Executive vice president
Darren Pfeffer brings not just magnificent ears to the table as he oversees MSG Live’s events and sets the strategic direction for bookings. He brings with him the kind of toolbox one only develops after spending more than two decades spotting and developing new talent with a company like iHeartMedia.
He’s got a portfolio of high-profile buildings to program — including the most famous arena of all, Madison Square Garden, as well as Radio City Music Hall, Beacon Theatre, Chicago Theatre and the Forum in Inglewood, Calif. — but he strives to bring new artists and ideas to the fore in innovative ways to provide the best experience in the right locations for artists and fans alike.
Sometimes those creative bookings result in pleasant surprises (though Pfeffer may not be surprised). Comedian Sebastian Maniscalco sold out four shows in two days Jan. 19-20, moving 72,960 tickets for a total gross of $8,282,629. “It was history made at Madison Square Garden,” Pfeffer told Pollstar.
Jerry Seinfeld could probably do at least as well at the arena; however, he is personally attached to the Beacon Theatre and prefers regular residencies there, Pfeffer said.
Seinfeld’s more recent run reported to Pollstar, June 6-7, spanned four shows and sold 11,040 tickets, grossing $1,393,412. Could he play the big arena? No doubt. But the more intimate Beacon is where Seinfeld’s most comfortable. Together, they’ve created a nice franchise, with four-show residencies taking place monthly in 2019.
Another milestone for Pfeffer in 2019 is booking Barbra Streisand Aug. 3 for her first show in Madison Square Garden in 13 years. And of course there’s the continuing Billy Joel residency, which was in full swing when Pfeffer arrived at MSG Live in April 2017 and continues delighting audiences.