The days are limited for the megastars/heritage acts including Springsteen, the Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Rod Stewart, Billy Joel, and Jimmy Buffett.Â Gary Bongiovanni, editor of Pollstar says “Year in and year out, those acts are good for 18,000 seats, but that part of the business is going to come to an end.”
We have seen new artists like Coldplay, Dave Matthews, and Radiohead develop into arena artists, but we don’t know if they will have same longevity as the classic rockers. Bongiovanni says, “Is John Mayer still going to be selling tickets 30 years from now, like James Taylor is 30 years past his prime? Pick a band. Is Green Day going to be replacing the Who?”
“We’re seeing more artists develop up to arena-level or amphitheater-headlining status for a couple of tours, then fade back down,” Bongiovanni says.
The truth is arena acts will be threatened because todays artists cannot make a genuine connection with the audience.Â Also, the audience today has more entertainment options. “The general industry view is there are going to be fewer arena-level tours and more business in the middle of the market, playing venues with anywhere from 4,000 seats to 12,000 seats,” Bongiovanni says.