4 Aug 2011

Venue fails to secure two international acts

7:21 pm on 4 August 2011

The management of Dunedin's new stadium insists it is not turning away top music acts, despite a breakdown in negotiations over two international performers.

Discussions had been underway to bring rock stars Meat Loaf and Rod Stewart to the new $200 million centre, which officially opens on Friday.

The head of Australia's Frontier Touring Company, Michael Gudinski, has said stadium management firm Dunedin Venues did not want Meat Loaf because they had agreed that Elton John would be the first concert at the new facility.

Now, negotiations over Rod Stewart singing in the city next February have also faltered, with the Frontier Touring Company confirming they have given up.

But the chief executive of Dunedin Venues, David Davies, says he did not even know there was a problem.

"We had a date, it was date that they wanted and obviously we have the documentation to back up that there was genuine negotiations which they'd agreed and we'd agreed to.

"He was at the front of the queue and could get a contract whenever he wanted."

It has been suggested Frontier Touring wanted the stadium for free and Mr Davies says the stadium is not willing to do this.

Mr Davies says the stadium is doing everything it can to secure big acts and he hopes in time Mr Gudinski will have the courtesy to talk to him directly.