Tag: Oklahoma

Intimacy Issues: How Small Buildings Take on Big Shows

Columbia, S.C.’s 1,200-capacity The Senate is one of the small rooms that  hosted J. Cole’s “underplay” tour in 2017. (Courtesy The Senate)  The ‘Springsteen on Broadway’ trend continues as Madonna’s coming tour heads for the opera house  Jaws dropped when Madonna announced that her new tour would start in September at the 2,100-seat Howard Gilman Opera House at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and move into similarly small rooms for the remainder of the 48-show tour.  Madonna, who practically invented the crowd-pleasing, production-heavy tours we see today, has been selling out arenas and stadiums since the 1980s and holds the record for the best-selling tour by a female artist in live event history after she grossed $411 million from 84 shows with her 2008-09 Sweet & Sticky Tour, according to Pollstar. Madonna said she’s looking forward to performing in more intimate settings. She may have been inspired by the Las Vegas […]

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Generation Next: Michael Owens

Assistant General Manager, Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, SMG Michael Owens learned early on how to pamper touring acts, a skill that helps him stay on the competitive edge as the assistant general manager of Chesapeake Energy Arena. The Oklahoma City arena is in direct competition with the BOK Center in Tulsa, so taking care of artists and their management teams is a high priority for Owens in trying to lure them to his venue. “You’d be shocked at the amount of capital you can buy with some of these touring acts by taking a little extra effort to show them hospitality and take care of them,” Owens said. “You have to roll out the red carpet and take care of these people.” His strategy has worked, and he’s one of VenuesNow’s GenerationNext winners in part because he and his team helped the 18,200-capacity arena achieve record concert ticket sales in […]

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Generation Next: Meghan Blood

Director of Marketing, BOK Center, Tulsa, Okla., SMG When Meghan Blood was the interim director of marketing at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Okla., the arena was in the middle of managing seven shows with Garth Brooks.  She desperately wanted the permanent position as director of marketing, and she believes her leadership during that moment helped her land the job. “One of the things I love about BOK and (arena operator) SMG as a whole is they’re very good about promoting within. I had a good feeling I’d get the job, but I think it played a big part in me getting that promotion,” she said.  She’s been the director of marketing for almost five years now and continues to impress her peers, bosses and those who work with her industrywide.  “She’s probably one of the calmest senior leaders I have. She’s so calm in the middle of chaos. She never […]

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Sparks Moves Up to BOK Center GM

Casey Sparks helped open BOK Center in 2008 as marketing director. She replaces Jeff Nickler at Tulsa arena as well as Cox Business Center Casey Sparks will be taking over as general manager at Tulsa’s BOK Center and Cox Business Center, replacing longtime GM Jeff Nickler, who moved to OVG Facilities last year. Sparks opened the SMG-managed BOK Center in 2008 as marketing director, left for a position with Red Light Management in 2010, and returned to BOK Center in 2014 as assistant general manager. Sparks began her career at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, S.C., and also worked at San Antonio’s 18,500-seat AT&T Center and Pensacola Bay Center in Florida.  

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