By Monica Hesse
Thursday, June 3, 2010; C03
It is 5:30 a.m. It is Jonas time.
What happened was Shelley Hierstetter, 18, got the e-mail from the Jonas Brothers fan club, and she immediately called Alex, but Alex didn't answer the phone (she was at the pool), so she called Amanda and then Brooke O'Barr, who called Chelsea Graff, who put the executive plan into action, which was this:
They would all be first in line to see the Jonas Brothers' last-minute Warner Theatre concert Wednesday at 7 a.m.
"No, wait," Shelley amends her recollection. "Before I called anybody, I just screamed," and then her mom ran into her room, but all she could do was point at the computer screen and quiver.
Shelley and friends have been standing in the concert's entrance line for 26 hours. They sleep in shifts. Behind them are hundreds of additional giddy teens, and parents blearily swaying in the pre-dawn, pre-Jonas light. Periodically, someone squeals, as if releasing pressure from a boiling pot, and then the squeal catches on and everyone goes, "Eeeeeee!"
Couldn't the Jonas Brothers -- Kevin, Joe and Nick (everyone agrees Nick is the cute one) -- have performed at a saner hour? Couldn't the Jonas Brothers -- the holy trinity of Disney teen stardom -- have announced the concert earlier, giving everyone more time to plan? ("Our teacher thinks we're all at the doctor," one 15-year-old confides.)
They could not. The Jonas Brothers are in town primarily to fete Paul McCartney at the White House. This first-come, first-served free concert is a kickoff for "No Service Fee June" -- promoter Live Nation's attempt to boost ticket sales -- and the whole thing came together in a week. Tickets were distributed on Tuesday; a Live Nation official says about a thousand were given away.
"The JB's are the greatest partners we have," says Brad Wavra, a senior vice president with Live Nation. "I called up Papa Jonas," who manages things for his sons, and he said yes within a second.
Some have argued that the time of Jonas is fading. Some have argued that Justin Bieber, he of the swirly hair, is usurping the Jonas Brothers, they of the curly hair. Those people aren't here.
"Justin sings really great," tween Kaye Hyder tells her younger sister, Ally. "For a girl."
At 6:45-ish the doors open, and everyone stampedes in. Brooke reports that her friend lost a shoe in the madness, the way shoes are sometimes lost in tornadoes or other acts of God.
The Jonas Brothers, who are just as heartthrobby in person, perform five songs, including "Burnin' Up," which causes Sarah Harkins, 13, who has written "Jonas Brothers" on her face in black marker and who will most certainly not wash it off before school, to inform her friend Sophie Rizzo, 15, that the Jonas Brothers are, in fact, Right There. "They are right there!" she says. "There they are, rightthere!"
Sophie, who manages to stay calm despite this momentous news, can only grasp her friend's hands, look deeply into her eyes and whisper, "I know."
After the concert, everyone evaluates the experience.
"I got to touch Joe," Brooke reports. "Nick is my favorite, but he wasn't touching anybody, so I got to touch Joe."
"I touched Kevin," says Chelsea, "And I got his pick!" She holds aloft the beloved guitar pick, thrown into the crowd by the eldest Jonas, for inspection.
Then buoyed by Jonasness, they all float outside, where the sun has barely risen.