No concerts at Alpine Valley this year

Live Nation hopes to bring in acts for 2018


Alpine Valley Music Theatre near East Troy will not host any concerts in 2017.

Beverly Hills, Calif.-based Live Nation Worldwide Inc., which operates the amphitheater, was unable to book any shows this year, according to Jon Reens, vice president of marketing for Midwest music for Live Nation.

Many of the artists that typically play at Alpine Valley are playing other venues this year, or are not touring, Reens said.

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Jimmy Buffett shutterstock_583121902
Jimmy Buffett

Jimmy Buffet, who has played at Alpine Valley nearly every year since 1995, instead will perform at Wrigley Field in Chicago this year. Zac Brown Band and Dead & Company, which both played at Alpine Valley last year, are also both playing at Wrigley Field this year. Another Alpine Valley regular, Dave Matthews, is playing with Tim Reynolds at Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island in Chicago this year. The Dave Matthews Band is not touring this year.

Live Nation tried to attract new artists to Alpine Valley this year, but was unable to complete any deals, Reens said.

“We reached out to a number of artists that had never played (at Alpine Valley),” he said. “It was met with universal excitement. Then you get into the business side, and it wasn’t able to work.”

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Live Nation is already in conversations with artists about playing at Alpine Valley in 2018, Reens said.

Alpine Valley – WISN TV Channel 12 photo.

Reens said he is “absolutely” confident that Alpine Valley, which opened in 1977, could be revitalized. Some maintenance work will be done at Alpine Valley this year, including roof repairs to its expo building, he said.

In addition to being home of the Chicago Cubs, Wrigley Field has become a popular concert venue in recent years and is now a major competitor for shows in the area. The historic ballpark and its neighborhood provide a “different kind of magic,” for concerts, Reens said.

But, he added, “Alpine Valley has its own magic. It’s a phenomenal property and a great amphitheater.”

Alpine Valley has a seating capacity of 37,000 and sits on a 198-acre site. The property was put up for sale by its owner, Milwaukee-based Zilber Ltd., in 2014. A representative for Zilber could not be reached for comment. Live Nation leases the venue from Zilber.

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