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  1. #1

    Default Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    A friend emailed me about Tommy Emmanuel the guitarist coming to town for a conert Monday.
    This guy is widely considered to be the greatest acoustic guitar virtuoso EVER,
    he's got 10 albums to his credit......I saw him in Houston and it was one of
    the greatest shows ever......
    There are a lot of videos of him performing on youtube

    When I saw him in Houston, I would guess there were 10,000 people there,
    but I was sort of surprised that he's performing tomorrow night at the
    Norman Public Schools Performing Arts Center.

    Which brings me to my poll. I can't EVER remember since the major
    renovation seeing a relevent jazz or acoustic or vocal act come to the Civic
    Center for a concert. Before the renovation, I saw LOTS of them.....

    There are hundreds of acts that could never fill the Ford Center or
    even half of it, but could nicely fill two shows at the Civic Center and with
    it's great acoustics, it would be a night to remember. Wednesday night,
    Alison Krauss is playing the Ford Center, but they're blocking out half of it......
    and it's pretty much sold out, but this lady's talent will be ruined by the
    Ford Center's rotten acoustics, and she could have gotten the same
    head count by playing a two night engagement at the Civic Center and everyone
    would have seen a concert worth remembering......

    So there you are..........is the Civic Center doing a good job at promoting
    to mid range MUSICAL talent?

    or not

    and if not, who at the Civic Center or the city should be contacted to improve
    matters. I for one think that after 77 million dollars of OUR tax dollars
    were used to rebuild the joint, that we ought to be seeing some shows there
    outside of Fiddler on the Roof once a year.......

  2. #2

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    No, they are doing a horrible job at booking that place. It is OKC's only real venue of that size and that is actually the scale of most concerts today. I saw Coldplay there and Natalie Merchant there. Both sounded great and were much more enjoyable than many of the "garbage can" concerts I've been to at the Ford Center or Coca-Cola Event Center and I'm not a huge fan of either band.

    The reality is that the theater circuit is where most live shows are these days and Oklahoma City either has lazy, very genre specific promoters and/or the venues we have are trash. The infrastructure, from bookers to venues, is just really weak for live music entertainment in Oklahoma City. I just can't figure out if the support just isn't there or if we just don't have any promoters that pay attention.

  3. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    I don't know the answer to this. It seems to be that they keep pretty booked with all their resident performing arts companies as well as Celebrity Attractions and other tours, but it's true they seem to be mostly theatre-related.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Quote Originally Posted by zuluwarrior0760 View Post
    A friend emailed me about Tommy Emmanuel the guitarist coming to town for a conert Monday.
    This guy is widely considered to be the greatest acoustic guitar virtuoso EVER,
    he's got 10 albums to his credit......I saw him in Houston and it was one of
    the greatest shows ever......
    There are a lot of videos of him performing on youtube

    When I saw him in Houston, I would guess there were 10,000 people there,
    but I was sort of surprised that he's performing tomorrow night at the
    Norman Public Schools Performing Arts Center.

    Which brings me to my poll. I can't EVER remember since the major
    renovation seeing a relevent jazz or acoustic or vocal act come to the Civic
    Center for a concert. Before the renovation, I saw LOTS of them.....

    There are hundreds of acts that could never fill the Ford Center or
    even half of it, but could nicely fill two shows at the Civic Center and with
    it's great acoustics, it would be a night to remember. Wednesday night,
    Alison Krauss is playing the Ford Center, but they're blocking out half of it......
    and it's pretty much sold out, but this lady's talent will be ruined by the
    Ford Center's rotten acoustics, and she could have gotten the same
    head count by playing a two night engagement at the Civic Center and everyone
    would have seen a concert worth remembering......

    So there you are..........is the Civic Center doing a good job at promoting
    to mid range MUSICAL talent?

    or not

    and if not, who at the Civic Center or the city should be contacted to improve
    matters. I for one think that after 77 million dollars of OUR tax dollars
    were used to rebuild the joint, that we ought to be seeing some shows there
    outside of Fiddler on the Roof once a year.......
    Amen zulu...99% of the events at the Civic Center are foo foo crap for which I have no interest in ...I'm guessing it's a mixture of crap venues and lack of solid promoters that force us music fans to head up north an hour and a half...That really sucks on weeknights

    The civic center is a great place for music...Unfortunately they don't use it for it nearly enough

  5. #5

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Quote Originally Posted by zuluwarrior0760 View Post
    A friend emailed me about Tommy Emmanuel the guitarist coming to town for a conert Monday.
    This guy is widely considered to be the greatest acoustic guitar virtuoso EVER,
    he's got 10 albums to his credit......I saw him in Houston and it was one of
    the greatest shows ever......
    There are a lot of videos of him performing on youtube

    When I saw him in Houston, I would guess there were 10,000 people there,
    but I was sort of surprised that he's performing tomorrow night at the
    Norman Public Schools Performing Arts Center.

    Which brings me to my poll. I can't EVER remember since the major
    renovation seeing a relevent jazz or acoustic or vocal act come to the Civic
    Center for a concert. Before the renovation, I saw LOTS of them.....

    There are hundreds of acts that could never fill the Ford Center or
    even half of it, but could nicely fill two shows at the Civic Center and with
    it's great acoustics, it would be a night to remember. Wednesday night,
    Alison Krauss is playing the Ford Center, but they're blocking out half of it......
    and it's pretty much sold out, but this lady's talent will be ruined by the
    Ford Center's rotten acoustics, and she could have gotten the same
    head count by playing a two night engagement at the Civic Center and everyone
    would have seen a concert worth remembering......

    So there you are..........is the Civic Center doing a good job at promoting
    to mid range MUSICAL talent?

    or not

    and if not, who at the Civic Center or the city should be contacted to improve
    matters. I for one think that after 77 million dollars of OUR tax dollars
    were used to rebuild the joint, that we ought to be seeing some shows there
    outside of Fiddler on the Roof once a year.......
    I can't find a single thing online about tommy emmanuel performing in Norman tomorrow. Can you direct me to some info?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    The Civic Center's marketing department it sounds like, needs
    to do some headhunting for a "marketer to the promoters".........
    someone who can demonstrate to some of these mid range
    talent booking agents that the Civic Center can and will provide
    an audience for these musicians. They need to feed off the success
    of the Ford Center in terms of ability to sell out......(The Ford Center
    is rated one of the top ten concert venues in the nation in terms of
    market penetration)

    It's sad that the Civic Center has truly world class acoustics and the single
    only musical act on their calendar for the next YEAR is taking place
    at stage center, which sounds like a prison cell block..........

    We need a marketeer for the Civic center who is largely compensated on
    how many acts he/she gets in the door. They have PLENTY of room
    on the calendar.......and the current staff just isn't getting it done......

    3 years ago, Don Henley was scheduled to play the Civic Center and
    called in sick instead and after that....I've hardly seen ANYONE advertised....

    If the venue was good enough for Don Henley, then it should be good
    enough for X, Y and Z acts...........

  7. #7

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Here's the website for Tommy Emmanuel in Norman:

    www.standingovationok.com:luralura

  8. #8

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    I know the ten tenors have a 2 week period booked there in January of 2008. I don't know if you would consider this foo foo or music? Maybe both? I've seen them live already and they really aren't very foo foo. Guys if you have to take your lady to an opera...this is the one to catch. They do everything from Pavarotti to Queen!! They make it very entertaining also.

  9. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Foo Foo huh....tell that to the tens of thousands of people that attend events there every year. Did you know that just in the Musicals, OKC has 12,000 season ticket holders? Did you know that the tickets for the more than week long run of Wicked that just ended were sold out in a matter of hours?

    Oh and maybe you forgot about Wynton Marsalis playing there when it opened.

    Or how about the Philharmonic, Canterbury, Ballet OK, Lyric Theatre, etc. all of which have thousands of people completely fill the place all the time. Perhaps you just aren't aware of the events that occur there. And I'm not sure where someone got that the musicals next year are at the Stage Center because that's so completely wrong I won't even comment more on it.

    I think people need to educate themselves on how busy the place is. It may not be the kind of even that YOU want to see there, but that doesn't mean that there aren't thousands and thousands of people headed down there every week to see something. You can't really look at the calendar on the civic center site though. It's never up to date on what's happening because many of the ongoing events like the Phil aren't always on there.

  10. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Oh, and just so you know, Celebrity Attractions does the same promoting in Tulsa. And generally, the same show will be in both cities, just not in the same year. One exception was Blast! being in both cities the first time it came here. But one example is Wicked, it ran in Tulsa last year, and then OKC this year. They do a great job of getting quality musicals here in town...and because of the subscriber base (that is higher than in most cities twice our size), they can get what they want.

  11. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Quote Originally Posted by bombermwc View Post
    Did you know that the tickets for the more than week long run of Wicked that just ended were sold out in a matter of hours?
    16 sold-out shows in a matter of hours.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Quote Originally Posted by bombermwc View Post
    Oh, and just so you know, Celebrity Attractions does the same promoting in Tulsa. And generally, the same show will be in both cities, just not in the same year. One exception was Blast! being in both cities the first time it came here. But one example is Wicked, it ran in Tulsa last year, and then OKC this year. They do a great job of getting quality musicals here in town...and because of the subscriber base (that is higher than in most cities twice our size), they can get what they want.
    Not talking about musicals bomber...talking about booking quality mid major musicians like Tulsa gets all year long

    And yes I do consider Wicked as foo foo

  13. #13

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Mid major musicians? The OKC Phil does a pretty good job booking top-named musicians from around the world.

    But y'all probably aren't talking about the Phil

  14. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Yeah, like Bebe Neuwirth, even though she apparently disappointed.

    She's a pretty big name.

    I'd like some examples of these mid-major artists that we're not getting.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Bebe Neuwirth??....Way up there on the foo foo list

    What I mean by mid major is every band short of the major artists who can fill the Ford or Cox

    Most NEVER stop of in OKC for one reason or another

  16. #16

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    I'd like some examples of these mid-major artists that we're not getting.
    Here's some similar sized venues in CA that might help you get a feel for the theater circuit that is not serviced in Oklahoma City.

    Wiltern
    Warfield

    You could also look up any House of Blues to get an idea of what skips OKC as well. Really this size is where most of the live music is happening these days. The arena circuit has shrunk to a handful of acts each year, most of which have been around for at least 20 years.

    I'm not saying the Civic Center has to be the place to get Oklahoma City to show up on the theater size concert circuit, but it is pretty much our only true music venue of that size. It does seem to be intent on staying within a small niche and it fills it well, but that doesn't mean it needs to be or should be restricted to that niche. Honestly, I would much rather see a more appropriate venue emerge that's dedicated to touring concerts of that size (Continental anyone? Oh wait, too late...). So, maybe complaining about the Civic Center's line up is misdirected, but there just isn't anywhere else to direct it right now.

    Again, the coca-cola center is there, but it's no acoustic improvement over the Ford Center as its not really built specifically for performing arts either. Really, it’s under-use only shows the lack of effort or, possibly, support for such shows. However, you would think Oklahoma City is big enough now that it could support shows of 2-2.5k people for any marginally well known band.

    Or, maybe not. It’s often hard to tell sometimes what kind of entertainment market we have here.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Bomber,

    Noone said musicals were being advertised at the CC and playing Stage Center,
    but next week Eric Johnson is performing, another world class guitarist,
    and he's NOT playing at the Civic Center, he's playing at Stage Center instead.
    That's the only mid range musical act outside the philharmonic on their
    calendar or anyone else's for the civic center now or in the future......

    Wynton Marsalis at the opening???????
    That was in 2003!
    What since???????
    Did he ever come back???, how bout his brother Branford??

    If not, why not.......???

    When the Civic Center was designed, a consultant was paid in excess
    of $1 MILLION DOLLARS!!!! to consult just on acoustics and after another
    6 million extra being invested on top of the original 70 million dollar budget,
    we now have an auditorium capable of showcasing any musician's talent
    in a way that no other venue could in this part of the country, and what
    are we doing with it?????? Showtunes......philharmonic........Showtunes......
    Eric Johnson at Stage Center........
    Nothing wrong with any of that, but if you have to look as far back
    as Wynton Marsalis at the opening to find an example of a mid range musical
    act without costumes and dancing, then our Civic Center is being underutilized....

    Examples you want of mid range musical acts?

    George Winston
    (He filled the Civic Center before the remodeling in 1996)
    He comes three months ago and plays at the Jazz lab in Edmond
    for 30 bucks a head????? WHY???????????

    Michael W. Smith
    (He filled a church in tulsa, AND okc three months ago.......why not the civic ctr???

    Steven Curtis Chapman
    (He filled Redhawk Stadium 1 year ago, why not ever the civic center

    Wynton and Branford Marsalis
    Rippingtons
    Dave Koz
    David Sanborn
    Diana Krall
    Tommy Emmanuel.....

    Given the time and inclination, I could add literally 10,000 other examples
    to this list of acts that could fill the civic center, but have not, because
    they've never come!!!

    Noone ever said the place isn't hopping, Godspell, Annie, Millie.........seen
    em all........

    All we're saying is that a world class CONCERT HALL, ought to have
    a concert every now and again not consisting of the Philharmonic..........
    (nothing wrong with the Philharmonic either btw)

  18. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Quote Originally Posted by zuluwarrior0760 View Post
    Michael W. Smith
    (He filled a church in tulsa, AND okc three months ago.......why not the civic ctr???

    Steven Curtis Chapman
    (He filled Redhawk Stadium 1 year ago, why not ever the civic center
    I don't think those guys have any interest in playing a venue like the Civic Center.


    Noone ever said the place isn't hopping, Godspell, Annie, Millie.........seen
    em all........

    All we're saying is that a world class CONCERT HALL, ought to have
    a concert every now and again not consisting of the Philharmonic..........
    (nothing wrong with the Philharmonic either btw)
    You sure sound like you have a problem with the Philharmonic and musical theatre. I personally have not heard of any of those people you list except a few, so maybe this is just an issue of personal preference.

  19. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Yep (or should I say No for the vote, lol), I agree with everyone that the Civic Center is far far underutilized. It should have tons of concerts and operas all of the time yet it seems to hardly be open unless the Philharmonic is in season.

    I hope the city leaders can do more to attract big name concerts and have them play at the civic center. Sure the touring circuit could stay at the Ford Center or the Cox, but the fine music scene should be rolling through the Civic Center.

    Actually, OKC has several other fine theatres which are underutilized - one prominent example being the Kirkpatrick Theatre for Performing Arts at OCU. We need to make OCU more part of the community - it is OUR university (not that OU isnt, but that is in suburban Norman while OCU is right in central OKC). OCU has lots to offer in the way of concerts, plays, theatrical performances, and sporting events yet I doubt much of the city is even aware of what's there.

    There's great space in OKC like the Civic Center downtown and the Kirkpatrick Theatre (also the Wanda Bass Music Center) that isn't being utilized but should be. There should be all sorts of fine music going on, which would significantly boost OKC's image as an upscale city!
    Oklahoma City, the RENAISSANCE CITY!

  20. #20

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Instead of meaningful dialogue, this has descended into
    a flamefest over musical tastes and people advocating
    no musical acts who are not guests of the Philharmonic.

    Haven't heard of anyone on my list? Make your own list.....

    One thing is for certain, if it's not Wynton Marsalis at
    the grand opening, or a guest of the Philharmonic,
    then they haven't been to the Civic Center since the remodel......

    We all LOVE the Philharmonic. OKC is lucky to have one....many cities
    don't.....

    We also love Broadway Muscials.....OKC is lucky to have them........many
    cities don't......

    But we have a WORLD CLASS CONCERT HALL, and in terms of dedicated
    concerts with any sort of frequency, this facility has seen a lot less
    activitity since the renovations than it did before, and 77 million dollars
    of our tax dollars say that it shouldn't remain......

    Why is it that saying something should be better and more, means
    you automatically must be accused of saying that what's here now is
    wrong and less?

  21. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    All I'm saying is that it seems pretty booked up to me and I'm not convinced that your not being a little biased simply because they just don't bring in the performances that you would like to see.

    Whereas if all those acts were coming in and that was preventing things like Wicked and Rent and Phantom of the Opera from coming in, I'd be dissatisfied.

    Although, I would prefer to see a good mix, and don't forget the Civic Center also has two smaller theatres in addition to the Thelma Gaylord Performing Arts Center. I agree it seems SOMEONE isn't doing their job.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    [QUOTE=jbrown84;105367]All I'm saying is that it seems pretty booked up to me and I'm not convinced that your not being a little biased simply because they just don't bring in the performances that you would like to see.

    _____

    You're right, I must be incredibly biased to want to see SOMEONE.............ANYONE
    give a concert at the Civic Center. Right now there's noone, ever!

    Whereas if all those acts were coming in and that was preventing things like Wicked and Rent and Phantom of the Opera from coming in, I'd be dissatisfied.

    _____

    Now that statement has no bias to it at all.......

    ________

    I think the Civic Center should aspire to have ONE dedicated concert
    act a month. I really think that will allow more than enough dates
    for Annie, the Phantom and all their friends.......along with the Philharmonic
    and all their guests........

    And as to bias for acts "I" want to see.........let's change it and use
    the list you want to provide.....as long as they are dedicated concert acts,
    not musicals, because "THAT'S" what the poll's about......
    and if you're not into anything but showtunes, then I'd submit that
    many others in Oklahoma City might be into concerts, and would like to hear more than ONE A YEAR in the acoustics of the Civic Center........

    Anyone who discounts those acoustics should go listen to any of these
    broadway shows or the Philharmonic at the Ford Center, and then
    it'll be clear........

  23. Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    I don't know what your problem is.

    I clearly said that if the roles were reversed, I'd be biased as well. And maybe biased isn't the right word. I just mean that it's possible someone is completely satisfied with the Civic Center's offerings, and a completely different person might be satisfied if all they offered were these mid-major performers and no musicals or traveling shows.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    The Beacon is another good example:

    Beacon Theater New York NY - tickets, seating chart, info at New York City Theatre.com

    You know, another place that seems to rest on its laurels is the Zoo Ampitheater. Maybe it's not big enough or nice enough, but we also miss a lot of outdoor concerts that go to ampitheaters like the Smirnoff, Coors, Shoreline, etc. It's very rare you get any act there whose vintage is not at least 20 years old. But, again, maybe we're just an older market as far as entertainment goes. Maybe our younger demographic isn't into live music or it's just too small...?

  25. #25

    Default Re: Poll: Is the Civic Center doing a good job at bringing in musical acts

    Admittedly I don't get out much but seeing Yo-Yo Ma in person at the Civic Center is still something I occasionally remember with great fondness. The facility is very, very nice - especially from what I remember as a much younger person. But I don't the capacity. Is it actually large enough for the concerts that are being discussed? I know some events require a pretty decent attendance. I think the Yo-Yo Ma event was underwritten, too.

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