Royal Albert Hall To Promote Own Christmas Dates
Royal Albert Hall – Royal Albert Hall
“The Hall will be promoting its own Christmas events from 2018,” classical music news source Slipped Disc reported, claiming that the pre-Christmas dates amounted to “more than half” of Raymond Gubbay Ltd.’s annual dates at the venue.
A source close to a performer in Raymond Gubbay Ltd.’s Christmas program told Pollstar that “the Hall are said to be concerned at the intransigent attitude of RGL and DEAG with repetitive programming and lack of investment.”
Royal Albert Hall program director Lucy Noble told Pollstar last summer that her team was increasingly “taking control of our brand and program.” A film festival, film screenings with live orchestras, silent disco, skate contests, graffiti exhibitions, poetry slams, the odd boxing match and, from 2018, the Christmas program were all part of “making our own product.”
In a further statement, the Royal Albert Hall said “over the last 146 years, the variety of events at the Royal Albert Hall has grown enormously, with Prince Albert’s vision of taking ‘arts and science’ to as wide an audience as possible at its heart. In recent times, this has led to a greater number of events being successfully promoted by the Hall itself.
“We recently advised the senior team at Raymond Gubbay Limited that, after much reflection, we have decided to take a more active role in the programming of the dates leading up to Christmas and therefore, regrettably, we are unable to offer them dates for 2018.
“The Hall has had a long standing and happy relationship with Raymond Gubbay Ltd, with whom we have partnered on many occasions to present events for audiences to enjoy. We are pleased to say that we have several RGL events currently on-sale and we look forward to working with the Raymond Gubbay team in the future.” Raymond Gubbay sold his company to DEAG in 2008, and left in 2016 to pursue a new venture.
He told the Mail on Sunday at the beginning of this year that he sold and eventually left because he became “increasingly uncomfortable with the direction” the German parent company was taking.
DEAG does not seem to be bothered by the loss of the Royal Albert Hall dates, stating in its latest Q4/2016 report that “in addition to our strong presence in the German-speaking countries, our UK business also paid off with disproportionate organic growth, now accounting for around 35 percent of DEAG’s total sales.”
Commenting on the 2018 pre-Christmas programming, the Royal Albert Hall said to expect “world-class concerts from a whole host of genres – rock, pop, jazz, carols, classical music and show tunes – as well as comedy, films and family events, each with the Hall’s famous Christmas flavour.”