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Gilberto Santa Rosa plays three sold-out shows in FL

Latin music star Gilberto Santa Rosa played three back-to-back, sold-out shows in Florida over Valentine’s day weekend, in some of Florida’s first concerts of 2021.

Santa Rosa, known as the Caballero de la Salsa (Gentleman of Salsa), played to socially distanced audiences outside Dr Phillips Center of the Performing Arts, in Orlando, on Friday 12th and the Fillmore (3,230-cap.), in Miami Beach, on Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 February.

The shows, promoted by Loud and Live, took place in a socially distanced format, with Santa Rosa performing songs including ‘Perdóname’, ‘Conciencia’, ‘Que Alguien Me Diga’, ‘Si Te dijeron’ and ‘Sin Voluntad’ to a crowd separated into Covid-secure bubbles (Dr Phillips show pictured).

“I am very happy to have returned to the stage and received that special energy that the public gives me,” says the five-time Latin Grammy/Grammy winner. “It has been a great privilege to be able to make these presentations in Orlando and Miami after a year of totally atypical concerts.

“We are proud to have brought to the public of Orlando and Miami the live experience they’ve been missing”

“The entertainment industry must come back, and we all have to push ourselves and make the necessary adjustments to make that happen. Hopefully, my experience this weekend will be an incentive to energise our industry wisely and safely.”

Reflecting on the shows, which included guest appearances from La India, Tito Nieves, Victor Manuelle and Aymée Nuviola, Loud and Live CEO Nelson Albareda comments: “This weekend marked the return live music, while at the same time following the pertinent regulations established during the pandemic for the artists and the industry.

“We are proud to have brought to the public of Orlando and Miami – our home – the live experience they’ve been missing and longing for.”

Loud and Live, a leading promoter of Latin music in the US, partnered with Latin America’s Move Concerts at the tail end of 2019.

 


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Concerts cancelled over Hurricane Dorian concerns

A host of concerts in Miami and Orlando were cancelled or postponed this weekend due to concerns over Hurricane Dorian, the storm that has been battering the Bahamas since Sunday (1 September) and is approaching the Florida east coast.

In anticipation of the hurricane, which hit the Bahamas as a category five storm, the Rolling Stones brought their show at Miami’s 65,326-capacity Hard Rock stadium forward one night to Friday evening. The concert had previously been rescheduled from April to account for Mick Jagger’s heart surgery.

Chris Brown was also due to play in Miami, but cancelled his show at the 20,737-capacity BB&T Center on Sunday evening. No replacement date has been announced. An automatic refund will be issued to customers who bought tickets through Ticketmaster online or by phone. Those with physical tickets will need to return to the outlet they purchased from.

Miami-born Pitbull cited unsafe travel conditions as the reason for postponing an appearance at the Los Angeles County Fair on Sunday. Pitbull’s management told fans the rapper could not “safely depart from Miami” due to Dorian’s approach and rescheduled his appearance for 12 September.

Pitbull’s management told fans the rapper could not “safely depart from Miami” due to Dorian’s approach

Sunday ticket holders were still able to enter the fair, with the same passes being eligible for the alternate date. Refunds are also available via the Ticketmaster website.

Mexican musician Marco Antonio Solis rescheduled his two Florida shows over the weekend for 20 October at Orlando’s Amway Center (20,000-cap.) and 26 October at the AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami (21,000-cap.).

Dutch DJ Afrojack cancelled his Miami appearance at Story Nightclub (1.400-cap.) on Friday.

Hurricane Dorian will move “dangerously close” to Florida’s east coasts and the coasts of Georgia and Carolina over the course of today. “Life-threatening storm surges” are expected in those areas, whereas “devastating winds and storm surges” continue over Grand Bahama.

At the time of writing the category three hurricane was around 105 miles east of West Palm Beach, Florida.

 


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The internet of things: The future of event tech

Speaking at Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg last month, Eventbrite’s Elsita Sanya outlined the ticketing company’s take on the future of festival tech. Holograms like the one of Dio at Wacken, drones and VR helmets are all interesting and headline-grabbing technologies, she said – yet the future of live experiences could be changed much more profoundly by the advent of the internet of things (IoT).

Her case in point: the magical wristband at Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Based on advanced sensor reader technology, this allows visitors to check into the park in seconds, skip queues at rides by pre-booking them and pay cashlessly throughout the park. This technology massively improves the attendee experience, and at the same time is providing the operators with invaluable real-time data on visitors’ movements in the park and their preferences. This helps optimise visitor flow, capacity-planning and marketing.

The technology, Sanya said, is also applicable to festivals, where a wristband/sensor combination would allow for much faster and seamless entry, cashless payments, on-site localisation and navigation (eg. for food delivery or emergency services), real-time crowd heatmaps and the easy implementation and control of separate/VIP areas.

IoT is an example of technology unobtrusively delivering real benefits to both fans and festival promoters

Sanya said IoT at events is an example of technology unobtrusively delivering real benefits to both fans and festival organisers. “Too often we are stuck with technology, when what we really want is just stuff that works,” she said, referencing Douglas Adams.

According to Sanya, Eventbrite is working on bringing this technology to event promoters around the world, concentrating its attention in four areas: access control, attendee presence, payments and identity. All four, she said, increase revenue per ticket, increase revenue streams or save money for organisers, as well as providing greater freedom and capabilities for fans.

The internet of things, integrated into a ticketing/registration system and mobile at-event support apps, Sanya said, will transform the attendee experience. For promoters, “enabling IoT is an important way to make their event better to grow sales, and for attendees these innovations will bring the bespoke experience every organiser strives to create,” she concluded.

 


Elsita Sanya is Eventbrite’s general manager for Germany. The company has successfully trialled its IoT wireless wristbands at several US events, including Okee, Maker Faire New York and SnowGlobe.

Disney World shuts out touts with fingerprinting

As an increasing number of Japanese ‘idol’ groups, including Arashi and Momoiro Clover Z, turn to facial-recognition technology to prevent touting, the world’s leading theme park has turned to a much older form of biometrics – fingerprinting – in a bid to tackle ticket fraud.

Walt Disney World in Florida, which was visited by over 52 million people last year, last month quietly redoubled its efforts to crack down on resold, fraudulent, stolen and shared tickets by extending its programme of fingerprinting to include children as young as three. The Ticket Tag scheme has been in use at other parks for at least 10 years, but it is the first time Disney has asked for fingerprints from guests aged between three and nine, reports CNN Money.

Fingerprint scanners are in place at at least three American stadia

Parents uncomfortable with having their children’s prints scanned can volunteer their own fingers instead, although Disney has made it clear that “Ticket Tag does not store fingerprints” and says the scans are “immediately discarded”.

According to Forbes, fingerprint scanners are in place at at least three American stadia – the Yankee Stadium in New York, AT&T Park in San Francisco and Coors Field in Denver – albeit it only for fast-track purposes. But with face scanning already gaining ground in Asia, how long before we see some in-demand concert tickets irretrievably tied to buyers’ fingerprints?

 


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