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Arena Market: Venezuela

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Venezuela has been out of the loop for a decade as it has wrestled with a political, economic, and social crisis, deepened by a US oil embargo.

The country is still riven by poverty, but the government’s decision to relax restrictions on US currency means the gears of private sector industry are engaging again, even if public-sector workers, paid in the local bolivar, still struggle to make ends meet.

The upshot of an influx of dollars has been the return to Caracas of live music, with shows by Mexican star Alejandro Fernández, Puerto Rican hip-hop artist Myke Towers, and Il Divo having taken place already this year, and Puerto Rico’s Kany García coming in September, Fito Páez in October, and Eros Ramazzotti in December.

The upshot of an influx of dollars has been the return to Caracas of live music.

Needless to say, there are no shiny new venues waiting for them, but there are some serviceable arenas. Terraza del C.C.C.T. – the Centro Ciudad Comercial Tamanaco – is a 5,000-seat outdoor event centre in a shopping mall in Caracas that has been in use since at least the early 2000s, and it is bearing the weight of much of the sudden influx of shows.

The 20,000-cap Poliedro de Caracas indoor arena, which once hosted the cream of 80s and 90s stars, from Queen to Guns N’ Roses, is also back in action, with Ramazzotti, Páez and Puerto Rican merengue star Olga Tañón booked in.

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