Elton John latest in string of big acts coming to James Brown Arena, Bell Auditorium

Sunday, March 4, 2012 3:13 PM
Last updated Sunday, July 1, 2012 5:16 PM
  • Follow Business

Elton John is the latest big name act coming to the Augusta Entertainment Complex.

Back | Next
Tonya Blackburn, 31, of Grovetown, poses inside James Brown Arena with two Elton John tickets she bought on Craigslist. It will be her first time seeing him in concert.  EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
Tonya Blackburn, 31, of Grovetown, poses inside James Brown Arena with two Elton John tickets she bought on Craigslist. It will be her first time seeing him in concert.

The popular artist and his band will perform Tuesday at James Brown Arena to a sold-out audience. Other famous performers slated to appear this year at James Brown Arena and Bell Auditorium include Lady Antebellum, The Mass Chaos Tour featuring Godsmack and Staind and Steve Harvey and Pastor Shirley Caesar, who will perform at the Pre-Father’s Day Gospel Explosion.

Augusta area residents are responding well to such performers, said Katie Wells, the marketing director for the entertainment complex. While Augusta has a reputation of being a last-minute market, fans have been turning out for their favorite performers, she said.

There have been 11 sellout shows since June, including Keith Urban, The Scream Tour, Vince Gill and Amy Grant, Jerry Seinfeld, Tyler Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots, Riverdance and Elton John, Wells said.

For Lady Antebellum’s upcoming show May 22, tickets sold out in three minutes. A second show, on May 23, was added within two hours, and there are only a few seats remaining, she said.

“I definitely think people are buying tickets. For certain events, people are certainly buying early, and they’re buying quickly. I think as long as people continue to do that and support these events, then we’ll be able to continue bringing in bigger and bigger acts,” Wells said. “We would love to see people buy early. I think that would increase the confidence of some of these promoters bringing in the events.”

From July 1, 2010, through June 2011, 289,739 people attended 108 events at the entertainment complex. Since July 1, 144,709 people have attended 49 events, Wells said.

“I think we feel, like everybody else in Augusta, that getting acts like Jerry Seinfeld and Elton John are a sign of things to come for this area. I think it is putting us on the map,” she said.

Tonya Blackburn, of Grovetown, is a huge Elton John fan and will be at Tuesday’s concert. Now 31, she has been a fan since she was 16. It will be her first time seeing him in concert, she said.

“I’m ecstatic. When they sold out of tickets, I did everything. I got on Craigslist. I was hoping to find some tickets, and I did get lucky and I found some floor tickets. His clothes are awesome, the glasses. He’s just a great entertainer. I’m thankful he’s coming to Augusta,” Blackburn said.

She said she was willing to drive to Atlanta or Charlotte, N.C., to watch him perform, but now she won’t have to.

Nicole Spensley, of North Augusta, said she bought her Elton John tickets online four minutes after they went on sale, despite having a special challenge.

“As soon as I heard that he was coming to town, my husband and I made plans to go, despite being nine months pregnant when he’s going to be here. He’s been my favorite artist since I was like 5 years old. I’ve never been able to see him in my hometown, so it’s really great that I don’t have to travel,” Spensley said.

She is due to have her baby three days after the concert, so she hopes she’ll be able to make it. This would be her fifth time seeing Elton John in concert, having caught previous performances in Charlotte and Columbia.

“I just love his music,” she said. “He puts on an amazing performance. He never disappoints.”

In the future, Global Spectrum, the company hired by the Augusta-Richmond County Coliseum Authority to manage James Brown Arena and Bell Auditorium, hopes to continue to land acts that are “the same level or bigger than Elton John,” said Monty Jones Jr., the general manager for the complex.

“We have been fortunate to get Elton and some of the other shows we have play the Augusta Entertainment Complex so far. We hope to just excel each year,” Jones said.

Global Spectrum will soon begin work on a VIP club lounge at James Brown Arena, which “will give added experience to patrons that attend events and become members,” he said.

UPCOMING

JAMES BROWN ARENA

Tuesday: Elton John

March 16: Harlem Globetrotters

March 24: Steve Harvey’s Final Comedy Tour

April 13: The Mass Chaos Tour featuring Godsmack and Staind

May 13: The 2012 Mother’s Day Festival with Anthony Hamilton and Maze featuring Frankie Beverly

May 22 and 23: Lady Antebellum

June 16: Pre-Father’s Day Gospel Explosion starring Shirley Caesar

BELL AUDITORIUM

March 10: Little Roy & Lizzie Show

March 16: Don Williams

Comments (8) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Just My Opinion
6251
Points
Just My Opinion 03/04/12 - 07:32 pm
2
0
I think it's GREAT that we're

I think it's GREAT that we're getting these big acts here in Augusta. Sure, the prices of tickets are pretty steep, but if that's what it takes, then that's what it takes. Besides, by the time you look at buying tickets to an event in another city, buying gas and food, and possibly a hotel room, you're really coming out much better having it here in Augusta!

wildman
1217
Points
wildman 03/05/12 - 04:20 am
0
0
I remember going to see the

I remember going to see the Globe Trotters in Macon and it was great fun. Meadowlark Lemon and Curly Neal were the best. Checked on prices, think I will have to stay home and hope they come on TV. I appreciate that they are bringing better acts to Augusta. Thanks!

Discussionstarter
501
Points
Discussionstarter 03/05/12 - 08:47 am
1
0
Ticket prices are too high.

Ticket prices are too high. There is a one to two hour delay before the tickets are sold on-line. The EJ concert is tomorrow night and I still have not received my tickets in the mail. Called the phone number on the ticket confirmation; little help.

itsanotherday1
48198
Points
itsanotherday1 03/05/12 - 09:08 am
0
0
"It is what it is" on ticket

"It is what it is" on ticket prices. As long as people will pay it, they will charge it.

What I don't understand though is that EJ tickets were for sale in the scalper markets days before they officially went on sale to the public. How does that happen?

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 03/05/12 - 11:35 am
0
0
No question that bringing in

No question that bringing in larger acts is desirable. I'll take variety as much as popularity in this case too. But the ticket prices should be lower. Going out of town for a show is something people do b/c they are intent on seeing that particular act and paying for travel expense is what it is. The kinds of acts that are here and coming here are not indicative of those types of acts/followers. 2 out of the 9 shows pending are going to draw folks from far and wide. The other shows, not so much. My bet is that price of those shows will be overpriced as well. So there you have the discrepancy. Kudos on bringing in shows, let's make sure the cost of the ticket isn't the sacrifice for getting them.

Little Lamb
48907
Points
Little Lamb 03/05/12 - 11:45 am
0
0
From the story: There have

From the story:

There have been 11 sellout shows since June, including Keith Urban, The Scream Tour, Vince Gill and Amy Grant, Jerry Seinfeld, Tyler Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots, Riverdance and Elton John, Wells said. For Lady Antebellum’s upcoming show May 22, tickets sold out in three minutes. A second show, on May 23, was added within two hours, and there are only a few seats remaining, she said.

The free market will determine the ticket prices.

belle
311
Points
belle 03/05/12 - 11:57 am
0
0
I ordered mine the second
Unpublished

I ordered mine the second they went on sell and had no problem. As for the price, it reflects the same as Charlotte and Atlanta so I don't see why ours should be less. Discussionstarter....i ordered my tickets online and never received the print-out tickets, if you ordered online, take your confirmation number to the box office window and they will print your ticket out. I recommend doing that today or tomorrow a.m.

LaTina Emerson
0
Points
LaTina Emerson 03/05/12 - 02:55 pm
0
0
For further information about

For further information about the James Brown Arena Club Lounge, contact the Augusta Entertainment Complex's sponsorship sales manager Monica Slay at (706) 262-4566, said Katie Wells, the marketing director for the entertainment complex.

David Parker
7923
Points
David Parker 03/05/12 - 03:02 pm
1
0
This same market determines

This same market determines the acts themselves and rather than acting as a beakon and drawing artists to Augusta, it restricts the public's exposure to new sensations.

I believe in the idea that a viable music scene isn't built from the top down or by booking huge acts to give the city some "street cred". You build a scene with consistent local performances in a variety of places, with a variety of music styles, and a variety costs. I don't know, that's how Athens did it but hey, what do those dudes know right?

Back to Top

Search Augusta jobs