Aussie teens mob boyband One Direction

Agence France-Presse
The five-member outfit have drawn wild crowds since touching down in Sydney

BRITISH INVASION, 2012 EDITION. Members of the British boyband One Direction perform in Rockefeller Center, New York City, during a telecast of NBC's Today show March 12, 2012. Photo courtesy of the band's official website, OneDirectionMusic.com

SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) – Thousands of hysterical teenage girls mobbed a central Sydney television studio Wednesday, April 11, for a glimpse of British-Irish boy band One Direction, with some sleeping on the streets overnight to be first in.

The five-member outfit, whose talents were discovered on British television program “The X Factor”, have drawn wild crowds since touching down in Sydney for their first Australian tour.

Devoted fans have followed their every movement, tailing their black security vans across Sydney for press engagements in the hope of catching a glimpse of their idols, aged between 18 and 21.

Hundreds of fans braved an overnight cold snap to camp in the city’s central Martin Place plaza for front-row positions outside the windows of the Seven television network where the band was due to appear.

The crowd swelled to thousands through the morning, with girls sprinting from buses and train stations across town.

Security fences were erected to keep fans at a safe distance and a row of police officers stood with linked arms to hold the screaming mass at bay.

“I feel so sick, I was like a meter (yard) from them,” Felicity Powell, 16, told the Daily Telegraph.

Another fan was prepared to take a stun gun for her idols, declaring: “I’ll do anything to see them, I’d even get tasered for this. I don’t care, I just have to see them.”

Bemused office workers stopped to watch the colorful teenaged crowd, clad in a mix of pajamas and homemade fan T-shirts. Some waved signs proclaiming “Australia Loves 1D” and asking the band to marry them.

Several girls were so overcome with excitement when the group arrived on set that they fainted and needed to be lifted out of the crowd for first-aid treatment, according to media reports.

“This is mental, it’s absolutely incredible and we can’t believe it,” band member Liam Payne said of the crowds outside the studio.

One Direction comprise four young Britons and an Irishman. Their first album made its debut at number one on the US charts last month — a feat never before achieved by a British band. It had earlier charted at number two in Britain. – Agence France-Presse

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