• International Institute of Live Events

Why are concert tickets so expensive?

Updated: Dec 28, 2021

Why are concert ticket so expensive?

Concert ticket prices are at an all time high with tickets ranging from £25 - £150 a ticket! From 1990 taking inflation into account, prices have risen by 27%.


Drake’s Assassination Vacation Tour.

  • Standing - £120

  • Seated - £45 / £60 / £80 / £120 / £150


Muse 2019 show

  • Seats £51.50

  • Standing £84.50

In 1998 it cost £23.50 to see the Spice Girls at Wembley Stadium (about £39 in today's money).

When Taylor Swift played the same venue in June, ticket prices ranged from £55 to £120.


So why the increase?

The shows are more extravagant than ever.

Shows use the latest technology to give the audience an experience like they have never seen before. Take Kanye Wests Saint Pablo tour where he performed on a flying stage or Beyonce’s Formation tour where the set included a revolving video screen that was the size of a small apartment building.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TR-NufTzb0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_D9rJD7Fy6M


The one point that no one really talks about....

In 2008 studies showed that British people were spending more money on live music than recorded music. This caused ticket prices to rise above inflation. The live music sector was booming and the recorded music industry was shrinking, now the most important music company was not the record label it was in fact Live Nation Entertainment. The company has become economically more powerful than Sony Music and Warner Music Group, despite the company being less than a decade old.

In 1997 Live Nation saw an opportunity with the shift in the way listeners consumed music. By investing in the live element, at a time when people stopped spending money on recorded music, they became a major player in the music industry. In 2017 Live Nation Entertainment’s revenue was $10.3 billion.


Live Nation Entertainment owns various of music venues, festivals and has signed a range of different artists. In 2009, Live Nation and Ticketmaster, a concert promotion firm and ticketing company, reached an agreement to merge. The new company received regulatory approval and was named Live Nation Entertainment.


What does this mean?

This means that the Live Nation have signed exclusive contracts with artists to put on shows. They also own the venues that the artists perform at, and they own the ticketing company where you purchase tickets for the shows.

Live Nation currently have a monopoly of on the live music industry and this is one the biggest reason why your concert ticket prices are so expensive.


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References.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Live_Nation_(events_promoter)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Live_Nation_Entertainment

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-39926895

http://www.taittowers.com/portfolio/beyonce-formation-world-tour/

https://www.livedesignonline.com/concerts/building-beyonc-s-formation-tour

https://www.thefader.com/2017/01/05/concert-tickets-expensive-rihanna-beyonce-adele-drake

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/525885/ind-16-7-independent-review-online-secondary-ticketing-facilities.pdf

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42982769

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