My opinion of the Krock has really taking a turn for the worse over the past couple weeks. Leading up to the grand opening, I maintained an optimistic outlook regarding Kingston’s newest mega-centre when the community called into question the location, building design, land purchase, transportation network, and parking scheme. I even told friends that we should re-elect Rosen in order to ensure the project didn’t get canceled, and ultimately end up costing the City more in the long run. That’s not to say I’m a big fan of our Mayor, but lately I couldn’t help but agree with his utter disgust over the serious mismanagement of the K-Rock Centre. What the hell is going on over there?
All the lights are on, but no one’s home. In the past few weeks, country singer Tracy Lawrence, comedian Colin Mochrie, and crooner Engelbert Humperdinck have all decided to cancel their respective performances at the K-Rock Centre. The fact that such performers typically passed up an opportunity to perform in Kingston served as the ultimate justification for building a new multi-million dollar entertainment facility. Even so, the old cinematic ditty, “if you build it they will come,” does not seem to apply to the Krock’s first month of operation. Although little has been said regarding why Lawrence, Mochrie and the Hump are no longer coming to Kingston, you can rest assured it’s not because they did not approve of our shinny new building. As I’ve previously suggested, the problem lies with ticket sales, or rather a lack thereof.
The Tragically Hip’s opening night performance sold out less than 20 minutes after tickets were made available to the general public. Similarly, tickets for the upcoming Avril Lavigne show sold faster than generators after the ice storm. Although both shows are examples of performers giving back to their hometown, why can’t we get more of these desired performers into the K-Rock Centre? A quick look at Ticket Master listings for Toronto and Ottawa prove that there are popular acts touring, including: The Roots, Foo Fighters, Santana, and Def Leppard with Styx. I understand that tours are planned months in advance, but if Avril and the Hip can be persuaded to stop over in Kingston, surely these other acts can. Can’t Gord call up some of his rock buddies and put in a good word for us?
The problem rests with those responsible for booking gigs at the Krock. The Centre’s short history has proven that no one cares if (mis)management gets entertainers such as Anne Murray or Engelbert Humperdinck to stop over in the Limestone City, simply because they aren’t that…entertaining. Those in charge need to stop wasting their time with lame acts, and start concentrating their efforts on shows that are guaranteed to get us excited. Sex, drugs and rock and roll will sell tickets, and it’s safe to say that none of the canceled acts are calling out to rebellious teens to spent their parents hard earned money at an alcohol-fueled rock orgy. The Krock Staff had better get their act together fast, or else we run the risk of depriving all the six-year old’s their birthday money. How pathetic! Maybe we should convert it into a casino, or better yet, beg Avril to stay over and do a second show.
What band would you pay to see at the K-Rock Centre?