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A high-school dropout who became a powerful rock-music promoter for U2 and the Rolling Stones, all but inventing the modern concert tour, Mr. Cohl is the potential savior of the $60 million show, which begins performances on Nov. 14. He was recruited a year ago by U2’s Bono and the Edge — the first-time theatrical composers for “Spider-Man” — to try to salvage the show from a premature death when money ran out.
Bono, replying to questions on Thursday by e-mail, said he first reached out to Mr. Cohl last August when Mr. Cohl was on vacation in Spain and pleaded with him to take over the show. “U2 were used to risking and sometimes losing our own money, trying to push the envelope on what was possible with our stage shows,” Bono wrote in the e-mail. Referring to Mr. Cohl, he added, “His experience with Pink Floyd and the Rolling Stones had confirmed his theory that the public understands production value and will reward risk-takers if the end result is superlative, not overindulgent.”