Boss of P&J Live says more needs to be done to attract global names

P&J Live

MORE NEEDS to be done to attract global names to P&J Live, the managing director of the Aberdeen venue said yesterday.

The £300million facility – Scotland’s largest indoor concert arena – opened in 2019.

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Lewis Capaldi, Elton John and Rod Stewart are among big names to have played the 15,000-capacity arena.

However managing director Rob Wicks has admitted there is work to be done to bring more top acts to Aberdeen to attract concert goers.

P&J Live was the replacement for the Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre.

“I think we’ve got to get more innovative in the way in which we appeal to promoters,” Mr Wicks told the BBC.

“We’re on quite a big drive to bring as many people up to showcase the venue.

“But there’s work to be done to convince promoters you don’t only have to play in Glasgow – you can play elsewhere in Scotland and still be assured of a very sizeable and strong audience.

“What we’ve seen is a little bit of a stuttering start for the venue.”

The venue is operated by ASM Global, which also run the Wembley Arena in London.

Mr Wicks said: “If there’s a particular act that’s going to be at Wembley Arena, then there will most certainly be discussions being had with that promoter, the artist and their agents to encourage them to consider other venues in the group, like Aberdeen.”

He was speaking after figures released by industry body UK Music suggest music tourism contributed £6.6billion to the economy.

P&J live is working with tourism body VisitAberdeenshire to ensure the region can benefit from the live music sector.

Research from the venue suggests 55% of those who bought tickets for Elton John’s gigs in the city came from outside local AB postcodes.

VisitAberdeenshire estimated those concerts were worth more than £1million for the North-east economy.

“There’s definitely an opportunity to see this as much more of a key strand in the broader tourism offering,” Mr Wicks said.

“When you’ve got artists like Elton John, people are prepared to travel from some distance away.”

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