Friday, December 14, 2007

Your Achy Breaky Wallet

Posted By on Fri, Dec 14, 2007 at 11:37 PM

At the very moment that I write this, plans for the distribution of tickets to 2007’s top grossing concert tour — scheduled to visit New Orleans Saturday, Jan. 26 — are being unleashed by the New Orleans Arena on a surely rabid public. Care to guess the artist?

Did someone say Van Halen? Nope, sorry. Eddie, David and Co. won’t hit NOLA until Feb. 8, and without even sniffing the summit of the earnings pile. (Somewhere a single tear falls into a shot of Cabo Wabo Tequila.) Could it be the hip-hop five-top led by Bow Wow, Chris Brown, Lil’ Mama, Sean Kingston and Soulja Boy? Warming (Jan. 12), but wrong again.

The singer you’re searching for has the surname of Cyrus, but it ain’t Billy Ray. Miley Cyrus, 15, is the golden egg in question. Still nothing? Cyrus is better known as her alter-ego, Hannah Montana, Disney Channel sensation and bane of American parents’ existence. Readers ages 12-under, all together now: “Omigod!” And those 42-over: “Oh my god.”

That hand-wringing by the parents of preteens is due to the system the arena has concocted to divvy up the highly-sought-after tickets. As reported by the Times-Picayune, the New Orleans Arena — the second largest concert venue in town — has the physical space to accommodate around 14,000 kids, but area fans waiting in general-admission lines (digital or otherwise) will be jockeying for pieces of a much smaller pie. Subtract 5,500 seats for Montana Club members; 2,000 for Arena Club members; 1,000 for Cyrus, her record company and other promoters and sponsors; and what does that leave? Less than 6,000 measly spots for local, loyal Montanans — roughly 40 percent of arena capacity.

On top of that, the distribution system, which launches, er, right now, calls for wristbands, a lottery and other convoluted measures of ensuring you have a disconsolate 10-year-old on your hands tomorrow evening. Ticket prices range from $28.75-$73.25, but short of Powerball-like luck, don’t hold out hope for a ticket in that range, not unless you remove the decimal, that is. (Scalpers in other cities have commanded — and gotten — up to $5,000.)

Parents, go here for your 1/5,500 gamble, and then here to vent.

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