Walk this way – Aerosmith to play stadium

Steven Tyler
Steven Tyler
A record crowd of up to 40,000 fans could pack Forsyth Barr Stadium when Aerosmith headlines a major rock event in Dunedin.

The best-selling United States rock band - with more than 150 million albums sold worldwide - will perform its only New Zealand show at Dunedin's roofed stadium on April 24, it has been confirmed.

The Grammy Award-winning band, headed by frontman and American Idol judge Steven Tyler, boasts hits including Walk This Way, Love in an Elevator and I Don't Want to Miss a Thing.

Joining them at the stadium will be Australian hard rock act Wolfmother alongside the Dead Daisies - featuring New Zealand-born former INXS frontman Jon Stevens - Wellington-based Head Like a Hole and Diva Demolition.

Tyler, calling from his home in Maui, Hawaii, told the Otago Daily Times his interest in performing in New Zealand- and, in particular, the South - was piqued by descriptions provided by his eldest daughter, Liv, one of the stars of the Lord of the Rings film trilogy.

"Liv did a couple of great movies down there. She said New Zealand was gorgeous and green and was a place you have to visit.''

"The promoters mentioned going to Australia [the band will perform three shows there] and I thought that since we're going to be in that neck of the woods we might as well spread it out a bit.''

Details of the deal were announced by promoter McManus Entertainment and labelled a ''major coup'' by Dunedin Venues Management Ltd chief executive Darren Burden.

He said the show would be as big as it gets for the stadium.

"This is right up there ... it's good for the stadium and absolutely fantastic for the city,'' he said.

The size of the show meant there would be standing room only on the stadium's playing surface, lifting the venue's capacity to 40,000 fans, he said.

The event was expected to begin in the afternoon and continue late into the evening.

Tickets would go on sale on March 4, although prices and other details were yet to be confirmed.

However, with expectations fans would travel from around New Zealand and even from Australia, Mr Burden said he was hoping for a sellout.

Aerosmith formed in 1970 and would appeal to a wide age range, including Dunedin students, fans from elsewhere in New Zealand and even some ''die-hard'' supporters from Australia, he said.

''I think you will find there will be an awful lot of people that travel from all around New Zealand to come to this,'' Mr Burden said.

McManus Entertainment New Zealand general manager Jackie Sanders hoped the mix of support acts would also ''tip the balance and take this to a gig where it's going to be a 40,000 crowd''.

The announcement caps a stellar start to the year for the company running the stadium, which has so far secured headline events including Nitro Circus, Ride the Rhythm, Winery Tour, the Warriors, All Whites and Phoenix, and Grammy award-winning artist Paul Simon.

Ms Sanders said Aerosmith had time for only one show in New Zealand before continuing its Global Warming tour in Australia, and Vector Arena in Auckland was considered too small for the ''pretty huge'' show.

Promoters had assessed outdoor stadiums across the country before settling on Dunedin's roofed venue, because of the weather guarantees it offered, she said.

Equipment would be flown into North Island centres or Christchurch and then trucked or shipped by sea to Dunedin, she said.

''We are pretty confident we have made the right decision in coming to Dunedin and it's going to work for everybody,'' she said.

Mr Burden would not discuss details of the ''confidential'' deal between the parties, or say if DVML was guaranteed to make a profit.

Tourism Dunedin chief executive Hamish Saxton said news of Aerosmith's show would also be welcomed.

''I am certain the visitor economy will be delighted by another event of this magnitude hitting town ...there will be many businesses looking forward to this event.''


International acts

I never cease to be amazed at the clear lack of knowledge many have regarding international acts in Dunedin. While the Dunedin Town Hall certainly couldn't compete with other centres in terms of numbers for concerts many international acts did play there until the on again-off again-on again redevelopment debacle saw a decline in interest in bringing acts to Dunedin. Sadly the Regent Theatre is not always suitable due to its limited number of seats.

Carisbrook did see some international acts but as we are all aware the perceived inability of the ORFU to see past rugby, rugby, rugby meant we did not see better utilisation of Carisbrook.

And some of the supposedly never-before-seen events have taken place elsewhere within the city.

And the Hollies was a joke - 6000 people and only one Hollie. This was in effect a tribute band.

I have and will continue to pay to attend concerts elsewhere. Why? Because I prefer to be in a venue where the sound is not hugely problematic unlike the stadium. I also prefer to attend concerts at venues that are professionally managed on the da; something I have not experienced at the stadium to date.



Should watch some TV

@Max Power: At least twice in the last couple of weeks, the TV weather stated that Dunedin recorded the lowest temperature in the country, and if you do your homework, you will also find that on average Invercargill records temperatures 1-2 degrees higher than us.

I used to love Dunedin. That's why i returned here from Australia in 1990. Unfortunately, over the last ten years the place has been ruined by dumb ideas from successive councils which will ensure our children, if they choose to stay here, will be faced with excessivly high rate bills for life. Perhaps you should get off your high horse and have a walk around town and south d and observe all the empty shops. You should also speak to a few business owners and see just how much longer they can stay afloat. I have managed a local business for the past 8 years and i know things are not good.

Maybe hospitality is doing well, but once they are asked to contribute to the fund, they will be struggling like most others. My sister has already left Dunedin, for London, and I'm here looking after my elderly mother so I'm stuck here until my job is done. My son's keen on Aussie so that's where we will eventually be heading

Sweeping generalisations

"Max-Power' makes some sweeping assertions about Invercargill's weather. Pronouncing it to be worse than Dunedin's is a generalisation which is unsupportable for much of the time.

Invercargill, and Southland generally, suffers when the weather is from the south, as it is for much of the year. However, Invercargill is well protected from pleurisy-inducing easterlies, such as those which blow up our harbour for much of the time. Have a look at the weather map on any such day in Dunedin, and I'll just about guarantee that Invercargill has been several degrees warmer. And how do I know this? Well, over the years I have had ex-Southland neighbours live on every one of our boundaries but one, and that fact was siezed upon over and over again as some sort of moral superiority or 'proof' of something, although I could never work out what.

I had one question I asked in the latter stages of these exchanges: 'If the weather is so great in Invercargill, and it is as great a place to live as you contend, why did you not choose retire there, instead of coming to Dunedin? Very seldom was a reply forthcoming which was not downright 'bolshie'.

Why stay here?

Speedfreak43: Sounds like you really don't like Dunedin. I'm not sure where you see all of these business closing up - I'm not seeing them. Business is thriving with all of the new events, the cruise ships, and students arriving in town. 

I also take issue with your statement that everywhere has better weather than Dunedin. Dunedin has better weather than a lot of places, including anywhere in Southland, Christhurch, and Wellington is too windy... If you hate the place so much, then why stay here?

There's no pleasing some people

I expressed delight that Dunedin Calling and family were coming back to Dunedin to live, so delighted were they with the vitality they have heard about since the stadium was opened.  Now he says they haven't returned yet because of naysayers like me.  Could it be that he's looking for a reason to explain why excitement over concerts and sports is not quite enough to sustain a family, unless they have considerable private means to live on?  Did he perhaps remember that there used to be concerts and sports as far back as he can remember - because there certainly were as far back as I can remember and I am sure I am older than he.

The real reasons

@Dunedin Calling:  Is becuse the city is in debt up to its eyeballs with no money to spend on urgent infrastructure, Just about every other place in the country has a  warmer climate and there are few job prospects with businesses shutting up shop left right and centre. Cadburys will be next, mark my words.

The main reason we haven't returned yet..

..is because of naysayers such as yourself. Perhaps try looking on the bright side for once?

Pit, as in 'cess...'

'Branestawm', you mention Dunedin becoming a cesspit, without the stadium, which suggests that you are one of the 'Our Glorious Stadium' lot.

Dunedin will become a cesspit if the city's creaking underground infrastructure fails, and all the money which might have been available to help get work on it under way has long-since disappeared down the fiscal-vortex (with no accountability as to how it has been spent). It is all buried in a loss-making stadium which, believe it or not, will likely even then still be crying out for more. Do we never learn?

Making a profit 2?

Max: You are correct - the museum would struggle to make a profit, but by charging it can claw back some of the losses. Things like the museums were built long ago and I would make things like them user pays now as we as a city are very short of money.

This stadium was an unnecessary build at a time when the world economy was bad, and even their own reports advised them not to build it as it would struggle. Bums on seats are not paying the bills, and if they don't charge what it's worth to open every time (and a little more) it will keep failing. The city is so short of money it can't even afford a decent events fund and it's high time the Chamber stood up - they claim to make $15m  from these events, so one would think they would be bringing in more events themselves.


There are only two real options at the moment - we have to accept and enforce user pays as we can't afford not to, and /or if they keep underperforming it might be time to sell some of the business and let the private sector run it.


Don't sweat it

I wouldn't sweat it too much branestawm. I don't think the thousands upon thousands of patrons attending all these fantastic events pay much attention to what half a dozen anti, anonymous bloggers think. 

Don't 'consider' - do it now

Congratulating DVML, Dunedin Calling writes, "I am seriously considering bringing my young family back to Dunedin as a direct result of the new positive vibe that is coming out of the city these days." 

That's great news.  One factor, as reported in the news, and a whole family is attracted to Dunedin!  A family which has already ascertained its job prospects, the cost of living and all the other factors, or for whom these pale into insignificance compared with some concerts and sports events. what does it matter why they decided?  I'm sure they'll arrive soon.

Museum makes a profit?

If the museum makes a profit where does it get it's income?

The city library was built in the late 70's and would have cost millions. In today's dollars it would have cost up to $100 million. Add in all of the other libraries and their cost and you wouldn't be too far off the cost of the stadium. Add in the annual runing cost and I'm sure it won't be too far off the cost of the stadium.

I'm not saying the library shouldn't be funded, I'm asking whether is it more important that anything else. For some people it is. For some it isn't. For some the stadium is the only council facility they use. So why should we only spend money on arts and culture?

Raise rates

branestawm(sic): you say that retail, accommodation and bars are all better off because of the stadium why don't we simply raise rates on those businesses to cover all the stadium losses, if as you say, the stadium is such a big financial success for the city then they will still be far better off after paying for it.

Stadium, library & museum

You cannot lump the library and museum in with the stadium. The stadium cost at least 220 mil to build and that does not include interest over 40 years.

The library and museum did not cost that huge amount to build, and I think the museum runs a profit.

One thing for certain there will never be another huge vanity project like the stadium, as we are now broke.

Well done DVML!

As an ex-Dunedinite, I was excited to see the stadium construction begin before I left the city.

Now I'm overseas, I am seeing and reading all about these amazing events that are coming to the city as a direct result of the stadium.

Well done DVML, you are clearly doing an excellent job, and I am seriously considering bringing my young family back to Dunedin as a direct result of the new positive vibe that is coming out of the city these days.

Keep up the great work!

Stadium facts

This stadium will never pay its way run by the city council. We need the majority stadum support in the community to see this step forward and make the stadium pay by contributing what it takes to put stadium accounts into the green.

Trouble is up till now there just doesn't seem to be any sign of such support? 

Maybe the city could sell the stadium to the business interests that told us all it would pay, be a success, a city asset, could be managed at a profit.

Wouldn't it be something to see the stadium make a profit under such management. Little or no objection to the project must then follow.

As it is a future of loss and increasing expence year on year with ratepayers fitting the bills is a fact to which most it appears seem to object.


I can't believe the knockers

I can't believe the knockers here in Dunedin, yes we have a new stadium, yes it costs us on our rates, and no it may not make any profit, or at least not for a long time. But the benefits of what else it can do for Dunedin are enormous. 

Retail spending, accommodation, bars - all benefit from the acts and shows that have been held here and will be held here.

What have we had at Carisbrook? Rugby and the Nitro Circus? What have we had at FB? Rugby, Soccer, Nitro Circus, League, Rodeo, Elton John, A horse show, Hollies, and soon - Paul Simon and Aerosmith.

Do the knockers want to live in a city that bustles with activity from the extra visitors or do they want to see it turn into the probverbial cesspit.  

I for one believe we have a fantastic city that has a lot to offer in everything from great museums, art galleries etc to spectacular beaches and other scenery. 

Yes Dunedin is small, but like they say - good things come in small packages.  And we have now shown NZ and Australasia as a whole that we can have top acts here. 

Lets progress not regress. 

Bring on Aerosmith and hopefully many more big names. I for one will be there.  

A correction

Max you're right I meant to say it was Mr Burden who should always know whether the company he runs is making a profit on each and every deal he does. And even if he can't tell us the details of how much his company is making or losing he can simply tell us whether or not he is making a loss without giving away any real contractual secrets. Unless of course this simple fact is so embarassing that it itself is a secret.

Another thought

Qsrc: A grand is too much if you book ahead  - for the same cost as the stadium the DCC could have given every one of the 50,000  ratepayers $500 each for a flight to see the concert of their choice every year for 20 years.

Or they could have just not taken the money from us in the first place and let each of us choose how to spend it on our own.

Of course, the fiction of us just paying $66 for the stadium is long gone - you're paying at least twice that on average, plus your rates rebate has dropped and will drop further as we're not investing enough in our income earning companies. The city isn't spending as much on maintenance and services, and isn't saving a cent towards the $500m it needs for our ailing sewerage system

Walk this way

If I walked that way, I'd give up wearing leather trousers.

Facts wrong?

Max: As I read the Burden quote the first bit is the confidential part with the promoter and that's not a problem, but the second part is not at all confidential as it's to do with whether DVML is making money and this is something we should know.
I believe regarding the Paul Simon concert Mr Burden said something similar, but for the first time he said we would not make a loss on it.
There is nothing confidential about knowing if we are to make a loss and no promoter would be concerned about it either.

"The stadium is as much a business as the Art Gallery, Library and Museums" - I totally agree with you, and they also should have to pay their own way. [Abridged]

Watch out

Max: You've just lined yourself up to get Mike's story that Hoyts competes for patrons with the stadium and it's not fair as only one is subsidised by the ratepayers.

Then he will tell you it's different for the ratepayer-funded library as they don't compete with other private libraries.  He is very careful to say compete with other libraries and not say other businesses. I'm pretty sure he realises that the library competes every day and that every day it takes business from every bookshop and secondhand shop selling books in town.  People don't have to buy a book from a non-subsidised bookstore to read it - they just wander down to the ratepayer-funded library and help themselves. 

I suspect their bindery sevice and venue hire are also subsidised by the ratepayers, even though they are competing with other businesses. As usual the antis seem to lack any consistency.

Nice list Max

Shame there is nothing of interest on it from my perspective and im sure, that of many others. Perhaps that - and the fact they wouldn't run at a profit - is the reason they have not came here before. I remember countless events cancelling before arrival due to poor pre-sales.

Well done DVML

Day 1 of this news and I've heard from friends all over NZ that are planning to come. They may doss with mates or stump up for accommodation (if they can find any!), but I guarantee they will spend several hundred dollars each in Dunedin over the couple or three days they're here.

Well done DVML.

Getting the facts wrong

Mike: Where does it say "Mr Orders" doesn't know if it will make a profit? It says that due to comercial sensitivity that "Mr Burden" will not state anything about the financial arrangements.

Speedfreak43: You say these could all be hosted here without the stadium... They never were, ever, and never would be, ever.

Without the stadium we would not be getting these large concerts and sporting events. The Warriors had never come, the Phoenix had never come, Elton John had never come, Paul Simon had never come, Aerosmith had never come, no headlining act ever filled Carisbrook... It just did not and would not happen without the magnificent stadium that we are lucky to call ours. 


Stadium equivalent to gallery, library and museum

The stadium is as much a business as the Art Gallery, Library and Museums. They have had hundreds of millions of dollars off the ratepayer and have never made a profit and never will. 

The stadium is a place to go to appreciate top level of sport and music, just as the art gallery is a place to appreciate art, the museum a place to appreciate history and the library a place to appreciate books. Some commentators on this site think that because certain things are precious to them then it is worthwhile funding - where was the opposition to the Toitu redevelopment? $40 million that won't return a cent to the city.

All of these facilities are built by the ratepayers so that we can enjoy life. No one else is going to build these public facilities so we must. What a boring place Dunedin would be with no sport, art, culture or books. 

Don't forget the rugby

Pablo: I think it would be great if all these events (without subsidies like rates rebates or events funds, or the several loans that the DCC or DVL have made to DVML) were making a profit and there were lots more of them. Wouldn't it be great?  The stadium would be a great little money spinner, an asset to the city.

The problem though with having more events is that if they lose money, the more you have the more money you lose. That's why spoon's list means nothing without some indication of how much each event makes or loses. But as the PWC report, the one the DCC commissioned to investigate stadium funding, pointed out, it's primarily a rugby stadium. Most of the big events there will be rugby, and as a result its finances live or die on whether or not rugby is profitable for DVML. So long as they lose money on most rugby games they will continue to lose money. Focusing on concerts and ignoring this more basic issue is fiddling while Rome burns.

Here is a thought

If there was no stadium and you wanted to attend Elton John, Paul Simon, Aerosmith etc how much would it cost to fly to Auckland and book a hotel? About a grand. Thats a heck of a lot more than the extra $62.50 a year were being "lumped" with now.

Well done DVML. Sounds like a fantastic rock festival - I'll be there! I think the haters need to dream on, dream until their dreams come true!

I wonder how many of the anti club are even home owners and ratepayers. I sign my rates cheques with a smiley face! Long live the Stadium, The Higlanders and anyone else who drops by.

Funny indeed

It's also funny how those that advocate socialism at a local level only advocate socialism when it's something they agree with.

My rates have significantly more going to museums, the art gallery, parks and the Gardens, libraries and swimming pools than the stadium - roughly five times as much.

There's also plenty who discount any indirect benefit (e.g. 5000+ visitors staying in local hotels and eating at local restaurants). But then a chunk of your rates goes to tourism, and a chunk to the Visitor Centre.

Funny indeed.

Haters proved wrong?

Love it or hate it, the stadium will continue to lose money far into the future.

Do you actually understand that out of the $200,000 paid to Council for the hire of the stadium all expenses such as security, staff etc will have to come out of the pot? Are you aware the rated value of the stadium is $1.8 million but it only pays $136,000 pa? Nice if all local business could get a 90% reduction in its rates.

Eden Park, Mount Smart, North Harbour Stadium all lose money. Jade was $46 million in the red prior to the quake. Sydney Olympic Stadium is $150 million in debt. 

Love the stadium all you like, but don't attempt to make out its some sort of money-spinning asset to the ratepayers of Dunedin.[Abridged]

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