Promoters Ruck Over Santana

It’s not clear if a Balkan promoters’ ring headed by Marcel Avram ever formally got off the ground, but some who would have been involved are already falling out with each other.

Both Avram, who now splits his time between his German, Swiss and Turkish offices, and Austrian promoter Richard Hoermann are believed to be having a ruck with Serbia-based promoter Maxa Catovic over a Santana show in Belgrade.

Hoermann declined to discuss details of the Santana show row but says he and Avram both have an issue with Catovic dating back to a May 26 AC/DC show at the 40,000-capacity Belgrade Partizan Stadium. Hoermann said Avram approached him at the end of 2007 to join a group of promoters that have included Catovic, Mimis Helmis (Greece), Stefan Morosanu (Romania), David Lieberberg and Petar Petrov (Bulgaria).

Hoermann said he wouldn’t comment until he had chance to further discuss the matter with Avram at their upcoming meeting in Munich.

The AC/DC show was originally scheduled for the 75,000-capacity Stadion Crvena Zvezda, the home of Red Star Belgrade soccer team, but still sold only about 35,000 tickets after being moved to the smaller venue.

Avram and Hoermann appear to have tried to cut Catovic’s Novi Sad-based Komuna out of the July 11 Santana show at Kalemegdan Fortress, although Sky Music – which had been brought in to replace Catovic’s company – both advertised and sold tickets for the show.

That much was reported by Serbia newspaper Blic, which also said Sky was warning fans that only tickets with the Sky Music logo would be allowed into the show.

It advised fans who already bought tickets without the Sky logo to return and exchange them for valid tickets.

Blic also speculated that the issue between the promoters was over money, and claimed the Serbian national bank had frozen Catovic’s company’s accounts because it owes the government for VAT and taxes.

Neither Avram, Hoermann nor Catovic have responded to a request for further clarification.