Billboard: Red Rocks Amphitheatre Is World’s Most-Attended Venue in 2021, Season still underway with holiday drive-in series
Dec 3 2021
There’s a new #1 at the top of Billboard Magazine’s year-end chart of top-grossing and best-attended venues: Red Rocks Amphitheatre.
Billboard’s Boxscore has named Red Rocks Amphitheatre as the top-grossing, most attended concert venue of any size, anywhere in the world for 2021 – the venue’s 80th anniversary. Red Rocks has broken its own season record by hosting 233 ticketed paid events, including 177 concerts, 20 yoga/fitness programs and 36 movies in the Film on the Rocks series.
The previous record for shows-per-season was 2019’s 168 concerts. A handful of shows took place for audiences of 175 people in 2020 and the 2021 season began under the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic with reduced capacities, seating charts promoting social distance, on-site Covid vaccination stations and uncertain fans and tours.
Because of reporting date cutoffs and promoter policy, Billboard is reporting gross ticket revenue of more than $60 million on 134 concerts. Gross reported ticket sales are received by the show promoter – not the venue – and do not account for show expenses such as venue rental, labor, payments to artists or other costs. Eventual revenues to Red Rocks are used to maintain and enhance the venues in the Arts & Venues portfolio, and provide City support for arts and cultural programs.
“It’s been an absolute whirlwind, and extremely gratifying, getting from a year that devastated so many in our industry to our own record-breaking season,” said Ginger White, executive director of Denver Arts & Venues, the City agency that operates Red Rocks. “We’re proud to play a part in Denver’s economic and cultural recovery by providing so many Colorado residents and visitors a place to gather for the joyous return of live music.”
“A Red Rocks season like this is a tribute to dedicated artists, promoters, staff and fans,” said Venue Director Tad Bowman. “Red Rocks is a special place, and every person who steps on stage, serves a drink, greets a customer, or buys a ticket owns a piece of this success.”
The Red Rocks concert season started with Lotus on a snowy April 22 and ended with Playboi Carti on November 19. Highlights of the season include:
• The 8 O’clock Howl – an 80th anniversary celebration featuring local musicians who had provided music for Colorado communities during the Covid-19 pandemic
• A six-night stand with electronic music artist/producer Zhu – the most nights by one artist ever in a Red Rocks season
• The return of the Grateful Dead’s members, in a variety of musical configurations, including, according to Billboard, the season’s highest grossing Red Rocks shows – two nights of Dead & Co, grossing more than $2 million
• First time headlining appearances from a number of performers, including Dermot Kennedy, Playboi Carti and Bill Burr
• Record-extending dates from Widespread Panic, playing the band’s 61st, 62nd and 63rd sold-out shows at Red Rocks
The Red Rocks season continues for the next two weekends with special holiday drive-in screenings all weekend. For tickets and additional information, visit www.redrocksonline.com.