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All Points East partners with crypto platform Luno

On the heels of its link-up with London’s Koko venue, cryptocurrency exchange Luno has been announced as presenting partner of this year’s All Points East festival.

According to Luno, the partnership, which has been facilitated by AEG Global Partnerships, will enable it to “educate festival goers about safely harnessing the power and possibilities of cryptocurrency”.

Taking place in East London’s Victoria Park from 19-28 August, All Points East is expected to attract more than 350,000 festival goers over the course of the event. Headline acts will include Gorillaz, The Chemical Brothers, Kraftwerk, Tame Impala, The National, Disclosure and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.

“Every day, the relationship between crypto and music grows stronger”

“We’re delighted to be the presenting partner for All Points East this year,” says Sam Kopelman, Luno’s UK country manager. “You only have to look at the line up to see that it’s a festival with real cultural relevance that attracts a forward thinking crowd. As such, it’s the perfect partner for us to develop a long term relationship with music fans, artists and the broader industry. Every day, the relationship between crypto and music grows stronger, with blockchain innovations beginning to revolutionise the industry.”

The deal also includes the creation of the ‘Luno Lounge’ on the festival site, a space which will reflect the themes of both accessibility and opportunity. Luno customers will be offered exclusive access to promotions and competitions for festival tickets via social media, as well as fast track entry and other on-site benefits such as VIP upgrades.

Luno will also have a number of crypto themed environments on the festival site and will work with artists to create unique content about the opportunities of crypto.

“We’ll be working with Luno to add value to both fans and park users across the whole festival”

Luno is becoming increasingly active in the UK’s music and entertainment space as it aims to build on the growing interest in digital and blockchain technology amongst the cultural sector and creative industries.

“All Points East has grown from strength to strength over the last four years,” says Jim King, AEG’s CEO of European Festivals. “2022 arguably has the strongest line up to date and so it’s the perfect opportunity for us to welcome Luno as the presenting partner for the festival. We will be working with Luno to add value to both fans and park users across the whole festival, especially during our midweek ‘In the Neighbourhood’ programme.”


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BST Hyde Park agrees multi-year Vodafone deal

Telecoms giant Vodafone has been installed as the official connectivity partner of BST Hyde Park after sealing a multi-year partnership.

The deal, brokered by AEG Global Partnerships, will see Vodafone use its connectivity and technology capabilities to deliver AR experiences for music fans, while keeping festival-goers connected through the power of its 5G network and onsite activations. Vodafone will also offer customers the opportunity to win tickets to BST Hyde Park through its VeryMe Rewards programme.

Due to the pandemic, the AEG-promoted concert series is returning to London for the first time since 2019 with shows by Elton John (24 June), the Rolling Stones (25 June/3 July), Eagles (26 June), Adele (1-2 July), Pearl Jam (8-9 July) and Duran Duran (10 July).

“2022 will see us unveil a range of exciting partnerships and we are delighted to kick off our return to music as official connectivity partner of BST Hyde Park,” says Vodafone consumer director Max Taylor. “As well as using our connectivity to enhance the festival experience this summer, customers will be able to unlock access to some of the biggest events of the year through our VeryMe Rewards programme.”

“The line-up for this summer is so strong and we know that by partnering with Vodafone, we’ll be enhancing both the artist and fan experience”

Carla Morini, senior director, AEG Presents Global Partnerships, adds: “We’re incredibly excited to welcome Vodafone as an official partner of American Express presents BST Hyde Park. The line-up for this summer is so strong and we know that by partnering with Vodafone, we’ll be enhancing both the artist and fan experience. 2022 is certainly set to be a summer to remember.”

Speaking to IQ last year, King said AEG was excited to reveal a “new look” (and a new sponsor – American Express) for the eighth outing of the festival.

“We will finally have the chance to reveal the new creative presentation of the event with an updated Great Oak Stage and a new look and feel to the creative areas around the site,” he said.

The 65,000-cap festival launched in 2013 and, over the years, has seen performances from acts including the Rolling Stones, Taylor Swift, Bon Jovi, Celine Dion, Robbie Williams, Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie, the Cure, Black Sabbath, Tom Petty, Eric Clapton, The Killers, Carole King and Barbra Streisand.

 


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Tinder relaunches Festival Mode with top promoters

Dating app Tinder is partnering with Live Nation, AEG Presents and Superstruct to re-introduce its Festival Mode feature across 10 countries ahead of the first full summer season since 2019.

Designed to bridge the gap between online introductions and real life connections, Festival Mode allows Tinder members to select which events they plan to attend and match with fellow festival-goers up to a month before the show.

Festival Mode includes more than 20 of the world’s biggest festivals including The Governors Ball, Bonnaroo, Stagecoach and EDC Las Vegas in the US; All Points East and BST Hyde Park in the UK and Falls Festival, Festival X and Splendour in the Grass in Australia, as well as events such as Sónar in Spain, Sziget in Hungary and Lollapalooza in Paris, Berlin and Stockholm.

“Music is a universal language and the number-one interest among Tinder members worldwide. So many of our members are excited to jump back into in-person events. We wanted to build on that excitement and offer them a head start at meeting someone new ahead of one of the biggest festival seasons in years,” says Kyle Miller, VP of Product Innovation at Tinder. “Festival Mode gives you a chance to get yourself back out there, meet new people, and make friends before you hit the festival grounds. It’s a great, low-pressure way to make real world connections again.”

“People around the world are returning to festivals in record numbers and Tinder is helping those fans connect in a new way before the show”

The feature will also include a “Festival Goers” space, for users who don’t see their event listed or are simply just fans of festival culture to connect.

“People around the world are returning to festivals in record numbers and Tinder is helping those fans connect in a new way before the show,” adds Maureen Ford, Live Nation’s president of national and festival sales. “Live events create some of life’s most unforgettable moments largely thanks to the people we enjoy them with. By partnering with Live Nation’s festivals, Tinder is able to bring this new feature to millions of fans around the world.”

According to Tinder’s research, 64% of singles say they enjoy meeting new people while attending live music events, and over 3 in 5 (61%) say they’ve become friends, or more, with people they met at a music festival or concert.

 


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Messina Touring Group boosts Rachel Powers to VP

AEG Presents’ Messina Touring Group (MTG) has upped Rachel Powers to vice president from director of marketing.

An MTG veteran, Powers has worked at the Austin-based company for eight years.

According to MTG, she will take on added responsibility in her new role as she spearheads tour marketing and promotion for CMA Entertainer of the Year Eric Church and country superstar Blake Shelton.

“Her marketing expertise is key to the success of our tours”

“Rachel has been an incredible leader within our company and deserves this promotion,” says CEO Louis Messina. “Her marketing expertise is key to the success of our tours, and she adds immense value to both the artists she works with and our internal team at MTG daily.”

She has been at the helm of tour marketing with Church’s The Gather Again Tour, which so far has reported over 547,000 in ticket sales, following his 2019 Double Down Tour that reported over 770,000 in ticket sales and set the attendance record at Nissan Stadium. That concert saw Church become the first artist in the venue’s history to headline a solo stadium show.

Powers has also led tour marketing at MTG for Shelton since his 2017 tour, including his latest Friends and Heroes 2021 Tour, which sold over 152,000 tickets across 14 sold-out markets.

MTG has also worked with stars including Shawn Mendes, Little Big Town, Kenny Chesney, The Lumineers, George Strait, Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran.

 


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Coachella hits ‘Floatchella’ with cease-and-desist

A small town US music festival has changed its name after being served with a cease-and-desist letter by organisers of Coachella.

Held in Mystic, Connecticut, Floatchella is run by the Mystic Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Mystic Merchants Association and features local bands and a pop-up paddle-craft rally. Its first two editions drew “over 300 paddle craft in the water and scores of people watching on land”.

However, the festival has now been renamed Floatfest, Music on the Mystic River following a complaint from Coachella promoter AEG Presents. It must also dispose of any merchandise bearing the Floatchella logo.

“The Chamber was surprised that our non-profit in the southeast corner of Connecticut garnered the attention of AEG Worldwide”

“The Chamber was surprised that our non-profit in the southeast corner of Connecticut garnered the attention of AEG Worldwide for a Coachella naming situation,” Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce president Bruce Flax tells CelebrityAccess. “The event was never mistaken as having any association to Coachella for the 1,500 people who attended the last two years. We will lose some money form the merchandise we need to dispose of, but we will weather the storm and the event will live on as Floatfest, Music on the Mystic River.”

AEG has not commented on the case.

It is not second time in recent months that Coachella has moved to protect its trademark. Last year, Goldenvoice sued Live Nation over a music event called ‘Coachella Day One 22’, organised by Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians, which was advertised on Ticketmaster.

 


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Mushroom, AEG unveil Frontier’s new leadership team

Australia and New Zealand’s leading concert promoter, Frontier Touring, has unveiled a new leadership structure for the company.

Frontier says that the new structure has been created to “ensure the legacy, mission, and culture of [the company] is preserved and nurtured” following the passing of its founder Michael Gudinski in March 2021.

The company’s new executive team will comprise four members of the current leadership team, all of whom are elevated to new roles within the company: Dion Brant as CEO, COO Susan Heymann, CMCO Reegan Stark, and CCO Andrew Spencer.

The executive team will report to the Frontier Touring Board, comprised of Jay Marciano (chairman and CEO, AEG Presents and COO, office of the chairman, AEG), Matt Gudinski (chairman and CEO, Mushroom Group) and Dion Brant (CEO, Frontier Touring).

In addition, Adam Wilkes moves to the role of chairman of the Frontier Board in conjunction with his position as president and CEO, AEG Presents Asia Pacific, which he has held since 2016.

“I know Dad’s legacy and the future of Frontier is in safe hands”

In 2019, Frontier (a subsidiary of Mushroom Group) entered into a strategic joint venture with AEG Presents.

Matt Gudinski says: “I couldn’t be happier announcing our new Frontier executive team. Mushroom Group is built on our great people, which is something we’ve always valued first and foremost.

“I’m thrilled that moving forward Frontier will be led by four incredibly dedicated, experienced, and strong leaders in Dion, Reegan, Susan, and Spence, working closely with myself, Adam, and the AEG Presents team.

“Frontier was founded on strong relationships, an artist-first approach and a never-ending passion for music and I know Dad’s legacy and the future of Frontier is in safe hands. There are exciting times ahead for the company.”

Marciano adds: “Michael Gudinski was a man of endless passion, energy, and creativity, with an innate sense for the business, and it was clear no one person could replace him. All of us who worked together on this new structure were bound by the same sense of duty: we’re committed to properly and thoroughly stewarding Michael’s vision for the future of Frontier.”

In the next 12 months, Frontier has shows planned with Ed Sheeran, Foo Fighters, Billie Eilish, Nick Cave and Warren Ellis, Justin Bieber, Midnight Oil, Paul Kelly, Tame Impala, Wallows, Courtney Barnett, Leon Bridges, Tyler, The Creator, The Killers, Robbie Williams, Lorde and more.

 


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South Park to stage 25th anniversary concert

Long-running American animated series South Park is to mark its 25th anniversary with a special birthday concert in the US, produced by AEG Presents.

MTV’s Comedy Central brand has announced the renowned franchise, which premiered on 13 August, 1997,  will be celebrated with South Park: The 25th Anniversary Concert at the 9,500-cap Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado.

The concert will be headlined by the show’s co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, as well as US rock bands Primus and Ween, and will take place on Wednesday, 10 August. Tickets are priced $99 (€90).

“We’re excited to go home and play at Red Rocks, a place that’s been known for hosting the most legendary artists and musicians. Until now.”

Music has been pivotal to the series since its inception, with more than 85 original songs written in the history of the show, which has spanned more than 300 episodes so far.

“We’re so excited to go home and play at Red Rocks, a place that’s been known for hosting the most legendary artists and musicians. Until now,” says a statement by Stone and Parker.

Parker and Stone are executive producers, along with Anne Garefino and Frank C Agnone II. Eric Stough, Adrien Beard, Bruce Howell and Vernon Chatman are producers.

 


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AEG Presents partners with NFT platform Autograph

AEG Presents has announced a multi-year partnership with Web3 firm Autograph, an NFT (non-fungible token) platform co-founded by NFL legend Tom Brady.

The link-up will officially launch at this month’s BUKU Music + Art Project in New Orleans, which will feature acts including Tame Impala, Tyler, The Creator, Alison Wonderland, Baby Keem and Glass Animals from 25-26 March.

Variety reports the BUKU alliance will include a graffiti artist auction featuring eight artists’ works as NFTs. Attendees will also be offered the chance to mint their own NFT festival posters onsite.

“This partnership offers our festival-goers a new, innovative format to commemorate their experiences and create custom NFT collections,” says AEG Global Partnerships MD Andrew Klein. “There is such excitement about BUKU’s return. Autograph will help amplify that special feeling of the festival to a broader community and drive a deeper engagement with the audience.”

“Festival culture creates an opportunity to build and create communities at scale using Web3”

Autograph will also work on similar activations for AEG Presents brands such as Electric Forest, Hangout Music Festival and Firefly.

“Festival culture creates an opportunity to build and curate communities at scale using Web3,” adds Autograph CEO Dillon Rosenblatt. “Our goal is to create an experience that lives digitally and physically to enhance the festival attendees’ overall experience. We are thrilled to kick-off our partnership with AEG Presents through an interactive experience at BUKU defined by celebrating the connection between art and technology.”

AEG’s Coachella Valley Arts & Music Festival recently auctioned 10 lifetime passes to the event as part of a series of NFTs, which saw 10 Coachella lifetime passes sold for a combined $1.5 million (€1.3m).

 


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Long hot summer: Festivals expand for 2022

Wireless is the latest festival to announce an expanded format, ahead of what looks to be a bumper 2022 festival season.

This year, Europe’s biggest celebration of contemporary Black music will take place at three of its former sites over two weekends in July.

The Festival Republic-promoted festival will kick off on 1–3 July at London’s Crystal Palace Park, where it took place in 2021 for the first time in history.

The following weekend (8–11 July), Wireless will simultaneously take place at its traditional home of Finsbury Park in London and Birmingham’s NEC –  where it last took place in 2014.

Festival Republic today announced blockbuster headliners including A$AP Rocky (UK exclusive), J. Cole (UK exclusive), Tyler, The Creator (London exclusive), Cardi B (UK exclusive), Nicki Minaj (EU exclusive), Dave and SZA (EU exclusive).

Wireless is the latest in a long line of festivals to expand after two relatively festival-free summers.

“Adding the fourth festival day as inclusive for all previously bought three-day tickets was our way of saying thank you”

Tomorrowland (Belgium), Primavera (Spain), Mad Cool (Spain), Standon Calling (UK), InMusic (Croatia) and Summer Breeze (Germany), Rock en Seine (France), Splendour (UK) and Wonderbus Columbus (US) are among the existing festivals that have been extended for 2022.

Festival organisers have cited a number of reasons for extending their usual format including meeting pent-up demand, recouping losses, celebrating anniversaries and rewarding fan loyalty.

InMusic, Croatia’s biggest open-air music festival, added a fourth day as an all-inclusive for fans who had held onto their three-day ticket.

“Adding the fourth festival day as inclusive for all previously bought three-day tickets was our way of saying thank you for all the love and support,” says Ivana Jelaca from InMusic.

“We were moved by the messages of support we received after the pandemic hit and we were trying to figure out the best way to thank everyone for their understanding and patience.

“We choose to focus on the audiences that have been supportive and active in the years prior to the pandemic, as the two-year loss of live music content has had a huge impact on the quality of their lives.”

“People are hungry for live music and in need of a carefree festival weekend among friends”

Jelaca says that the festival’s 15th anniversary, which is delayed two years due to pandemic-related cancellations, is also cause for an extended celebration.

Alex Härtel from Silverdust, which promotes Summer Breeze in Germany, says the promoter has similar reasons for extending the festival.

“The reason is our 25th anniversary! Summer Breeze has been around since 1997 and despite three cancellations (two due to covid) we want to celebrate 25 years of existence with our loyal fans and many friends and bands from all over the world,” says Härtel.

Moreover, Härtel says the festival is capitalising on pent-up demand for live music: “People are hungry for live music and in need of a carefree festival weekend among friends,” he adds.

While each of the organisers says that their extended edition will benefit vendors, hotel properties and other entities who typically profit from the event, the added day won’t make a dent in the losses the festivals have suffered from the pandemic.

“Fans will expect more in 2022 than they accepted in 2021”

“If anything, an additional festival day generates greater expenses – programming and production-wise – and as an independent mid-sized festival with a limited capacity there are only so many tickets on sale,” explains InMusic’s Jenca.

Silverdust’s Härtel echoes that sentiment, adding: “The extended programme on the first day wouldn’t justify a big enough increase in ticket price to recoup what two years of covid did to the festival. We are doing this to create something special for the fans, the crew and everyone involved with Summer Breeze.”

It isn’t just increased demand festivals will have to meet this year but also increased expectations said AEG Presents CEO of European Festivals Jim King.

“The emergence from multiple lockdowns created a unique demand that is unlikely to repeat in the same way,” he explains.

“Fans will expect more in 2022 than they accepted in 2021. We will see an increasing upturn in expectation from fans as the year plays out and they have been to more and more shows and there will be a need for the industry to up its game to keep fans attending and buying more tickets in the later part of the year.”

 


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AEG links with Team Love for Bristol festival

AEG Presents has teamed with events company Team Love to launch new 30,000-cap metropolitan festival Forwards in Bristol, UK.

Taking place in Clifton Downs from 3-4 September, Forwards will be headlined by Jamie xx and The Chemical Brothers, with other acts to include Little Simz, Roisin Murphy, Khruangbin, Fred Again, Kojey Radical, Caribou, Self Esteem, Kae Tempest and Shygirl.

The two-day festival aims to create positive change through social initiatives and a space for discussion and debate.

In addition to two main music stages, it will feature The Information – a space “driven by activism, examination, debate and understanding on today’s current affairs and cultural issues, plus challenging the role of music festivals”, including a programme of experts, disruptors, artists, writers and thinkers from “across the social and political spectrum”.

Working with associated partner Big Team CIC, Forwards will offer work experience, shadowing and paid job placements across the festival for people who have “historically been excluded from and are under-represented in the festival and events industry”, supported through partnerships with local youth organisations.

“Now, more than ever, it’s important that our events invite debate and challenge the audience to do more to make the world a better place”

“We’re proud to be unveiling a new festival for a new era of festivals, in the best city in the world, our hometown of Bristol,” says Team Love co-founder Tom Paine. “Now, more than ever, it’s important that our events invite debate and challenge the audience to do more to make the world a better place, as well as being a place to come together, dance, and make memories.

“Alongside one of the most exciting lineups we have ever brought to Bristol, we’re creating an area called The Information, to provide a space for urgent conversations from some of our favourite activist and political voices. We’re partnering with CICs to nurture new talent, provide community catering at the heart of the festival and give back to our communities through the festival ecosystem.”

As part of its sustainability focus, the festival team will collect data and create a three-year strategy on how to monitor and reduce their GHG emissions, develop a circular, responsible production and consumption ethos while promoting social cohesion.

Jim King, CEO, European Festivals, AEG Presents, says the event marks the next chapter in the growth of AEG’s festival division.

“We are really delighted that this next journey starts in Bristol, a historic city with an important culture and music heritage and spirit,” he says. “Forwards begins a new relationship with our partners Team Love, who we have respected from afar for many years and who epitomise all that this great city stands for in live music and culture. Their vision anchors Forwards to the heartbeat of this great city and all it has to offer.”

Weekend tickets go on sale on Friday (25 February), priced from £75 (€90).

 


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