Back at 30,000 feet in the pointy end of a Dreamliner 787 – full reclining bed and Mahler’s 2nd symphony in my headphones. The travails of Red Bank seem a world away, and I am sorely tempted not to revisit them – except that fans, including those sending me emails, need answers. At its heart a simple tale: when we arrived at the venue and were handed the tickets we had reserved for our special attendees (50 tickets, centre section, rows 1-5), those were not the seats we were given. It was a fairly random selection somewhere in the first seven or eight rows. This was all the more frustrating as we had pointed out the same error over three weeks ago, and the promoter had promised to resolve it.
Come the day of the concert and not a finger had apparently been lifted.
The promoter’s assistant was seeking to absolve himself of all blame, while we were very clear that we could not accept the wrong seats as our personal integrity was on the line : a perfect example of seeking to “operate in the marketplace, while being free of the values of the marketplace” (the very speech that I gave a bit later).
The promoter’s assistant continued to block matters by unhelpfully and slightly absurdly claiming that they had “sold all the tickets in the first five minutes before we knew about the reservation” – despite emails from our agent showing that they had known months before.
And then magically, he started to phone up some of the purchasers of the front seats (I don’t know why he would have had their numbers), and correct seats became available.
I would not have made any of this public, except that I have subsequently learnt from one person who was moved that they were told that they were being forced to swap seats “as they wanted to give them to their own special people” – unacceptably and wrongly blaming the situation on the us. I also suspect those tickets were bought “at a premium” and that our tickets had effectively been scalped.
This business of music could be so much easier…