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The Greek market for international artists remains somewhat challenging.
“Pricing for raw materials, logistics, and equipment rentals has skyrocketed. Venue rental pricing has also increased due to increased operational costs, and concert staffing and experienced technicians are hard to find because a lot of experienced staff moved into other jobs,” says Nikos Loris, CEO of XLALALA Presents.
“Pricing for raw materials, logistics, and equipment rentals has skyrocketed.”
His company is one of the main promoters dealing with international artists and the only one to be running two festivals – Terra Vibe in Athens with a 45,000 cap, and Terra Republic/Long Beach in Northern Greece, with a 50,000 cap – and a venue (Piraeus Club Academy, an indoor club in central Athens). XLALALA Presents are also currently the only promoter with stadium shows announced for 2023 (Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli).
Other important promoters include High Priority Promotions, who brought Balthazar, Iron Maiden, and Jethro Tull to Greece in 2022; Half Note Productions; Fuzz Productions, who run Release Athens and the Greek edition of Europavox Festival, as well as two venues (Fuzz Club in Athens and Fix Factory of Sound in Thessaloniki); and GMI Live who run, among other shows, Sani Festival, which celebrated its 30th edition this year by welcoming Andrea Bocelli, Bob Geldof, and Chucho Valdés and Paquito D’Rivera.
“We bring many important names and prestigious artists to Greece,”
“We bring many important names and prestigious artists to Greece,” says Giannis Moustakas, GMI Live’s marketing director. He also notes that, typically, Greece will only see four or five A-list international stars a year, all centred around Athens.
“I would have to say that there is a deficit in venues of capacity from 10,000 to 20 or 30,000,” he says, “but the main problem from artists’ perspective is that to get to Athens by road it’s 500km down and then back up. That’s a problem for tour routing.”
“The market is challenging, with a lot of risks, both financially and with regards to attendance figures,”
“The market is challenging, with a lot of risks, both financially and with regards to attendance figures,” adds Loris. “The global financial problems, inflation, and the increased cost of living etc. have a chain effect on the consumer’s pocket. Fans don’t need to go to concerts, they must want to and have the financial means to do so. So naturally they’re becoming more selective about which shows they go to.”
But there are certainly reasons to be cheerful. “This year, everyone was just waiting [for Covid to be over], and so I believe next year will be even better than 2022, especially the summer – it will be explosive,” says Moustakas. “We will have growth, and all of us promoters will bring many artists to Greece.”