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News November 19, 2017

Ed Sheeran equals AC/DC’s stadium record as dates double

The original seven Ed Sheeran stadium dates in March for Australia and New Zealand have already exploded to 14, based on predictably promising pre-sales.

Third shows were added in Melbourne and Auckland, and second shows in Sydney, Brisbane and Dunedin.

These go on sale with the original 430,000 tickets at staggered times on Tuesday May 23.

According to Frontier, “This announcement sees Sheeran becoming the joint title-holder of the most stadium shows on a single Australian and New Zealand tour, sharing the record with AC/DC’s 2010 tour.”

The AC/DC Black Ice Tour went on to shift 750,000 tickets. It also sets Sheeran apart from Adele’s juggernaut tour this year, which did eight stadium shows and sold over 600,000 tickets.

Sheeran has sold out every show on his past four tours. His last run, in 2015, played to 190,000 fans.

Having built up his Australian and New Zealand following with consistent returns, he’s graduated from theatres to stadiums.

His Perth show, which kicks off the Australian/ New Zealand 2018 run on March 3, marks the first concert at the 60,000-seat Perth Stadium, which will open around then for the 2018 AFL season.

In Dunedin, where Sheeran is playing for the first time, most of the city’s available accommodation sold out four minutes after the tour was announced. All cheap flights into the city are booked. Air New Zealand has promised to put on more flights around the concerts.

Terry Davies, Chief Executive of Dunedin Venues, which runs Forsyth Barr Stadium, expects the first Sheeran show to draw 40,000 – easily breaking the venue’s attendance record of 35,000, set in 2015 by Fleetwood Mac.

From one show alone, Enterprise Dunedin estimated it would inject between NZ$7 million to $10 million into the city’s economy.

This week there was wild speculation that the English singer-songwriter would add a third NZ city, Christchurch, where he played in 2015.

But Frontier said Sheeran’s full schedule could not add any more dates. In any case, the most suitable venue, the 30,000-capacity AMI Stadium has a policy of only one non-sporting event a year… and Bruce Springsteen played there already this year.

Faced with yet another example of Australian and New Zealand embracing his music, Sheeran sent a message, “I’m overwhelmed with the response, to match that record is very humbling. I really can’t wait to get down there.”

Frontier chief Michael Gudinski commented: “Ed smashed ABBA’s long-standing record in Australia for the most weeks at number one, with Shape Of You and now he’s matched the biggest record in touring.

“He just continues to amaze me as a singer, as a songwriter, as a performer and as a good mate.”

Scalpers are already demanding $1500 for tickets, despite efforts to keep prices down to $165.

The full schedule:

Saturday March 3 – Perth Stadium, Perth

Wednesday March 7 – Adelaide Oval

Saturday March 10 – Etihad Stadium, Melbourne

Sunday March 11 – Etihad Stadium, Melbourne

Monday March 12 – Etihad Stadium, Melbourne

Friday March 16 – ANZ Stadium, Sydney

Saturday March 17 – ANZ Stadium, Sydney

Tuesday March 20 – Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Wednesday March 21 – Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Saturday March 24 – Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland

Sunday March 25 – Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland

Sunday March 26 – Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland

Thursday March 29 – Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin

Saturday March 31 – Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin


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