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Madonna to ‘vigorously’ contest legal action

Madonna and tour promoter Live Nation say they will “vigorously” defend themselves against a lawsuit filed by two fans after the singer started a recent concert more than two hours late.

Concertgoers Michael Fellows and Jonathan Hadden are suing the singer, along with Live Nation and New York’s Barclays Center over the 65-year-old singer’s 13 December performance at the venue.

The pair, who say the show was advertised as starting at 8.30pm but did not begin until 10.30pm, are seeking unspecified damages, alleging “false advertising, negligent misrepresentation, and unfair and deceptive trade practices”, adding they “would not have paid for tickets” had they known the event would not finish until 1am.

“Defendants failed to provide any notice to the ticketholders that the concerts would start much later than the start time printed on the ticket and as advertised, which resulted in the ticketholders waiting for hours,” reads the lawsuit, launched in Brooklyn federal court.

The lawsuit also alleges that Madonna has a “long history of arriving and starting her concerts late”.

“We intend to defend this case vigorously”

The Queen of Pop and Live Nation have issued a joint statement in response to the claims.

“Madonna‘s just completed, sold out 2023 Celebration Tour in Europe received rave reviews,” it says. “The shows opened in North America at Barclays in Brooklyn as planned, with the exception of a technical issue December 13th during soundcheck

“This caused a delay that was well documented in press reports at the time. We intend to defend this case vigorously.”

Madonna performed three nights at Barclays Center last month as part of the North America leg of her 40th anniversary tour. The Brooklyn venue is yet to comment on the case.

 


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Madonna sued by fans for starting concert late

Madonna, Live Nation and Brooklyn’s Barclays Center are being sued in the US by two fans who allege the singer started her recent New York concert two hours late.

Madonna performed three nights at Barclays Center last month as part of the North America leg of her ongoing 40th anniversary Celebration Tour. Plaintiffs Michael Fellows and Jonathan Hadden say the 13 December show was advertised as starting at 8.30pm but did not commence until 10.30pm.

Fellows and Hadden add they “would not have paid for tickets” had they known it would not finish until 1am, and claim “false advertising, negligent misrepresentation, and unfair and deceptive trade practices” in the lawsuit filed in Brooklyn federal court.

“Many ticketholders who attended concerts on a weeknight had to get up early to go to work and/or take care of their family responsibilities the next day,” states the filing. “Defendants failed to provide any notice to the ticketholders that the concerts would start much later than the start time printed on the ticket and as advertised, which resulted in the ticketholders waiting for hours.”

As the show ended past midnight, the pair – who are suing for unspecified damages – say they were “confronted with limited public transportation, limited ride-sharing, and/or increased public and private transportation costs”.

“Madonna had demonstrated flippant difficulty in ensuring a timely or complete performance”

The lawsuit is seeking class action status due to the 65-year-old allegedly having a “long history of arriving and starting her concerts late”.

“Madonna had demonstrated flippant difficulty in ensuring a timely or complete performance, and defendants were aware that any statement as to a start time for a show constituted, at best, optimistic speculation,” it adds.

The Guardian reports that Fellows and Hadden are accusing Madonna, Barclays Center and tour promoter Live Nation of “unconscionable, unfair, and/or deceptive trade practices” for the late start time, which they argue represents a breach of contract and “a wanton exercise in false advertising”, as well as “negligent misrepresentation”.

ABC7 reports the pop icon faced similar legal action during her 2019 Madame X Tour, but the suits were later voluntarily dismissed.

Madonna, Live Nation and the Barclays Center have been approached for comment.

 


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Ex-Live Nation NY president starts indie promoter

Anthony Makes, former president of Live Nation’s New York divisions, has started his own independent concert promotions company, Brooklyn Made.

Makes became president of Live Nation New York in April 2018, following more than a decade at Bowery Presents, where he served as lead promoter.

The promoter now plans to use his more than 30 years experience in the business to build his own company “from the ground up” from his home in Brooklyn.

“After having a front row seat to everything that was happening in the corporate concert promotion world, I really felt now was the right time to leave Live Nation to do this,” comments Makes.

“With Brooklyn Made, I’ll take all of that first-hand knowledge I’ve acquired and use it to build a new independent experience for venues, artists and fans.”

“With Brooklyn Made, I’ll take all of that first-hand knowledge I’ve acquired and use it to build a new independent experience for venues, artists and fans”

The new promotions company has already established deals with New York venues CMAC/Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center (15,000-capacity) and the Capitol Theatre (1,800-capacity).

“One of our main goals here is to work with quality people, quality venues and quality artists,” says Makes. “I’ve personally known the CMAC folks for over 12 years, and I’ve been working with Peter Shapiro and the Capitol Theatre for almost a decade. These are both world class venues so it’s a thrill to begin this journey with them.”

Brooklyn Made also plans to promote shows in venues such as Madison Square Garden (20,789-cap.), Barclays Center (19,000-cap.), Radio City Music Hall (6,015-cap.), Beacon Theatre (2,894-cap.), Town Hall (1,495-cap.), Hammerstein (2,2000-cap.), the Apollo (1,506-cap.) and Carnegie Hall (2,804-cap.).

Makes also owns the bar Givers & Takers in Brooklyn, with plans underway for Brooklyn Made to add more bars and, eventually, venues to its portfolio.

IQ has contacted Live Nation for comment.

 


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New GM for New York’s Barclays Center

Matt Felker has been appointed general manager of Barclays Center, the 17,000-capacity New York arena jointly operated by AEG Facilities and BSE Global (formerly Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment), with Joe Zino taking his place as GM of the nearby Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

The internal promotions, effective 1 October, follow news of the impending departure of Barclays Center regional GM Steve Rosebrook.

“Steve and his AEG Facilities colleagues have done a tremendous job building world-class arena operations teams at both venues,” says Brett Yormark, CEO of BSE Global, which oversees both Barclays Center and the 16,800-cap. Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum (in full, ‘NYCB Live: Home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum’). “We thank Steve for his years of service and wish him all the best in his next chapter.

“We’re excited about the future with Matt and Joe and congratulate them on their well-deserved promotions”

“We’re excited about the future with Matt and Joe and congratulate them on their well-deserved promotions. They have been integral leaders in the operation of Barclays Center and NYCB Live.”

“We were very fortunate to have an experienced executive like Steve operating these two venues for us,” adds senior vice-president of AEG Facilities, Richard Krezwick, to whom both GMs will report. “His leadership has prepared Matt and Joe for assuming bigger roles.”

In addition to Barclays Center and NYCB Live, BSE operates Brooklyn’s Paramount Theatre and Webster Hall, as well the Brooklyn Nets basketball team. In May, it expanded its advisory board to include a London chapter, comprising Mumford & Sons/Omeara’s Ben Lovett, Universal Music A&R man Louis Bloom, Barclays’ head of sponsorships and media, Tom Corbett, manager James Sandom (Red Light Management), Sarah Stennett, CEO of First Access Entertainment, and James Worrall of sports conference Leaders.

 


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Jack White, LN to livestream album launch show

The Live Nation Concert Series, Live Nation’s Twitter-based livestreaming platform, will globally stream the release show for Jack White’s third studio album, Boarding House Reach, this Friday.

Presented by Governors Ball festival, acquired by Live Nation in 2016 and which the former White Stripes frontman is headlining on 1 June, the show will take place at Warsaw (1,000-cap.) in Brooklyn, New York, this Friday. The stream will start at 10pm ET (2am on Saturday in GMT) and be broadcast exclusively at live.twitter.com/jackwhite.

According to Live Nation, all fans with tickets will be “required to keep their phones locked up” for the duration of the live stream.

“For everyone else joining via the live stream, their virtual front row ticket will unlock access to watch the magic of White’s new music and classic hits unfold straight from their mobile devices and desktops,” says the promoter.

“Virtual front row tickets will unlock access to watch the White’s new music and classic hits unfold straight from their mobile devices and desktops”

“There is nothing more spectacular than experiencing live music in person. That said, live streaming of concerts has become wildly popular the last few years as fans share and discover live music on their devices. Live streams also provide artists with another avenue to create deeper connections with their fans around the world.”

Twelve-time Grammy winner White will next month hit the road for his first world tour since 2014. The tour, in support of Boarding House Reach, will include a run of North American headline shows and festival dates, along with stops in London, Paris and Amsterdam.

The Live Nation Concert series on Twitter has previously livestreamed shows by Imagine Dragons, St Vincent, Steve Aoki, Zac Brown Band, Zedd, Train, Khalid and G-Eazy.

 


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Toni Braxton, Robin Thicke, Chuck D for first Grammy-branded concerts

The Recording Academy has revealed the details of its upcoming Grammy Park concerts, the first live events to bear the name of its famous music awards.

A joint venture with venue operator Upsilon Ventures, the 10 concerts will take place in Brooklyn, New York, from 5 to 8 May and feature the talents of more than 30 artists collectively honoured with over 40 Grammy and Latin Grammy Awards, including seven-time winner Toni Braxton, three-time winner Ne-Yo and Grammy nominees Robin Thicke and Aloe Blacc.

In addition to the paid events (which range between US$35 and, for VIP packages, $175) there are free gigs open to the public, such as a concert featuring emerging artists and jazz ensembles on Saturday 7 May and a gospel concert celebrating Mother’s Day (the American one) the following day.

The concerts will take place in the Kings Theatre, The LeFrak Center at Lakeside and Prospect Park Bandshell.

For a full list of performers (also on the bill are, among other things, a ‘Hip-Hop Groundbreakers’ event with Chuck D and a ‘Latin Mix’ with Natalia Lafourcade, Arturo O’Farrill and Alex Cuba) visit the Grammy Park website.