas are opened to partly conceal our view, the driver-side back door opens, Prince gets out! Crowd goes wild. Prince skips (ever-so-stylishly) and then hurries inside the venue.    
2.47am Those bordering the street barge sideways into the queue as early arrivals protest.
2.50am Security guard attempting to control the situation makes a decision to cut off the outside half of the queue and everyone pushes in toward the wall, hoping not to get cut.
3.10am A dude bribes his way into the front of the queue by paying the guy in front of me $20.
3.39am Finally get in, buy a beer and secure a position with great view of the stage, which is set up with band equipment.
3.55am “We. Want. Prince!” chant goes up.
(The Purple One is allegedly upstairs in 'VIP'.)
4.22am People start leaving in droves, including a lady who wanders past guiding a child who looks around eight years old.
4.31am A hip hop-style dance circle forms in the pit in an attempt to maintain excitement.
4.35am Musical equipment starts getting dismantled onstage. People are baffled and approach venue staff/ roadies for clarification since there's been no announcement .
4.55am Stage is almost bare.
4.57am As the last hopeful stragglers hover or wander slowly up the venue stairs, a security guard teases, "Where are you going? He's coming back!" He laughs. It's not funny.
5.00am On way out, the front desk chick confirms Prince has left the building. Turns out he went out through the back door.
5.01am Eavesdropped conversation on a Swanston Street: four glamorously dressed ladies weigh up whether or not to leave, because they've heard Prince sometimes does a solo keyboard thing.
5.03am Hail cab.
5.16am Lie in bed trying to convince myself that clapping eyes on His Purple Majesty's showbiz entrance was worth a five-and-a-half-hour wait in a queue. At least I can say, "I was there when..."?
5.27am Remember a guy I met in queue tonight who had also rocked up to the Crown Casino for Prince's supposed aftershow jam at Club 23 following his first Melbourne gig on Monday 14 May. That was cancelled at the last minute.
5.28am Feel better. Zzzzzz.
8.00am Beep! BEEP! BEEP! Time to get ready for work.