LONDON (CelebrityAccess) — ILMC 35 kicked off in London on Tuesday with some of the leading figures in the live entertainment industry addressing some of the live sectors most pressing issues.
According to IQ Magazine, the conference opened with the annual Open Forum Session, which was hosted this year by CAA’s Maria May.
Topics on tap during the session, included ticket prices, with many of the panelists noting that tickets for the top tours had gone up by more than 10% across the board in the last year with Herman Schueremans of Live Nation Belgium conceding that many in the industry had not expected such sharp price increases.
“You cannot avoid rising costs – you have to live with it and deal with it. It might mean we have to work harder but earn less. Making a profit is important, but it’s not the most important,” he said.
Panelists also addressed the controversial subject of dynamic pricing, with Concerts West John Meglen noting that “Most shows do not sell out, but at the very high end it’s a very simple supply and demand issue [and] dynamic pricing is a business decision. If you sell a ticket for $100 but then watch it be resold for $500, the artist should be receiving that money, not the tout.”
Meglen went on to note that in his view, blaming the ticket system for any issues was just shifting responsibility.
It’s up to us to set those business rules – we cannot be blaming the ticketing systems, he said. “We have an issue of pricing, and we have a resale issue. We need to make sure that the money [remains] in our business. If we’re getting market value for our tickets, the artists are going to earn more and it’s not someone outside business making the money.”
Other panelists in the open section touched on the challenges faced by the next generation of artists and ensuring the health of the grassroots end of the live industry amid the era of large stadium shows.
UTA’s Obi Asika downplayed the impact of stadiums and expressed concern for their impact on festivals. “I’m more worried about the stadium effect on festivals. But I don’t see it as an issue; it’s just different,” he said.
Q Prime Management’s Tara Richardson added that she doesn’t care for stadium shows but noted their importance in the post pandemic world.
“I hate stadium shows: there’s no atmosphere until after the sun goes down.” she said before adding, “There’s a whole generation of ticket buyers who have skipped sweaty clubs because they have been stuck indoors during the pandemic.”