All of us here at Pollstar’s multi-story HQ located in beautiful Fresno, Calif., were taken aback when we first saw the tour announcement titled “International Pop Icons Britney Spears and Enrique Iglesias Announce North American Summer Tour.” Heck, we thought it was a brilliant pairing guaranteed to sell tickets.
But almost as soon as the announcement landed on our doorstep came published reports that Iglesias would not be on the tour. With the exception of personal issues, such as health, family or rehab, it’s not often to see such a high-profile artist announce a tour on nationwide TV followed by the other act on the bill saying it isn’t a go. So, what did happen?
First of all, there were plenty of questions about the original announcement, which read as if the tour might have been planned as a co-headline outing even though words like “co-bill” and “co-headline” were nowhere to be found in the press release.
However, the big question on the Pollstar campus was about ticket prices. After all, having two big names on the same bill isn’t cheap. Production costs, including transportation, lodging and meals for each artist’s road crews as well as the actual sets created for a tour this large, are bound to affect ticket prices.
Almost 24 hours after the initial tour announcement, there might be some answers. Referencing unidentified sources, TMZ reported that even though “the deal was actually very favorable to Enrique,” the singer wasn’t all that keen on opening for Spears.
“But just hours before Britney’s camp went public, Enrique was burning up the phone lines and the Internet, engaging various people connected with the tour in lengthy conversations in which he made it clear – he was, in reality, Britney’s opening act and he wanted out.”
Wait a minute. It’s not likely that a tour of this magnitude moved to the public announcement stage if there were no signatures on contracts and everybody involved hadn’t signed off on it. Would it?
Guess you have to read between the lines to sort that one out. A statement issued yesterday by Iglesias representative Gary Mantoosh said the singer wouldn’t tour with Spears “despite initial reports based on formal discussions of the possible run.”
Kind of makes it sound as if the pairing was far from being a done deal, doesn’t it? Despite whatever went on behind the scenes, it appears that Spears’ people believed everyone was close enough to the same page to announce the tour.
Meanwhile, at least one U.S. venue, Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y., has posted its April 9 general public onsale on Ticketmaster, listing prices ranging from $96 to $346.50. Factor in fees and additional taxes and that $96 ticket becomes $116.05 while the $346.50 ducat ends up costing the fan $372.75. What the listing doesn’t tell you is whether those prices were established before or after Iglesias bailed out.
But then, the only thing one can say for sure about Britney Spears’ tour is that Britney is on it.
Click here to read the TMZ article and here to read the original tour announcement.