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Music

Bruce Springsteen’s manager defends ticket price surges

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s newly announced 2023 tour is facing controversy after fans noticed Ticketmaster’s “dynamic pricing” for the booked dates. 

Some fans granted access codes were offered tickets priced between $1,000 and $5,000, which became the subject of backlash on social media. Springsteen’s manager Jon Landau has now issued a statement in defence of the tour’s ticket pricing model.

“In pricing tickets for this tour, we looked carefully at what our peers have been doing,” Landau said in a statement to The New York Times. “We chose prices that are lower than some and on par with others. Regardless of the commentary about a modest number of tickets costing $1,000 or more, our true average ticket price has been in the mid-$200 range. I believe that in today’s environment, that is a fair price to see someone universally regarded as among the very greatest artists of his generation.”

Ticketmaster have also come under pressure to react to the growing distress of fans as they anticipate other tours yet to be announced later in the year. While fans wonder if they’ll ever be able to afford concert seats again, the company has taken the unprecedented step of offering a more detailed look at the pricing structure through the lens of the first week of Springsteen’s ticket sales.

The events giant claims that only about 1.3 per cent of the tickets sold so far have gone for more than $1,000, with a total of 11.2 per cent of tickets earmarked to drop in price to meet demand. Meanwhile, 88.2 per cent of tickets are reportedly sold at fixed prices spanning from $59.50 to $399. Fortunately, 56 per cent of tickets were reportedly sold for under $200, including 11 per cent for between $150-200 and 7 per cent between $100-150. A further 18 per cent of tickets allegedly went for less than $99.

Ticketmaster’s defence statement read: “Prices and formats are consistent with industry standards for top performers.” The company explained that only 1.3 per cent of tickets sold went for over $1,000. “Promoters and artist representatives set pricing strategy and price range parameters on all tickets, including dynamic and fixed price points,” a Ticketmaster spokeswoman told the Times. “When there are far more people who want to attend an event than there are tickets available, prices go up.”

Springsteen and the E Street Band are set to begin the tour in February 2023, with dates booked around the world that will continue through until July.