Wacken Webcast A Virtual Success

The main problem with producing the live webcast of Wacken was getting the bands’ approval in time to market it effectively, according to those involved.

CTS Eventim new media vice president Malte Blumenthal, who also heads Tempodome.com, which produced the broadcast, told Pollstar he had barely a week to launch the project and is reasonably happy that 1,000 people paid to see all or some of Wacken 2008 on their computer screens.

Festival director Holger Hübner agreed that the process of getting the necessary approvals needs to be shortened, although he was more than happy that the July 31 to August 2 webcast attracted 65,000 visitors to Wacken’s Rockalarm.com portal.

All the visitors were able to sample a 15-minute live streaming and more than 5,000 left their details and joined the Rockalarm community, almost doubling the site’s membership.

Of the 1,000 who bought a virtual ticket from CTS, about half paid euro 14.90 for all three days. Of the 500 or so who bought day tickets, most went for the Saturday-night finale at euro 7.90. The rest of the virtual day tickets were equally divided between the Thursday and the Friday, which cost euro 4.90 and euro 6.90 respectively.

Blumenthal said he feels the short lead time meant it wasn’t possible to create the impact he believes the project deserves.

“It’s a revolution to sell virtual tickets, to move from a real concert to a virtual concert,” he said. “I’m really wondering why nobody is realising what a big step into the digital future CTS has just made.”

The acts featured in the groundbreaking Wacken transmission included Iron Maiden, As I Lay Dying, Children Of Bodom, Hatebreed, Opeth, Nightwish, Lordi and Avenged Sevenfold.