So last week we held our annual press conference to announce the 2005-06 season. As always, it was a mad dash to the finish line, trying to confirm everything in time, but we made it by the skin of our teeth (will it ever change? methinks not.)
This year in particular was difficult, what with the opening of the expansion in April and a media schedule that seems to demand a shorter timeline each year. In particular, the music line-up was complicated, because many of the bands we were interested in come from (for lack of a better term at this moment, give me a day and I’ll come up with something pithily annoying. or not) the “semi-popular” music world, aka rock booking. It’s a little different than the standard performing arts booking (that is to say dance, theater, and performance works) because the tours tend to be longer and put together on much shorter notice. Most times we have a full season in place up to a year in advance, but in the world of “semi-pop“, a lot of bands don’t have a clue what they’ll be doing three months out, let alone a year. But the headaches, cajoling, and (dare I say it) haranguing – are worth it, because there’s a quite nice range of artists that are doing interesting work, many of whom have never played in the area. Worth the price of admission.
And what is that price, you may ask? I answer: $15 ($12 Walker members). I know, I know, it’s not exactly two bucks in a passed hat, but put in context, it’s not TOTALLY unreasonable. Maybe it sounds disingenous coming from the disembodied keypad of the beast that is Walker, but we thought long and hard (screamed and kicked stuff too) about how to make this accessible for a wide audience without completely bottoming out. I won’t go into the economics of it all, but suffice it to say, no one’s in this for the dough, that’s for sure.