Familiarity breeds content
While Live Nation entering a new sector might have already established competitors breaking a sweat, there’s no denying it’s a sign of faith in the potential of the market.
Last year, Michel Boersma was hired to lead Live Nation’s emerging markets unit from Dubai. As SVP of family entertainment and theatre, he’s tasked with creating family shows and tours in the region that can also be rolled out globally.
It’s very difficult to go into these markets with pop or music related content,” Boersma explains. “Sometimes these markets may not be ready technically and venue-wise, but often there is a theatre space or small arena that we can bring a family or theatre show into. Additionally, there is more political support for family entertainment than there sometimes is with music.”
“There is more political support for family entertainment than there sometimes is with music”
Boersma reports a successful first year with tours including bringing Madagascar Live! to Asia in partnership with Dreamworks, launching a Banksy exhibition in Australia that’s now touring Asia and taking LED show iLuminate to Saudi Arabia where Monster Jam was also introduced together with Feld.
Broadway Entertainment Group opened an office in Dubai before Live Nation, having relocated from London two years ago to focus on the Middle East and Asia, where venues and theatres had started to be built. CEO Liz Koops says Disney’s Beauty and the Beast is its greatest success to date after touring the musical for 48 weeks internationally.
Attendance ranged from 65-85% capacity – depending on the maturity of the market – with ticket prices ranging from $75–100 (€67–90).
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