AEG Responds To MSG’s London Plans For State-Of-The-Art Sphere Venue

AEG fears that the Madison Square Garden Company might construct its new state-of-the-art venue too close to The O2, London.

The MSG Sphere
– The MSG Sphere
An artist rendering shows the planned MSG Sphere in Las Vegas.

AEG spoke up, after a preview event for the MSG Sphere was announced at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, March 20. This East London area already features the 80,000-capacity (for concerts) London Stadium, home to English soccer club West Ham United and concert venue, as well as the 7,500-seat Copper Box Arena, where the preview event will take place.

More importantly to AEG, however, is the fact that Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is only some 5.5 miles (bee line) north of the O2

“It is imperative that MSG’s proposals do not add to congestion in the area, especially on the Jubilee [Underground] Line, which is critical for the movement of guests to and from The O2 arena,” a company rep said.

The spokesperson added that AEG would “work with local stakeholders to ensure MSG’s plans do not affect this,” emphasizing that “AEG understands competition in the live music industry and does not oppose the principle of a new music venue in London.”

The MSG Sphere is expected to take the meaning of an entertainment and exhibition venue to the next level. Pollstar attended the unveiling in New York, where James Dolan, executive chairman of the Madison Square Garden Company, said there were going to be two Spheres, one in London and the other in Las Vegas.

Madison Square Garden Co. is affiliated with Oak View Group, the parent company of Pollstar.

The Vegas venue will break ground in June, just down the block from the Venetian, and is expected to open in 2020 with a 18,500 capacity. None such details have been revealed for London yet. This is expected to change at tomorrow’s preview event.

Both MSG and AEG have been out of sorts with each other lately, after trying to get artists to play each company’s own venues exclusively, thereby shunning the competition – a practice which Sharon Osborne recently described as “a pissing match between two giant companies.”