Leadership / 12.27.18
Concert Capital: D.C. Is on Its Way to Becoming America's Next Big Music City
Washington Times (12/27/18) Fraley, Jason
The Washington, D.C., area is evolving into a mecca for musical acts, ranging from big stadium shows to smaller venues that offer artists and audiences a diverse line-up of entertainment. Destination D.C. estimated that in 2017 the District had a record 22.8 million visitors who spent $7.5 billion, and 86 percent were reportedly interested in “music in nationally known venues” while 68 percent cited “headliner entertainment” as important. The city's stadium venues attract a plethora of major artists and superstars, and production companies have had to adjust to increasingly gentrified neighborhoods and a live music industry that has suffered due to the Internet. “It's a seller's market because of all the places that have opened,” says Gary Oelze, founder of The Birchmere venue in Alexandria, Va. Meanwhile, promoter Michael Jaworek comments, “It's challenging when we cannot receive grants that nonprofits receive. And, because of liquor laws in Virginia, we cannot receive subsidy from the brands as they can in the District [and] Maryland.” Federally funded D.C. venues like Wolf Trap and the Kennedy Center are still going strong, and forward-thinking promoters are speculating on creating D.C.'s own large music festival to further improve the city's appeal to fans and artists.
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Tags: News , Venues