But when Despie arrived at the stadium with his stage a week before the event, he realized that it would block the view of hundreds of fans during the game. "We had to cut two feet off the stage so we could store it in the main tunnel," he said. "Then when halftime came, we ran out, unbolted the goal posts, lifted them out with a crane, and pushed the stage out on the field. Thank God the thing fit in the tunnel. I was a very nervous man."
Soon he'll be a nervous man again as he sits in the Atlanta stadium, waiting for another Super Bowl halftime to come to a close. Then he and the hundreds of employees and volunteers who made it happen will celebrate wildly.
"It's the biggest high in the world," Despie said, "when the show is over, everything went as planned, and you know you entertained millions of people."
Select Productions International at a Glance
* Founded: 1986 by Dennis Despie, former vice president of entertainment for Walt Disney Co.
* Headquarters: Tustin
* Employees: 4
* 1993 revenue: $4 million
* Upcoming productions: Super Bowl XXVIII halftime, Jan. 30; opening of 50-acre amusement park, Parque de Espana, in Ise Shima, Japan, April 22.
* Past productions: Halftimes for Super Bowls XI, XVIII, XXI and XXIV; President Ronald Reagan's inaugural parade, 1985; California Gov. George Deukmejian's inaugurations, 1983 and 1987
Source: Select Productions International; Researched by JANICE L. JONES / Los Angeles Times