fbpx

PROFILE

MY SUBSCRIPTION

LOGOUT

x

The latest industry news to your inbox.

    

I'd like to hear about marketing opportunities

    

I accept IQ Magazine's Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

French indie promoter targets international acts

French promoter Take Me Out has launched new indie night They’re Gonna Be Big (TGBB), which is dedicated to giving emerging international acts their first show in Paris and securing them a place on the company’s roster.

Take Me Out officially launched in early 2022 as a collaboration between concert organiser Speakeasy and Paris rock club Supersonic, which hosts the recurring theme night.

Run by live music industry veteran Jean-Louis Schell, Speakeasy worked with acts such as The Libertines and Kasabian, while Supersonic has welcomed the likes of Yungblud, The Warlocks, Nick Olivieri and Soccer Mommy.

“The idea behind Take Me out is to build on the strengths of both companies to spot talent early on and book their gigs on French territory,” Schell told IQ earlier this year. “The plan is to take artists way beyond small-sized venues such as the Supersonic.”

“The plans are to organise five to six nights a year”

TGBB hosts five bands over two stages: the 300-cap club and 140-cap Supersonic record store two doors down. Recent acts have included English Teacher, Memes, Courting, Pale Blue Eyes and Honeyglaze.

The club night returns on 24 August with Jaws The Shark, Hallan and The Rills, with more names to be announced.

“The plans are to organise five to six nights a year, depending on the opportunities,” says Schell. “The Supersonic and Take Me Out warmly welcome suggestions.”

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

EAA adds Europe’s largest indoor arena to membership

The European Arenas Association (EAA) is adding Paris La Défense Arena (cap. 38,000) to its membership.

The arena is the fourth new member to join the association since the easing of restrictions began for live events, and boosts EAA’s membership to 37 arenas across 20 European countries.

Inaugurated in October 2017 in a location 15 minutes away from downtown Paris, the arena is touted as Europe’s largest multifunctional venue with a capacity of 10,000 to up to 38,000 for concerts, sports events and corporate events.

Raphaëlle Plasse, booking and operations director La Défense Arena, says: “La Défense Arena is very pleased to join the EAA. The last 10 years have been more demanding than ever for the venues. All across Europe, venues are facing challenges; sharing these challenges, talking about them and working together to resolve them, are the best way to take control of our actions and development.

“The EAA has always been at the forefront of our sector’s progress. Becoming a member of the EAA means being part of our sector’s development and being able to work together to be the best at what we do.”

“Becoming a member of the EAA means being part of our sector’s development”

Olivier Toth, president at EAA, adds: “We are delighted to welcome Paris La Défense Arena into our association as we continue to embrace new members and to share our collective expertise.

“Our recently published figures are a stark reminder of the devasting impact Covid has had on the live events sector with an average audience reduction of 73% in 2020 and a further 23% reduction in 2021 making it even more important for us to strengthen our membership and work together on our recovery.”

As a result of the Covid-19 closures, the latest EAA research reveals total attendance for member arenas in 2020 fell 73% from 19 million to 5.1m. Last year saw further falls of 23% to 3.9m. The total number of live events fell 59% from 2,915 in 2019 to 1,181 in 2020, although they registered a slight increase of 2% last year to total 1,202.

In 2020, music events accounted for 48% of total events compared to 23% for sports events. At the end of last year, sport accounted for 52% of total events compared to 25% for music events, although music still made up 50% of total audiences compared to 33% for sports.

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

AEG Presents France head on ‘patchy’ ticket sales

AEG Presents France head Arnaud Meersseman has told IQ he is hopeful of a strong summer ’22 for the touring business, despite warning of an “iffy” next few months.

As countries across Europe tighten limits on live shows amid an alarming rise in Covid cases, the French authorities went against the grain  last week by lifting capacity restrictions on standing at indoor concerts following a campaign by French live music association Prodiss.

Meersseman says a scheduled meeting of the government’s defence counsel on Wednesday (24 March) could lead to new measures being introduced, but does not expect the country to follow Austria’s lead and return to a full lockdown.

“We’ll see what comes out of it, but cases are rising,” he says. “I think the booster campaign needs to get into gear. Plus, if we get some nice weather from March, April onwards, then summer feels OK. The start of spring feels a bit iffy. Between the booster shot campaign and fair weather returning, it’s going to be iffy from now until March, basically.

“You can see that the weather definitely has an impact. If you look at Spain, Italy and Portugal; on top of having extremely high vaccination rates, they’re having very nice weather and their cases aren’t rising. It’s as soon as you get people back inside, basically, that the cases are rising again.”

Some shows are doing very well, some are doing slow. It’s hard to get a read on the market

The Paris-based promoter says the domestic live circuit has been hard to get a handle on up to this point due to “patchy” ticket sales across the board.

“Some shows are doing very well, some are doing slow,” he says. “It’s hard to get a read on the market. You get weeks where you get huge bumps and you have no idea what it’s due to.”

Meersseman jokes: “I’ll always tell agents, it’s due to my amazing marketing, but it’s really weird. It’s not understandable.”

AEG Presents opened Paris office in 2018, expanding into what it referred to as “one of Europe’s most important and vibrant markets for live music”, and hired Meersseman, formerly of Nous Productions and Fimalac/Miala, as general manager and VP.

Speaking as part of IQ‘s recent feature investigating the impact of the latest Covid surge on the European live business, Meersseman said it was worrying that countries with a similar vaccination rate to France were battling new coronavirus waves. Demonstrations and violence broke out in Belgium and the Netherlands over the weekend in protest at fresh restrictions.

“There is some worry, there is some anxiety,” he said. “We were at 12,000 cases a day a week ago, and now we’re at 20,000. So it’s getting to that point where it trickles and then suddenly, boom, it becomes exponential.

“I don’t think we’ll go back into full lockdown. But in terms of our business, well, there’s not much going on anyway – even for domestic acts – in November and December. I think there could be some impact there, we’ll see. But I’m not very positive about it and I’m not feeling super positive about January/February either.

“Domestic tours, maybe they go ahead in February/March. But for international tours, it feels highly unlikely that anything happens between January and March because you start losing territories like Holland and Germany and suddenly your tour isn’t viable economically anymore.”

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Virtual concerts startup Stage11 attracts superstars

Immersive music experience startup Stage11 has announced partnerships with world-famous artists Martin Garrix, David Guetta, Snoop Dogg, Ne-Yo and Akon.

The news follows a €5 million seed round led by Otium Capital, a European venture capital fund backed by Stage11 founder and CEO, Jonathan Belolo.

Belolo is the co-owner of French record label Scorpio Music, which has a 45-year history in the music industry.

Belolo is joined by co-founders Jean-Philippe Braud and Gregory Dhonner, the co-founder and director of business development for Profirst, a luxury event agency for brands in fashion, beauty, and art (Armani, Chanel, Kering, L’Oréal, LVMH).

Also joining as co-founder is Mani Nordine, the president of American Artists Company, specialising in managing A-list artists and celebrities bookings (Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Nas & Lady Gaga).

Stage11 is using the funds to onboard strategic hires, sign key artist and brand partnerships and build its technology platform

Stage11 says it will use the funds to onboard strategic hires, sign key artist and brand partnerships and build its technology platform.

Amongst those new hires are executives who have previously worked for the likes of Assassin’s Creed, Facebook Oculus, Ferrari, Happy Feet, LVMH, Marvel Avengers, Microsoft Kinect, Nike, and Virgin.

Founded in 2020, with offices in both Paris and LA, Stage11 aims to tap into several of today’s fastest-growing markets including gaming, AR/VR, virtual events, and digital goods.

The company claims that it’s “setting out to redefine the interactive music experience” by combining gaming, mixed reality, and digital collectables.

It will achieve this by “building a new creative canvas for artists, allowing them to invite fans to live, play, and create inside their performances and musical worlds”.

We are combining genres, realities and cultures to build something bold, thrilling and timeless

“These worlds combine immersive gameplay sequences, life-like performances, cinematic narratives and exclusive digital collectables,” according to Stage11.

“Fans can not only discover and collect but actually use these interactive NFTs to create and share unique personalised content and even perform with their favourite artists.”

Stage11 can be accessed on desktop and mobile and the company’s first music experience is set to debut in 2022.

“As a gamer and sci-fi nerd, It feels like I’ve been dreaming about the metaverse my entire life,” says Belolo.

“Now that as a society we’re on the cusp of making it real, I find myself blessed to be part of an incredible team setting out to explore the new frontier. Building immersive music events and experiences is just the first step.

“We are on a journey together to reimagine the way artists and brands connect, even co-create, with their fans and audiences. We are combining genres, realities and cultures to build something bold, thrilling and timeless — yet accessible and fun.”

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

AEG Presents’ Rock en Seine expands to four days

AEG Presents’ Rock en Seine festival in France is expanding to four days for its return in 2022.

The annual Paris festival, which typically welcomes 120,000 festivalgoers across three days, will take place from 25–28 August next year in Domaine National de Saint-Cloud.

The 2022 event will be the 18th edition of Rock en Seine, which hasn’t taken place since 2019 due to the pandemic.

The 2022 event will be the 18th edition of Rock en Seine, which hasn’t taken place since 2019 due to the pandemic

Jim King, CEO of European festivals at AEG Presents, says: “It’s very exciting to announce the return and a new vision for Rock en Seine, with one of the most impressive line-ups in the history of the festival. Headliners Stromae, Tame Impala and Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds will be joined by a deep supporting line up including Kraftwerk and Jamie xx.

“To match this incredible line-up, the new format for the festival sees it grow to four days. Paris has always provided a cultural heart beat in Europe and with its incredible city centre location in the beautiful gardens of Saint Cloud on the banks of the River Seine, Rock en Seine provides four days of music in one of the world’s truly great cities that is easily accessible for music fans from all over Europe.”

Other artists will include La Femme, The Blaze plus FKJ, Aurora, DIIV, Los Bitchos, Malik Djoudi, Jehnny Beth and The Limiñanas. More are still to be announced, including a special Rock en Seine exclusive on Thursday 25 August.

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Global Citizen returns with Paris, NY, Nigeria shows

Global Citizen Live has announced the line-ups for the upcoming benefit concerts in New York, Paris and Lagos, Nigeria, which will raise funds to combat poverty and provide greater access to Covid-19 vaccines.

The three concerts will take place on 25 September, alongside simultaneous events in London, Rio de Janeiro, Seoul, Los Angeles, Sydney and more cities still to be announced. The Global Citizen Live events, which will be broadcast live around the world, are part of of Global Citizen’s ‘Recovery Plan for the World’, a year-long campaign which calls on governments, philanthropists and the private sector to commit financially to the global recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

Global Citizen Live follows previous Global Citizen events including Global Goal: Unite for Our Future, which took place last summer and raised funds for vaccine development, and 2021’s Vax Live, which focused on securing equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines.

In New York, Coldplay, Billie Eilish, Camila Cabello, Jennifer Lopez, Lizzo, Meek Mill, Shawn Mendes, Alessia Cara, Burna Boy, Cyndi Lauper, Jon Batiste and Lang Lang will perform on the Great Lawn in Central Park, while the Paris event, held on the Champ de Mars, will feature Ed Sheeran, Doja Cat, DJ Snake, HER, Black Eyed Peas, Christine and the Queens and Angélique Kidjo. The Lagos concert (venue TBC) will include performances from Femi Kuti, Davido, Tiwa Savage and Made Kuti.

Coinciding with the UN general assembly preceding the G20 meeting (October) and Cop26 summit (November), Global Citizen Live focus will call on leaders to fund:

“This remains a global crisis … It will only end with global equitable access to vaccines”

Katie Hill, senior vice-president and head of music, entertainment and artist relations for Global Citizen, says: “Over the last year and a half, we’ve seen music bring communities together and inspire action during one of the most challenging times of our generation. We’re excited to join these incredible artists to unite people across the globe on 25 September as we hold world leaders and business leaders accountable to rectify the damage caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. As we carefully resume Global Citizen’s live events, we couldn’t be more grateful to each of these artists for donating their time and performances to make an impact through this urgent campaign.”

David Beasley, executive director of the UN World Food Programme, adds: “Global Citizen’s support is critical as we all work together to reach the most vulnerable people and communities. We’re facing an unprecedented crisis in 2021: 41 million people have famine literally knocking at the door. The price tag to stop their suffering is about US$6 billion. We need funding and we need it now.”

“As wealthy countries are well on their way to reopening and returning to normal life, we now face a two-track pandemic of haves and have-nots,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of the World Health Organization, comments. “Over 75% of the more than 4bn doses administered to date have occurred in just ten countries, while only 1% of people in low-income countries have received a dose. We cannot disregard this gross inequity or become complacent.

“This remains a global crisis, with emerging variants emanating from under-vaccinated parts of the world continuing to threaten everyone’s lives and livelihoods. It will only end with global equitable access to vaccines and other life-saving medical supplies. That’s why I am pleased to support Global Citizen Live and join Global Citizen in their calls to public and private leaders to share the doses, financing, knowledge, technology and political solidarity needed to end this pandemic.”

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Live Nation GSA announces Download Festival Germany

Live Nation GSA (Germany, Switzerland, Austria) is launching a German edition of Download Festival, the UK’s premiere rock event.

Download Germany will take place on 24 June 2022 at the Hockenheimring, a motor racing circuit situated in the Rhine valley near the town of Hockenheim, which Live Nation GSA head Marek Lieberberg has prior experience with.

Lieberberg’s former company Marek Lieberberg Konzertagentur (MLK) previously held Rock’n’Heim at the same location, in cooperation with Live Nation.

The festival took place annually from 2013 to 2015, welcoming around 40,000 fans across three days for the first two years. In 2015, the event was reduced to a one-day event.

MLK also housed both Rock am Ring and Rock im Park, started by Lieberberg in 1985 and 1993 respectively, the twin festivals that from 2022, will be programmed by eventimpresents and CTS Eventim-owned DreamHaus.

At the time of writing, Download Germany has not announced any artists or released tickets for the 2022 event

At the time of writing, Download Germany has not announced any artists or released tickets for the 2022 event.

Download Germany will be the UK brand’s fourth sister event. Other sites are Download Australia, which would have debuted in 2020, Download Madrid and Download France in Paris (both of which last took place in 2019).

The UK event, promoted by Festival Republic, this year took place over the 18–20 June weekend as part of the second phase of the UK government’s scientific Events Research Programme (ERP).

Download Pilot welcomed 10,000 metal fans to the hallowed grounds of rock in Donington Park, Leicestershire, to enjoy a fully-fledged festival experience with no social distancing, no masks and moshing allowed. The event was the UK’s first major camping festival of its kind since lockdown.

The flagship event is set to return to the UK between 10-12 June 2022 with a line-up that includes Deftones, Korn and Megadeath.

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Paris test results: Concerts don’t pose extra Covid risk

The findings from a recent test concert in France show that attending a concert is not associated with an increased risk of transmission when certain hygiene and testing protocols are followed.

The clinical trial, organised by French live music association Prodiss and Paris hospital AP-HP under the banner ‘Ambition Live Again’, took place on 29 May at the Accor Arena (20,300-cap.) in Paris with DJ Etienne de Crécy and the band Indochine.

The trial compared the risk of contamination between two randomised groups: an experimental group of 4,451 people who attended the concert and a control group of 2,227 people who did not attend the concert.

In the first stage, 6,968 people took a rapid antigen test within three days of the concert. Of those, 290 people had ‘non-inclusion criteria’ – one of whom had a positive rapid antigen test – and were not allowed to participate in the experiment.

On the day of the concert, all participants had to present proof of their negative test at the entrance, either downloaded on the TousAntiCovid-Carnet app – which was trialled for the first time at a public cultural event – or in paper format.

Throughout the event, participants’ compliance with wearing masks was assessed by an artificial intelligence tool

The health protocols at the event included the continuous wearing of surgical masks by all participants, reinforcement of hand sanitisation, and optimised ventilation of the room. The bars/restaurants and the smoking areas were closed. Bottles of water were distributed at will.

Throughout the event, participants’ compliance with wearing masks was assessed by an artificial intelligence tool from images captured in real-time by cameras placed in the room thanks to a scientific collaboration with Datakalab.

During the four hours that attendees were present in the AccorArena, the overall compliance with wearing a mask was evaluated at 91%.

Seven days after the event, all participants were required to take a PCR test. The number of participants with a positive PCR test was eight among the 3,917 participants in the experimental group, compared to three among the 1,947 participants in the control group.

Among those eight participants in the experimental group, five were already positive on the day of the concert, excluding the possibility of contamination during the show. Some participants did not return their saliva samples or did not come to the concert.

Prodiss says that its primary aim now is to dissuade the government from a “stop and go” approach

In conclusion, the study showed a similar infection rate in people attending the indoor, standing concert while wearing a mask (0.20%) compared to the people not attending (0.15%). (The incidence rate observed in the study corresponds to the estimated incidence rate in France in the two weeks preceding the event.)

AP-HP is now submitting the analysed data from the study for publication in a peer-reviewed journal, while Prodiss has requested a meeting with the government to discuss next steps.

The association says that its primary aim now is to dissuade the government from a “stop and go” approach and avoid the live industry shutting down when the incidence rate goes up.

The Paris results follow similar positive data out of studies in multiple other European countries, all of which showed that live events do not pose a risk to public health while Covid-19 is still a threat.

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Ambition Live Again: 5,000 attend French pilot show

Five thousand people packed into Paris’s Accor Arena with no social distancing on Saturday night for Ambition Live Again – the long-awaited pilot event with which the French live industry hopes to persuade the government to allow it to reopen as soon as possible.

Headlined by popular French pop-rock band Indochine, the concert, organised by industry association Prodiss and the AP-HP (Assistance publique-Hopitaux de Paris), forms part of a clinical trial which aims to demonstrate – as in Germany, Spain and, most recently, the Netherlands – that live events can be held safely during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Contrary to earlier announcements that the show would admit people with Covid-19, all 5,000 attendees had to test negative twice before entry – once via an antigen test performed in the previous three days, and then again with a rapid test on the day of the show (29 May). Like the Barcelona pilot but unlike the UK’s Events Research Programme, all concertgoers were also required to wear masks inside the arena.

Fans are also requested to provide a PCR test seven days after the show (5 June).

“Do not forget to return your saliva sample this Saturday, 5 June,” Prodiss urged attendees on social media. “The research team needs it! We are counting on you!”

Due to the 9pm curfew still in place in France, the concert took earlier than planned, with Indochine on stage by 6pm, according to the AFP. Etienne de Crécy played a DJ set at 5pm.

As of 28 May, just 37% of the French population had received one Covid-19 vaccine. As a result, vaccination status was not taken into account “in this experiment because most young people are not vaccinated in France yet. In fact, we specifically selected participants between 18 and 45 years old who mostly aren’t vaccinated,” AP-HP’s Jean-Marc Treluyer tells ABC News.

Results from the Ambition Live Again study – which will compare infection rates among those in the arena with a 2,500-person control group not selected to attend the show – are expected in June.

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Paris test concert finally rescheduled

After a series of stops and starts, French live music association Prodiss and Paris hospital AP-HP have finally been given the green light for the Paris test concert.

The clinical trial was initially announced in February and should have taken place in April but the scheme got “stuck on the government side”, with the ministry of culture proving “unreachable” amid the new lockdown measures.

The experiment, dubbed ‘Ambition Live Again’, will now take place on 29 May at the Accor Arena (20,300-cap.) in Paris with DJ Etienne de Crécy and the band Indochine.

The trial will compare the risk of contamination between two randomised groups: an experimental group of 5,000 people will attend the concert and a control group of 2,500 people will not attend the concert.

The trial will compare the risk of contamination between two randomised groups

The concertgoers will be required to take an antigen test a maximum of 72 hours before the concert and a PCR test seven days after the concert, while the control group will take a self-test on the day of the concert.

Once inside, attendees will not socially distance, though everyone will be required to wear a mask.

The scientific team specified that the participants could not be people at risk and must be in an age group between 18-45 years old and live in Ile-de-France. A full list of criteria can be found on the Ambition Live Again website.

The sister pilot in Marseille was also hit by delays and has not yet been rescheduled. As reported in IQ, a thousand people are expected to attend the two shows at the Dôme (cap. 8,500) in Marseille, which will see performances from French hip-hop group Iam.

See IQ‘s extensive timeline of live music pilot projects here and read about them in-depth here.

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.