AUDIENCE is the world's leading monthly magazine for the international contemporary live music industry, providing news, features and information to professionals in more than 80 countries worldwide. Circulation includes thousands of promoters, festival organisers, venue operators and key people in dozens of related sectors.
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LIVE UK, a sister publication to AUDIENCE, is the only publication dedicated to the country's contemporary live music business, providing news, features, tour plans and information to the people that drive the industry – promoters, festival organisers, venue operators, artiste managers, booking agents, ticketing companies, media and key professionals in dozens of related sectors.
View digital magazine here.

festival is an annual planning-season supplement of LIVE UK, published in December, February, March and April – when the bulk of festival production deals are concluded – providing news, features, information and events data for the business people behind festivals. From April to October, it becomes a two-page section within LIVE UK.

Issue 208, May 2017

We couldn’t cope, admit Fyre Festival organisers

BAHAMAS    The organisers behind the Fyre Festival fiasco, which left hundreds of VIP guests stranded, have refused to rule out staging the event in 2018, despite admitting they were out of their depth this year.

The so-called luxury music festival on the island of Grand Exuma promised lavish accommodation and first class catering for the inaugural event.

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Paradigm takes 50 per cent stake in X-ray 

UNITED STATES   Paradigm Talent Agency has acquired a 50 per cent stake in UK booking agency X-ray Touring.

The deal will provide X-ray, which has a roster of over 400 acts including Coldplay, Robbie Williams, Eminem and Green Day, with opportunities across branding, endorsements and digital content development, according to the company.

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Live Nation reports revenue record and a fall in losses 

UNITED STATES   Live Nation Entertainment (LNE) has reported first quarter (Q1) revenues up 19 per cent to a record $1.4 billion, from $1.2bn in the same period last year.

The Q1 operating loss was $21m, an improvement of 36 per cent from the same period in 2016 when it lost $33m.

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Neuland goes it alone

GERMANY   Neuland Concerts has gone fully independent following a management buy-out of the business from Warner Music Germany.

The Hamburg-based promoter has been a division of Warner since it was launched in 2008, but has been operating as a stand-alone division for two years. Since being established Neuland has promoted more than 5,000 events.

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Consumer groups in resale complaints survey 

WORLD   A global campaign has been launched to gather information from fans who have suffered at the hands of the secondary ticketing sector, in a bid to prevent more people falling victim in future.

Led by Australian consumer group Choice, Consumer NZ in New Zealand and UK consumer champion Which?, the Ticked-Off Campaign seeks the experiences of consumers across the world as part of an online survey.

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Promoter found guilty of fraud

SWITZERLAND    Veteran promoter Harry Sprenger has been ordered to pay performance collection society Suisa 500,000 francs ($504,000), after being found guilty of fraud and financial mismanagement.

Sprenger was given a 20-month suspended sentence by a Zurich court for the offences, which took place while he was running his Free & Virgin Group and promoting the touring festival Sonisphere (cap. 30,000) through his Outfield Productions company.

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TicketOne to appeal against $1 million fine

ITALY    The country’s largest primary ticket agency TicketOne is to appeal a €1million ($1.092m) fine for failing to enforce measures to stop ticket touting.

The company, a subsidiary of pan-European giant CTS Eventim, drew the biggest fine as part of an investigation by the Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato (Italian Competition Authority).

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Monaco makes LiveStyle move

UNITED STATES    The new incarnation of global electronic music promoter SFX Entertainment, LiveStyle, has appointed industry veteran Chris Monaco as chief revenue officer for brand partnerships and sponsorships.

Monaco joins LiveStyle, rebranded from SFX late last year after it emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection (see Audience issue 203), having previously worked as senior vice-president of strategic marketing and brand development at Universal Music Group.

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DEAG back in the black

GERMANY   Promoter, venue operator and record label Deutsche Entertainment AG (DEAG) reports a return to profit in 2016, after making a loss of €26.2 million ($28.6m) the previous year.

The company says it was helped by a strong fourth quarter (Q4) which brought in revenue of €86.8m ($94.9m), a rise from the €53.9m ($58.9m) in 2015, which contributed to a €500,000 ($547,255) profit. 

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Zepp expands venue network

ASIA    Zepp Hall Network, a subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment Japan, has announced plans for two further venues outside Japan.

Having revealed its intention to open Zepp Kuala Lumpar (cap. 2,500) earlier this year (see Audience issue 207), the multi-venue operator is opening Zepp@BIGBOX (2,333) as part of a shopping complex in Jurong East, Singapore and Zepp New Taipai (2,200) in Hsinchuang District, Taiwan, in 2020.

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Ticket resellers ’not the bad guys’: Rapino

CANADA    The president and CEO of global giant Live Nation Entertainment (LNE), Michael Rapino, told delegates gathered for Canadian Music Week (CMW) that secondary ticket sellers “are not the bad guys” and are simply taking advantage of market conditions.

The Canadian-born boss of LNE, which owns Ticketmaster and, in turn, several resale platforms, said the live industry was the only one in the world were its product had a higher resale value the moment it was sold, during a keynote interview with journalist George Stroumboulopoulos.

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StubHub partners Rock in Rio

BRAZIL   Resale website StubHub has been appointed the international ticketing partner for the 85,000-capacity Rock in Rio festival.

The eBay-owned platform, which predominately operates in the secondary ticketing market, will enable customers outside of Brazil to buy tickets in their own language and currency. 

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Schwartz explains $7m spiral of theft from clients

UNITED STATES    Alanis Morissette's former business manager Jonathan Todd Schwartz, who pled guilty in Los Angeles federal court to two charges of embezzling more than $7 million from the singer and other entertainment and sports figures, has penned an open letter of apology in The Hollywood Reporter to his victims. 

Morissette responded, "I would be apprehensive to believe any words that come out of Jonathan Schwartz's mouth."

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Schulenberg sells $260m CTS stake 

GERMANY   The majority shareholder in pan-Europe ticketing giant CTS Eventim, CEO Klaus-Peter Schulenberg’s KPS Stiftung, is to reduce its stake by seven per cent.

CTS founder Schulenberg and KPS is selling part of its 50.2 per cent shareholding to raise funds for future investments, says the company.

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Rock Fest to fill the void

FINLAND     A new event kicks off this summer’s open-air season when Rock Fest debuts on 9-10 June, with Rammstein headlining the Friday and Evanescence on Saturday. 

It is to be held at new 25,000-capacity, greenfield site Vehkala in Vantaa, a dormitory city north of Helsinki.

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Managers celebrated

UNITED STATES   Artiste managers Brian Avnet, the late Sid Bernstein, Eric Gardner, Elliott Roberts, David Sonenberg and the late Jerry Weintraub were among those inducted into the Personal Managers Hall of Fame on 18 May, at a ceremony held in Las Vegas.

Avnet's artistes include David Foster, Josh Groban, Frankie Valli and Manhattan Transfer; Bernstein is best known for bringing the Beatles to the US and managing The Rascals and Laura Nyro. He was also a record producer and promoter. 

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IFF keeps it intimate

UNITED KINGDOM     Organisers of the International Festival Forum (IFF) insist the conference and showcase event will remain intimate despite the number of delegates increasing.

Co-founded by the team behind the International Live Music Conference (ILMC) and Netherlands-based Ruud Berends of Networking Music, the event is expecting 600 delegates for its third edition, a rise of 20 per cent from last year’s 500.

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Lollapalooza capacity hits 100,000 

ARGENTINA    The decision by promoter DF Entertainment to increase the size of the site for the local edition of festival brand Lollapalooza by 25 per cent paid dividends, taking its capacity to 100,000 for the first time.

Held at San Isidro Hipodromo in Buenos Aires for the fourth consecutive year, the event sold-out on both days. Capacity had been previously capped at 80,000.


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Live Nation fined over AC/DC refund debacle

SPAIN    Live Nation Entertainment (LNE) has been fined €15,000 ($16,396) for failing to give customers enough time to apply for refunds in relation to an AC/DC show.

Concert-goers were given the option of a refund for a gig at Estadio Olímpico de Sevilla (cap. 60,000) on 10 May last year, after singer Brian Johnson was forced to pull out mid-way through the band’s 2016 tour. He was replaced by Axl Rose, who had to perform in a chair having injured his foot.

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Collection society investigated

GREECE    Performance rights society AEPI (Hellenic Society for Protection of Intellectual Property in English) is being investigated, following allegations of financial mismanagement.

A recent government audit of the organisation, which represents more than 14,000 song-writer and music publisher members, found it owed €42 million ($45.6m) in unpaid royalties, and illegal loans were being made to board members.

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The Worlds Best Stadiums for Live Music is published annually in March and is free to Audience subscribers worldwide. This 44-page review of the worldwide stadium network for music shows covers topics such as ticketing and the use of social media marketing.
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The World's Best Arenas For Live Music
is published annually and is free to Audience subscribers worldwide, including the operators of more than 165 leading venues in the sector. It is a must for anyone working internationally in the arena sector, whether venue operators, promoters or service providers.
View digital magazine here.